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.

Girlfriday Blog - Bonjour! Construction

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.

Girlfriday blog - My Dog Panda 2015 Calendar

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!

Girlfriday blog - My Dog Panda 2015 Calendar

Fresh Work: Ten Oaks Project

November 7th, 2014

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.

Girlfriday blog - Fresh Work: Ten Oaks Project

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.

Girlfriday blog - Fresh Work: Ten Oaks Project

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

Girlfriday blog - Fresh Work: Ten Oaks Project

(thank-you for the photo, Holly!! xo)

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

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: Pretzel & Compagnie

photo courtesy of: Pretzel & Compagnie

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.

Fresh Work: Pretzel & Compagnie

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.

Fresh Work: Pretzel & Compagnie

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 :)

Fresh Work: Davina + Daniel

February 8th, 2012

I have long been an admirer of wedding photographers Davina + Daniel – a beautiful, talented couple, traveling, creating beautiful work together, complementing each other – so amazing. Currently they’ve just kicked off seven months of on-again off-again travel starting with Guatemala – last year had them all over the map as well, including a stop-over in Kenya where they spent some time at an orphanage. They have a sweet little dog named Coco (that I know Panda is dying to meet) and when they got married it looked like this – I mean. Really.

I was thrilled (and a little nervous!) when they contacted me to re-vamp their identity. They felt that they were outgrowing their previous look and were giving a lot of careful thought to what their needs and wants were. I love it when clients take their time with this process – it may feel like a luxury, but it’s essential for lasting results. We brainstormed with images, moodboards, font exploration and came to the conclusion that a custom font treatment was the only way to go – after all, in a sea of wedding photographers, these two are one of a kind. The goal was to convey the unique, natural and completely personal approach that Davina + Daniel give to each of their assignments – not to mention their unrelenting passion, dedication and attention to detail. Oh, and did I mention they become friends with most of their clients? Add: lots of care and joy to the mix.

Davina + Daniel logo by Girlfriday

I worked on varying the line weights to allow each letter to shine while maintaining the flow and adding some handmade detail. This logo was a lot of work (in a good way) and I really enjoyed the process. Not only that, but I really enjoyed working with Davina and Daniel – I know that as a couple it can take some extra compromising and exploring (from choosing what movie to watch to decorating your home, let alone creating your identity!), and they were very patient and supportive of each others’ likes and dislikes during the process. Thanks guys, for being such lovely clients! I hope the logo continues to make you happy!

Note: I also helped them with the design of their new site, where the focus, naturally, had to be all about the work. You can check it out here.

Can’t get enough of Davina + Daniel? You can purchase a selection of their prints here.

Illustration Inspiration

December 1st, 2011

I’m a little late to the fun but my head’s been a little buried in the production of “another” magazine… ahem :) Speaking of which, Pure Green Magazine’s first printed issue ever is flying through the presses as we speak! I can’t wait to hold a copy in my hands…

I stumbled on NICE Magazine last week and immediately got lost in it. Not only is it a design and illustration magazine, but the current issue is about FOOD. I love it when good food meets good design. Mmmmm. Nice to see Ed Nacional and Kelli Anderson in there, and to discover a few new faces as well – I love Ben Johnston’s laser engraved cutting boards, Glasfurd & Walker’s recent work, and who can resist Linus Kraemer’s 360 degrees of cake?

Read the issue here, but be sure to grab a snack first.

Ben Johnston

Linus Kraemer

Glasfurd & Walker

All images from NICE magazine.

I’m a born and bred Montrealer. I love this town. I come from an era where Mile End was mostly inhabited by Hasidics and immigrants (including my family). I remember when Boulevard St-Laurent was populated with mom-and-pop shops, when the Champlain bridge had tollbooths, when there was no blue metro line, when Île-Ste-Hélène had an aquarium, when Westmount had a movie theater. Montreal’s come a long way since then – some good, some bad. Thankfully, some things never change… St-Viateur Bagel is still the same, albeit with a few more flavoured cream cheeses in their fridge.

Montreal is my favourite. It is constantly re-inventing itself: welcoming new people, saying goodbye to others, eternally broke and falling apart, yet always a wellspring of thriving artistic and cultural expression.  I love it when people come here and fall in love with its beauty and disparities. Chantelle Grady is a talented stylist and graphic designer who recent relocated to Montreal from Brisbane; she is also the author of A Little Relish, a charming online mag that allows her to combine her skills and express her love of all things food (and allows me to continue to culture my obsession for all things food – thank-you, Chantelle).

A Little Relish - Montreal

Last night I was working late and Chantelle tweeted that her new issue was out. I had been looking forward to it, because this issue is all about Montreal – and I was not disappointed. From her favourite café roundups to the markets to a few quintessential Montreal must-eats, her photography and design capture this amazing city wonderfully. There are recipes I can’t wait to try (hello, roasted tomato soup!), and I wasn’t surprised in the least to see my dear friend Marie-Ève featured beautifully and representin’!

A Little Relish - Montreal

A Little Relish - Montreal

One thing I’ve noticed about Montreal tributes and guides is that some hoods like NDG tends to fall to the wayside a little too often… Perhaps I’ll have to put my own rudimentary tribute together one day.

All in all, a beautiful tribute to your new hometown, Chantelle! I can really appreciate how much work you put into A Little Relish – it’s beautiful, and a treat to read. Looking forward to the next issue… with relish.

Pure Green Magazine is coming to a shop near you, folks!! That’s right, just a little more than a year after its premiere issue, Pure Green will be leaping off your computer screen and into your hot little hands. As you can imagine, our team is incredibly excited and we’re all working hard to prepare our up-coming issue. Our editor-in-chief Celine has been tirelessly working out every single detail – and believe me, there are a lot of details. Yesterday morning, the doorbell rang and I eagerly ripped open a long-awaited special delivery… here’s a tiny sneak peek!!

Pure Green Eco Events

Pure Green Montreal Guide

I am absolutely thrilled to be able to flip through one of the first printed copies of Pure Green Magazine – so much creativity, hard work and fabulous, original content has been poured in. I’m really proud to be a part of it.

I realize that, being a designer, I tend to get all worked up about this kind of thing – but the paper, the binding, the finish… it’s beautiful. And, of course, environmentally friendly! There are some kinks to work out, and many tasks to get done before the next issue is ready to go, but pretty soon Pure Green will be able to keep you company everywhere… the café, the bus, the laundromat, the doctor’s office… the bathtub (with a glass of wine)!

Just call it the little magazine that could. If you’d like to find out when subscriptions will become available, sign up for the Pure Green newsletter, or alternately, check this page for regularly updated information. If you are interested in stocking Pure Green Magazine at your shop, you can contact Pure Green.