Thursday, May 30, 2013

Victoria Fry

The last few days I've been working on and talking about writing prompts. Joy Corcoran even suggested that I do morning pages to help me get my writing for the day done. As though she were reading my mind (or my blog) Victoria Fry talked about morning pages on her blog this week. You can view the post here: http://victorialynnfry.blogspot.ca/ I love it when things come together so beautifully, and hopefully I can make this wonderful twist-of-fate-blog-review magical.

The name of Victoria's blog "Something Delicious" is the perfect name for this blog. Victoria's blog is indeed a scrumptious read! The best part of Victoria's blog is her wonderful personality. Victoria's enthusiasm for her blog and life shines brightly in all corners of this blog. I challenge you to read this blog and not smile. It can't be done!

I love that Victoria can talk about anything on her blog and it all seems to work no matter the subject. I recently had a conversation about this with another blogger. It can be really difficult to incorporate several different aspects into your blog!

Though she can talk about anything, Victoria is very focused on her writing. Though she talks about everything on her blog one can tell her blog is about writing. She doesn't even have to be talking about writing for her readers to know her love for writing. I don't know how she does it, but I'm loving her blog.

As I said, the best part of Victoria's blog is her personality. Part of that is how she sees the world. Victoria is very insightful in her articles about writing (and other things as well). She has a way of putting things that's very profound and sometimes I read what she says twice so that I can let the words sink in.

It really is no wonder that Victoria is a writing coach. I didn't say that before? Well it's true: http://www.vlawinning.ca I have not personally taken any of her coaching sessions, but I am bookmarking this page for a future time (when I am more focused on writing). With her personality and writing skill who wouldn't want to sit down with her and be coached? When visiting her webpage you can also get a peak at some of the great articles she has written!

Sorry everyone, my mind is turning to mush. So it's time to say goodbye to my review of Victoria's blog. It's not at all an end, but a little introduction to Victoria. I hope you enjoyed this as much as I have this week. I also hope you will join me again tomorrow. I'm not sure what I'm going to post... be it a drawing or a short work of fiction, but it will be something!





Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Fantastic Portfolio Advice

It seems that I always get more advice after I do something than before! I have been getting lots of great advice for creating portfolio websites recently. All of this information has been great, and will give me something to think about when I go to update my website.

Today I want to share with you a blog post that has a lot of great information on what makes a good portfolio. This is from Brooklyn Arden's website: http://chavelaque.blogspot.ca/2008/04/squids-101-what-i-like-to-see-in.html If you are an artist you need to read this article! Don't forget tomorrow I will be posting a new review tomorrow. Victoria-Lynn Winnin is the  person who is being reviewed!

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Because I Didn't Write

I mentioned a couple of days ago that I was going to do the 100 Days of Summer writing challenge (see it here http://www.shannonabercrombie.com/ ). I was all geared up and ready to go. Monday came and I read the challenge excitedly. Something happened, but I forget what it was. I'm sure it had something to do with my toddler. I kept going back to the webpage several times that day, but every time something would draw me away from my computer. The end of the day came and as I was lying in my bed I realized that I never did write anything.

Talk about an epic fail! It's Tuesday now, and it's 9:16pm and I haven't had the chance to write anything all day. I'm debating the odds of actually me sitting down and writing this thing. They don't look too good. Maybe I'll start the challenge tomorrow.

Monday, May 27, 2013

A Really Real Portfolio Website

I've been happy with my blog all this time. Ecstatic really (well.. mostly) so I thought what's the point of having a website? This has been my conversations with people in the last few weeks

People: "You need a portfolio website. You need a portfolio website".

Me: "Yes, I have a portfolio on my blog".

People: "No you need a PORTFOLIO WEBSITE!"

Me: "I HAVE A PORTFOLIO ON MY BLOG!"

People: "NO, YOU NEED A REALLY REAL PORTFOLIO WEBSITE!"

Me: "But I don't wannnnnaaa!"

People: "YOU MUST SET ONE UP TODAY!" After which they beat me senseless with their laptop.

So it was, and so it shall be.

Here's my new website (you might also notice the new link at the top): http://artistobscure.carbonmade.com/


Sunday, May 26, 2013

A Writing Challenge!

Shannon Abercrombie is having a fun challenge on her blog starting tomorrow. It's called 100 days of summer and it starts Memorial Day and runs until Labor Day. Every day she will give a writing prompt and you can win lots of prizes. Her website is here: http://www.shannonabercrombie.com/ Check it out, sign up with me and share what you are working on! I know I will. I'm so excited to get started. 


Friday, May 24, 2013

Finding Strange

It's been forever since I've been on Stumble. SO long in fact that I realized that I didn't have this blog on there! I only had my first blog... and that was so long ago. After quickly adding my blog I went to see what kinds of websites I could find out there. Here are a few of the stranger sites I found

make-everything-ok.com  - It does what it says... or does it?

koalastothemax.com - Fun and to the max.

wonderfl.net/c/iNy0/fullscreen/ It is a wonderful world!

balldroppings.com/js/ Play god with balls and lines!

www.sketchswap.com Fun stuff!

www.whatshouldireadnext.com Okay that one isn't so strange but is really nice if you don't know what to read!

What strange things have you stumbled upon lately?

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Andrea Brame


Self proclaimed "Creative Geek", Andrea Brame writes the blog that I'm reviewing this week. I could say that Andrea is a Writer and be done with it, but I believe calling her a Creative would be far more accurate. True, her blog is too new to say the extent of her creativity, but no one could visit this blog and doubt that Andrea is a true Creative. You can see her blog here: http://www.andreabrame.com

From the moment I read Andrea's blog post "I'd Make a Terrible Frontier Wife" I felt an instant kinship. I too am needlepointedly challenged (that's a thing, right?). Despite this problem we have fought and now both have blogs. I also love that her blog has a little bit of everything (which is another thing that I try to do). Also, I just found out that this is her third blog... and this is my third art blog, so that's not a sign at all...

It's easy to see why Andrea decided to become a writer. She is a natural storyteller which is evident in her blog posts. Andrea has a little (wonderful) story for many of her blog posts. These stories are autobiographical, whimsical and fun to read. Her fiction is just as whimsical and leads me to want to read more of her writing.

Andrea's blog has many videos (both musical and informational) and pictures that are just plain inspirational. I loved her list of online creativity tools and will be checking some of them out. It was also fun reading through her list of creative endeavors (see "Creative Daydreaming post). I think I need to come up with a list of these myself!

I love that Andrea has listed her in progress works! Believe me, anytime someone puts up a list like that it should be celebrated. Her list is an online list of what she hopes to achieve, and displaying something that personal is very difficult (especially when there are outside people who can read this list). I also want to point out that she has some fun easter eggs on her blog. I got a kick out of clicking these links and seeing all the fun places they took me!

I hope you enjoyed my review of Andrea's site. I know that I've not been posting as much lately, but I plan on changing that!  I will be posting another review next week so stay tuned!



Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Elephants Illustration

I finished this painting some time ago but I kept forgetting to share this. I'm not completely happy with how it turned out so I will be re-doing it soon. Most of my problems are with the paint application itself and a bit of the drawing. It's still not so terrible that I can't share!


Monday, May 20, 2013

Playing With Vine

I downloaded the app and I've played around with it a bit, but still I haven't taken full advantage of Vine.  Actually I've taken hundreds of videos, but have only posted 4 to Vine itself.  I like the idea of posting to Vine but I don't like not being able to save or edit my videos later. That's not my biggest beef with Vine.  My biggest beef is I keep forgetting the app is there!  I'll try to make this week to put up a couple more videos.  Follow me on twitter (and then from that follow me on Vine) to see if I remember to post. I'll be looking for your videos too!

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Logo Design

I had a big event this past Friday, and I spent most of Saturday and today recovering from the lack of sleep. Though I haven't gotten to do anything "art" lately I was able to create this logo for my Financial Advisor business Fortune by Design. I focus on helping families financially and helping people set up RESPs (Registered Education Savings Plans). I only give the background to this so you can see if you think the below logo fits the bill. Is it the best logo for the business? I don't know, but I'm liking it right now.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Free Magazines and Non-Fiction Writers!


Teresa Robeson is giving out 5 magazines. 3 Ladybug, and 2 Babybug magazines. These magazines all have her poetry in them! Go here to sign up, but hurry, the drawing is Sunday night!

Also for those of you who want to write Non-Fiction you should go to Teresa's site to learn more about NaNoWriMo. Yes I saw the name and thought "What the hey?" as well. It's really a great way to learn about Non-Fiction writing. It also has prizes and whatnot for those who are good at writing Non-Fiction. 

Check these both out and I hope you have fun! http://homesteadnotes.blogspot.ca/2013/05/an-un-birthday-giveaway-more.html

Monday, May 13, 2013

So This Madwoman Tweets in a Bar...


There is a giveaway hosted by a madwoman and a contest (hosted by another madwoman) that I want to tell you about today. Why are these women mad? All sorts of reasons, but mainly because of what they are giving away.

Ilana Waters is giving away not one but two ebooks on amazon! Castles in the Air is free on Amazon from May 15 to May 16 (this year of course). And House of Cards will be free from May 17 to May 18th. I haven't had the chance to pick up either one, so I'll be happy to download these then! Don't have an e-reader? No problem just go to Ilana's site and she has a link there. Just don't forget to pick up the books. Also, it should be noted that though she is a madwoman she does not bite - always good to know. 


If you want to enter and win a lot of books go to Jean's blog. She's giving away not one, not two... okay going to stop this now because it's 16 books she's giving away and it wouldn't be that funny to finish this. It's a bit of work to enter, but the more things you do the more chances you'll get for winning these books! Also if you go down a bit further you'll see another giveaway for a Kindle Fire or $199 paypal cash! Again it's a bit of work to enter, but well worth it if you win!  


Please, please, please if you go to either of these websites be sure to browse other things as well. These are both great sites with a lot to offer. Good luck and happy browsing!

Friday, May 10, 2013

The Carousel Ride


I've struggled with this painting for a while. The character on the horse was never right before this rendition. Also the background was originally turned the other way. I think it adds to the painting to have the camera facing away from the carousel and not towards it. I wanted a background that was loose and not inked. Some of the detail was lost in the scan. Will have to try again on a commercial scanner!


Thursday, May 9, 2013

Catherine A. Winn - Writer to Follow

As a writer Catherine A. Winn's writes mysteries, thrillers and suspense novels for Middle Grades – Adults. Her blog is inviting and a good read. If you want inspiration, information, or just want to read an enjoyable blog you should visit Catherine A. Winn's blog: http://catherineawinn.blogspot.ca/

Catherine received the Versitile blogger award from another blogger. It's no wonder because she does easily go from one subject to another. I love it when Cathrine writes about simple things like the time of year or chili. It is in these post where her personality and passion are revealed. Anyone can write about their lives, but it takes something to make chili interesting!

It is fun to read about Catherine's writing journey. It's nice to see that everyone has the same ups and downs in their writing life. The photos she adds to these (and other posts) add a lot to her writing. It's not often that writers add a lot of photos to their work, and it is a refreshing change to see a lot of pictures in a writer's blog. It also helps that the pictures are really good ( I loved the picture of the dog for Friday, April 12. He was cute and depicted exhaustion perfectly). You wont get bored with this blog even if you just look at the picture, but please do more than just look at the pictures!

There is a good amount of writer's information on this blog. There are interviews with interesting writers. Catherine has lots of writing tips and she gives her thoughts on things important to writers. I enjoyed the videos she has on her site (and would like to see more like them.) Catherine has a very inspirational site and you would be missing out if you didn't explore her blog!

Once again Catherine A. Winn's blog is here: http://catherineawinn.blogspot.ca/ Is is just too dorky to say that her blog is really “Winn” like so many blogs I've reviewed? I think I've been under my husband's humour influence for far too long. Check back next week for a review of Andrea Brame's Blog!

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Mermaid and Seahorse Illustration


Before I forget again I wanted to post a painting that I did recently! I'm usually in bed before I remember that I haven't posted this yet. I hope you enjoy it and I have another painting coming soon!


Monday, May 6, 2013

SCBWI Conference

For a couple of weeks now I've been working on getting my portfolio in order and printing of my work for the SCBWI conference. My last post showed the business cards and the postcards I made up. I also did some prints and some post cards for my portfolio. I need to do a little more printing and scanning before I start doing mailings to Art Directors.



There were some wonderful speakers at this event. Jared Hunt (second photo) was the Emcee for the event. He did a wonderful job introducing everyone and making smooth transitions when changes were made. I would have liked to see him leading one of the presentations as well. Maybe next year? Margriet Ruurs (not pictured) gave some wonderful tips on how to prepare oneself for publishing. She also gave a lot of information about researching for writing books. She was very warm and friendly. I would love to go to her bed and breakfast! Joan Marie Galat (top photo) talked a bit about researching for her Astronomy books. Joan did give publishing tips like Margriet, though both had different perspectives and both had great things to share. Joan went into different ways she gained writing credits over the years and how it helped her to get published. She was very high energy and a lot of fun to hear.

Richard Scrimger (bottom photo - right) gave an insightful look into why we write and the truths behind writing. His talk was humorous and thought provoking. The only problem I had was that it was limited to 20 minutes. I do wish that I could have caught his other presentation! Ken Killback (bottom photo - left) didn't give any presentations during this event. Instead he tirelessly, year after year, works hard in putting everything together for this event. He is the one who makes all of this possible so a great big THANK YOU to Ken!

Maxwell Newhouse (not pictured) who is now last, but far from being least, was my favorite speaker at this event. Illustrators are separate from the writers for two hours in the morning. I can't imagine talking for two hours about anything, and I'll have to say that Maxwell did a wonderful job. His talk at this conference was just so beautiful (as is his illustration and art). He told us about his past and what he had to do to become the person he is today. I can't speak for anyone in the room, but I thought he connected with everyone on a deeper level than is usually found in presentations or even in a classroom. He spoke about his books and what it took to make each of them a reality. The question and answer session he gave was great. I couldn't help but feel empowered after hearing him talk and conversing with him.

As always the problem at these events is that you always miss out on something. I missed out on Richard Scrimger's presentation on writing novels (chose picturebooks instead, but I loved that one as well!). I also missed out on Alison's presentation and the first pages panel because I was with the other Illustrators. I in no way think I made the wrong decisions in which directions I chose, though I do wish I could have duplicated myself so I could have gone to all of the events!

Below are some pictures from the events. At the bottom of this post I'm also going to include links for each of the people who spoke at the event. I do hope those of you in the area will join me next year for this awesome event!



Joan Marie Galat - Giving a passionate presentation!


Jared Hunt - Hiding behind some books, or holding up books for the prize draw... I don't remember which.


Ken Killback and Richard Scrimger - Having a blast doing a prize draw!


I highly recommend you check out all of these websites!

Joan Marie Galat - www.joangalat.com on Twitter @joanmariegalat and Facbook: http://tinyurl.com/aqs9y2v 
Jared Hunt - www.jaredhunt.ca
Maxwell Newhouse - www.maxwellnewhouse.com
Richard Scrimger - www.scrimger.ca and his Ink Me book site: http://orcabook.com/seventheseries/#!/