March 14, 2022

Sunflowers for Ukraine

I’m hoping to make a small difference instead of sitting with knots in my stomach and an ache in my heart. I’ve listed a Sunflowers Print in my shop. It features a painting I did years ago and still love, and one that seems pertinent for the time we are in as the sunflower is Ukraine’s national flower. 

For the entire month of March 2022, I will donate $20US from each US order and $25CDN from each Canadian order of my Sunflowers Print. The donations will go the the Canada-Ukraine Foundation which is providing humanitarian aid to Ukrainians in their country as well as countries where they’ve taken refuge.

The Sunflowers print measures 8 x 6 inches and is on beautiful watercolour paper. I print my art with love and care in my studio.

UPDATE: Thanks to the purchases of my customers, I was able to donate a total of $220US ($275CDN) to the Canada-Ukraine Foundation to help the Ukrainian people. Thank you for your love and support. We did it together. (This special fundraising effort ended on March 31, 2022.)


October 7, 2020

Pansies and Violas: Favourite Flowers

Anyone who has followed me for a long time here or elsewhere on social media knows how much I love pansies and violas. They have strong childhood associations for me and remind me particularly of my mom's mother who was named Viola. They are also favourite garden flowers with delicate looks yet a hardy character, perfect for a northern garden. And they are a joy to paint.

This spring I did a painting of some little yellow and white violas that I bought in a little pot to cheer up our kitchen windowsill. I've made my watercolour into prints and cards. You can see the note card in the photo at the top.

Cheering up is the key role I think of these flowers. Whether in the garden, a pot or a vase, their little faces have the ability to lift our spirits. Who doesn't need that, especially right now?

The very first print I created in my studio in 2011, when I launched my online art business, was of a watercolour painting I did of a pot of pansies in my backyard. That happy group of blue pansies was punctuated by pink nemesia, coral diascia and white euphorbia. It's still available in my shop as a print (shown below) and note cards.

This past week, I added an assortment of pansy and viola note cards to my shop. I chose five of my favourite watercolour paintings: Pansy Quartet, Pansies in a Pot, Posy of Pansies and Violas, Violas and Verbena, and Yellow and White Violas. This notecard collection is for all of the pansy and viola lovers out there like me.

When I was a little girl, I would follow my grandmother around as she fed the birds and squirrels in her backyard and tended to the annuals. One of my favourite memories is of her letting me pick pansies from the garden to put in the beautiful silver and glass posy vase she owned. The memory of gathering pansies with her was so special to me that I tracked down an almost identical vase for myself years later from an antique dealer.

If you'd like to see all of my pansy and viola art currently available, click here. There are prints, print sets, note cards, my new note card assortment, and a bookmark. I hope that they give you the same pleasure that they give me.

๐ŸŒผ  ๐ŸŒผ  ๐ŸŒผ  ๐ŸŒผ  ๐ŸŒผ

August 5, 2020

Flowers for Change

Flowers for Change print featuring a watercolor of a bouquet

I've been quiet on my blog. I've been pretty quiet in my life recently too! I'm still staying home as much as possible while we wait out this crazy pandemic! But I haven't been idle. One of the most important things I did recently was to create a painting to support the Black Lives Matters movement. In June, I painted a bouquet with flowers individually chosen for their significance as a tribute to George Floyd and so many others lost to racial intolerance and injustice.

Black tulip - power, strength and supreme elegance
Dill - powerful against evil
Borage - directness, courage and sometimes seen as a remedy for a heavy heart
Black-eyed Susan - justice 
Blue iris - faith and hope
Thyme - courage and strength
Forget-me-not - remembrance

Here's my rough sketch and the early stages of the painting. I used reference photos from my garden for most of the flowers. 

Sketch and preliminary watercolor painting of Flowers for Change bouquet

I added a print, note cards and bookmark to my shop in mid-June, all with a fundraising aim. I'm happy to say that as of July 31, 2020, I've raised US$160/CA$222 in total from my "Flowers for Change" print, note card and bookmark sales! Your orders have helped to support the work of: Black Women in Motion, Afrique au Fรฉminin, the Black Health Alliance and, mostly recently, the Black Solidarity Fund. Thank you to everyone who has ordered and, by doing so, supported these important organizations.
Flowers for Change Note Card - watercolor bouquet
The Flowers for Change print, note cards and bookmark continue to be available in my shop. In August, the proceeds from orders of these products will go to the Black Solidarity Fund which unites over 50 Canadian Black community organizations. Donations to this fund are being doubled by P&G Canada up until August 31st! (They will donate $2 for every $1 given up to a million dollars up until the end of August.) So it's definitely not too late to order and help!

A paper bookmark with a bouquet in watercolor and a worn copy of The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison
♥︎ ♥︎ ♥︎ ♥︎ ♥︎

During the past few weeks, I've been doing more gardening than painting. I've also been reading and baking. I'm trying to take advantage of the summer days and create a soothing rhythm out of the weirdness we're living. Every time I'm working in the garden, I'm thinking that I really should be painting this flower or that. New paintings are in my head for now but I hope to get up those studio stairs soon! I know it would do me a world of good and I will share whatever I do with you.

I hope that you are safe and well wherever you happen to be at the moment. Thank you for dropping by. It's nice to have guests, even if they are virtual ones!


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