This Saturday at Finnegan’s was a memorable one. Hot, sunny, full of people, and I got to spend it with my dear friend Lauren, her wonderful husband Kevin and their adorable baby boy Gideon. Lauren is a girl who knows her housewares so I was happy that they went home with a little treasure trove of loot – as for me, I had been looking for a gardening hat and I finally found one. Pinky striped awesomeness. Five bucks.

This Week at Finnegan's

A special thank-you to my Christian for the picture! <3

New column! It’s summertime in Hudson, and that can only mean one thing: Finnegan’s Flea Market! We live ten minutes away so health permitting, we go pretty much every Saturday. Things started slowly in rainy May but this past Saturday it was going like gangbusters. Each visit Panda makes about a million new friends and we usually pick up a little something or three. Here’s my loot from last weekend: three hinged (which means they fit me, for once) cloisonnĂ© bracelets. Six smackeroos.

This Week at Finnegan's

Fresh Work: Marcia Massa

This post is about my mom. Her name is Marcia. When I was little, I didn’t understand why some people called her “Mar-sha”. Now that I know how to spell, I get it ;) There are a lot of other things I now get about my mom. For instance, at right about the age I am now, she was raising two girls on her own, working a full-time job (teaching – which is more than a full-time job) as a fine arts teacher, simultaneously studying to get her masters and also creating meticulous, beautifully abstract fine art. She has always been driven to create and has always had to carve out that time to make it happen. She was and continues to be a true inspiration.

Fresh Work: Marcia Massa

Over the years she has amassed an incredible collection of work. Now that her girls are grown and she has been able to retire, she has finally had the opportunity to participate in a few exhibitions and is in the process of slowly getting recognized for her work. Unfortunately this is an area I don’t have much experience in – but when it became clear that it would be helpful for her to have a portion of her portfolio viewable online, I knew this was something I could help with.

Fresh Work: Marcia Massa

This was a really fun project because not only was I able to give a tiny bit back to my mom for everything she’s done for me, but Christian took the majority of the photos so it was a real family endeavour. Feel free to take a look if you’d like your art fix for the day :) marciamassa.com. I’m so proud of you, Mum. I love you.

Happiness Is…

May 30th, 2014

The cheery magic of one of my favourite flowers. Also, one of my favourite scents. Also, one of my favourite times of the year. Please, please last as long as you can. Yum. Have a wonderful weekend!

Happiness Is... Lily-of-the-Valley

NFB 75th anniversary

When I was very little, I remember my mum bringing home a borrowed projector and a bunch of NFB animation reels for us to watch together, projected on our living room wall. When I was older and studying Illustration & Design, our class had the privilege of being taught a few classes by the talented Ishu Patel. He even took us on a tour of the NFB’s offices and we were able to see some animation projects in progress – it was so motivating. I remember being so excited to visit a space where such inspiring work had been dreamed up.

NFB 75th anniversary

I have friends who work at the NFB, my talented husband has worked on a few of their productions and we live in Hudson, the town that the inimitable Norman McLaren called home. Whether you remember The Hockey Sweater or The Big Snit (a personal favourite), every Canadian has a special connection to the NFB. So when they asked me to illustrate a timeline to help celebrate their 75th anniversary, I couldn’t have been more thrilled!

NFB 75th anniversary

The best part about working on this timeline was becoming totally absorbed by the NFB website – watching movies and discovering even more about the people and work that are such a special part of our heritage. To see the entire timeline and to find out more, please check out their blog post – and if you haven’t already, I invite you to spend some time exploring the NFB site – it’s a whole lot of fun. Happy anniversary, NFB!!

NFB 75th anniversary

And the winner is….

February 24th, 2014

Annabelle! Congratulations!! I’ll be sending you a 2014 My Dog Panda calendar tomorrow!

With a whopping three comments, this giveaway had VERY good odds, haha :) Thank-you so much, dear ladies, for participating! Panda sends you all kisses! xo

Happy Pandaversary!

February 21st, 2014

Happy Pandaversary!

*This giveaway is now closed – congratulations to Annabelle for winning!

Happy third Pandaversary! To commemorate three years of kisses, hugs, snow angels, grass rolling, car-trunk-hijacking, ball-non-retrieving, carrot-munching, cat-food-stealing, ear-scratching, tail-chasing and all-around smiley-ness and joy for life, I am giving away one of the few Panda calendars left in my possession. We have managed to sell almost all of them and I am so grateful – I can’t wait to make a collective donation to the Frontier Animal Society on your behalf!

Please leave a comment below if you’d like to participate for a chance to win a 2014 My Dog Panda calendar – I will be randomly selecting a winner on Monday. And as always, in honour of Pandaversary, feel free to do one of the following things today (or, continue to celebrate all weekend!)

- share hugs, kisses and smiles
- go for a walk outside
- take a nap or three
- eat some carrots

Panda will be getting even more love than usual today – if that is even possible. Have a wonderful weekend everybody!

Calendar Girl

December 17th, 2013

Here at Girlfriday, we like to give back. As 2013 winds down, I’m proud to have donated work and time this year to the very deserving and amazing Ten Oaks Project in Ottawa, as well as the tirelessly hard-working St. Mary’s Hospital Foundation in Montreal. This year, Panda asked if she could get in on the fund-raising fun – so we hatched up a little calendar project to give back to Panda’s favourite cause, because they are also the reason she is alive today. Now you can get your monthly dose of Panda even when the internet is out!

Panda Calendar 2014

I’m pretty excited to finally have a first offering in my Etsy shop, and extra-pleased that any profit these calendars make will be going straight to the Frontier Animal Society. We’re hoping to make this an annual fund-raising tradition!

Panda Calendar 2014

I’d like to give a big thanks to Mylène and Warren at Pazazz, who were very patient with me and did such a beautiful job on the printing. The 2014 My Dog Panda calendar is in a handy 5 x 7″ postcard format, printed on satin finish FSC-certified card stock – I love how it turned out. A special thanks also to my darling Christian, who helped take the pictures.

Click here if you’d like to purchase a 2014 My Dog Panda calendar for yourself or for the animal-lover in your life, and give back to an amazing, no-kill animal shelter to boot. It’ll give you the warm fuzzies, Panda style.

We love our calendar girl!

Fresh Work: Lake Jane

November 27th, 2013

I am just a tad behind on my work posts – even though my next few work updates won’t necessarily be the freshest in freshly freshed freshmakers, please bear with me as I try to get caught up.

This past summer I helped my dear friend Marie-Eve Best update her very popular blog, which also happens to be one of my favourites: Lake Jane. If you didn’t know already, Marie-Eve is incredibly talented in many areas: interior design, fashion, cooking, diys, writing… I could go on. Her blog is a lovely mix of personal stories, recipes and fabulous fashion and design discoveries. She recently started up an interior design consulting business and I speak from experience when I say that she is a power-charged dynamo that flies into your space and whips it into shape before you have time to blink – all while remaining affordable and creatively re-using what you already own. She’s currently helping me finish my office space so I’ll be sure to share the end result when we’re done. Marie-Eve has flawless taste, so I was a little bit nervous about fulfilling her expectations – but lucky for me, she is also a fabulous communicator and I’m really proud of the end result!

Lake Jane blog redesign close-up

To keep the content front and center, we developed a look that was light but distinctive. A subtle grid design, soft watercolour grays and a little hint of mint brought everything together.

Lake Jane blog redesign

If you haven’t yet gotten hooked on Lake Jane, go on, take a gander and enjoy! And thank-you, Marie-Eve, for the great project – it was such a delight to work with you :)

Happiness Is…

October 25th, 2013

Fall daydreaming. Best performed on a carpet of crunchy leaves, listening to the squirrels and taking deep breaths while the sun shines down and warms your fur face. Have a lovely weekend, everybody!

Fall daydreaming