I am truly amazed to be posting about Panda calendars for the third year in a row! It’s really touching that Panda keeps friends and family smiling all year long with her photos and antics. Lucky for me, it means that I get to keep snapping pictures guilt-free.
For guaranteed grins on a monthly basis throughout 2016, feel free to indulge in a little gift-giving for yourself – and, if you’re stumped on gifts for the animal-lovers and welfare-activists in your life, this should do the trick!
If you’ve been a fan of Panda’s for a while, this year’s calendar will not disappoint. Running, smiling, office-helping… what a good girl she is. If it wasn’t for the Frontier Animal Society, she would have died before we even got to meet her. As happens all too frequently in their dedicated work, they saved her life with literally one or two days to spare. They richly deserve every bit of support that comes their way, and they will be receiving all profits from this calendar. Check out their Facebook page to see how much they truly care about their furry little wards, and remember to always adopt a rescue.
Panda says thank-you for your support, and please send carrots to help her prepare for next year’s rigorous photo shoots! Happy, happy 2016!
This project is even closer to my heart than usual because it’s for my sweet husband Christian. Christian is an accomplished lighting technician who has worked in the film industry for years; he’s also a very talented handyman who has helped us transform every place we’ve ever lived in together. Put together his home improvement know-how with the predictable down-times of the cinema world, and it was only a matter of time before he started up a second business for himself. He’s currently completing his studies to obtain his RBQ number and has been working with local construction companies for the past year to sharpen his skills – so naturally I had to help out with a logo and a website.
Since we’ve got bilingual ground rules here in our Belle Province, he went with a friendly name that everybody understands and that emphasizes his approachability. Renovations are messy and patience-testing – yes indeedy, ask me all about it – but they don’t have to be scary and the process doesn’t have to be murky. We’ve encountered challenges with every single contractor we’ve ever hired and I’m sure that many people can relate, so hopefully Christian’s approach may present a refreshing change from the norm.
Christian just recently finished his first project for our friends Marie-Eve and Mike – Marie-Eve wrote a lovely blog post about it here – I love this project! Marie-Eve has impeccable taste as you probably already know. As usual, she’s inspired me to tackle more than a few of the neglected corners in our own abode. Congratulations honey, on your new business! Oh, and I have a kitchen for you to look at… it just happens to be very nearby. And a bathroom… and… xo
Incredibly, last year’s fun little project wasn’t just a one-time thing. The evidence is right here in my office, in a box that arrived over the weekend. I’m so excited that Panda calendars have made it back for another year! The tradition continues: all profit will be donated to the shelter that saved Panda’s life. Without the tireless work of the Frontier Animal Society, our beloved Panda and hundreds of other sweet, furry little souls simply would not be here today. Their dedication and genuine concern for all those in their charge is truly heart-warming and very special.
If you have a pet lover on your holiday gift list, this will provide them with a year’s worth of smiles and the knowledge that you have also contributed to a very fine organization. Or, if you’re in the mood to treat yo self, this is a fabulous opportunity to do so and give to a good cause to boot.
Panda would like to reassure you that many carrots were harmed in the production of this calendar. A special thank-you to my sweet Christian for taking these shop photos! Please help us sell out, which we almost did last year! You can purchase your very own Panda calendar here. Happy 2015!
It’s a big deal when one of your clients celebrates their tenth anniversary; it becomes that much more significant when you realize that you’ve been with them right from the start. When my sister Sonja first told me about the Ten Oaks Project, Holly and Julia Wagg weren’t married yet and were hatching a dream – a dream that became reality thanks to the hard work, dedication and love of many caring folks.
Last Saturday, I hopped on a bus to Ottawa to join them in celebrating ten years of love, diversity and inclusiveness. It was a very touching event, filled with beautiful testimonials and heartfelt appreciation – not to mention glitter, crafts and cake. The Ten Oaks Project has transformed the lives of so many – if you haven’t heard of them, do take a look at all the good that they do. Over the past decade, as I shifted between agency and freelance work, I collaborated with them to create their Camp Ten Oaks logo, Bowl-a-Thon posters, their first website, their annual reports; Christian and I visited Camp Ten Oaks and photographed their very first summer. Whenever I could, I donated my services. I’ve watched them grow, thrive, and develop even further – notably, Project Acorn which my awesome sister Sonja dedicated so many years to.
Most recently, I had the pleasure of designing their tenth anniversary logo, badge and invitation. It was my first time designing a badge and I am so hooked – must design more badges. So much fun.
Dear Holly, Julia, Sonja, Mark, Lee, Hannah and the entire Ten Oaks team and family – congratulations on your ten years, and here’s to many more life-changing decades ahead of you. I’m so pleased and honoured to have been able to contribute in some small way, and I can’t wait to see what we come up with next. Happy, happy anniversary :) xo
(thank-you for the photo, Holly!! xo)
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.
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.
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.
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.
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!
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!!
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!
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!
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!
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!
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.
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 :)
I was very excited to answer the doorbell this morning because I knew that if I was lucky it would be the very latest in Pure Green goodness – and it was! Volume 3! I’d already gotten very well acquainted with this issue through the project files but it’s always a real treat to see and feel it all on paper, as it was intended. It’s a beautiful issue – fantastic stories, guides, tips and as always, amazing photography. Speaking of photography, Christian did a beautiful job photographing one of our features (A Moveable Feast), which was written and styled by the very talented Michelle Diamond. Michelle came to our place back in May laden with beautiful food and styled up a gorgeous spread just for us (her recipes are equally gorgeous, I can say this definitively because I got to eat some of said amazing food afterwards). She takes us on a guided tour of some beautiful Quebec cheeses and accompanying artisanal products, for a summer picnic how-to that’s not to be missed.
I am also absolutely loving the planisphere insert that our very own talented Bess designed exclusively for this issue – I can’t wait for a clear night so I can try it out. Finding that little tear-out DIY gift amongst the pages reminds me of being a kid, and really what could be more fun in the summertime than feeling child-like again. I hope you enjoy our new issue, we’re very proud of it! You can subscribe to Pure Green here or feel free to check out our wonderful stockists here.
Bronwyn and Andreas are two of the hardest-working people you might meet. They run a bakery, have adorable twin toddler boys and are in the process of taking over Montreal and beyond with their gorgeous, authentic pretzels. When Bronwyn contacted me about their pretzel business I was really excited to help them out – not only had they given much time and thought to their plans, but they were revving up for an appearance at the Montreal Beer Festival and Bronwyn was determined to make it all come together with a unified identity.
It started with a fresh new name and took off from there. We chatted and brainstormed together and it was great – I’m so lucky to have clients with impeccable taste. We wanted to avoid any typical pretzel visual traps and steer away from anything that felt too traditional. Bronwyn was inspired by modern design with a touch of vintage and nostalgia, so we developed a round crest/stamp with a minimalist pretzel icon, clean typography and a textured background reminiscent of old-world bistro blackboards.
I got a little carried away thinking of all the possibilities – I couldn’t help myself. Can’t you just imagine the wax paper, stickers, pretzel boxes, napkins…? So much fun.
Snack-lovers: be sure to drop by, say hello and try a pretzel or three – there’s nothing like enjoying some delicious treats AND supporting a local business. Bronwyn and Andreas, I can’t wait to see where you go with this – I know you are destined for home-baked greatness! Thanks again, I’m looking forward to our next delicious project together :)