Don’t you hate it when you have a million ideas running through your mind and approximately 15 things you have to do and you don’t have time to be obsessed with Olympics, but the Olympics are on so you’re obsessed with Olympics? This is my first world problem I have going on right now.
Because I’m in love with Scott Moir and Tessa Virtue, I’ve been watching Ice Dancing. Who are we kidding? I watch everything. Yes- I’m one of THOSE people, who every four years, gets very excited about all of the sports people thingys and then goes back to living in complete ignorance of Speed Snowboarding , Ski-shooting, Mogul half-pipe, Super G Ice Dancing, Aerial Figure Skating, Downhill Curling and all the other sportsy sports out there.
Oh, I also LOVE the triathlon where they do the Ice snowboard down the moguls, land into the half frozen sea with snowshoes, get out and ride on their bobsleds down a ski-jump into a hockey net. SO AMAZING!….or was that a dream I had last night?
So, here is what I’ve come up with so far as a solution to being completely lazy on the couch watching Olympics while also feeling productive. I’m just showing “snippets” of the sketches here, the finished products will be along shortly. Hope you enjoy!
Sweet mother, it has been so long since I last posted! I’ve been pretty busy…. Busy doing nothing to be more precise. To make it easier, I will just do this blogpost in point form.
What I have been doing:
– On December 21st, we finished our basement that we were forced to do renovations on because we had a little mini flood back in June. YES- it took that long & it is a long road to nowheresville to explain why.
– On the 22nd of December, we took our daughter in to get stitches..she fell on the ice & put a huge hole in her knee. To be fair, she is our clumsiest child. She makes up for it by being an intellectual…oh the joys of having an 11 year old that is very literal & logical and corrects every sarcastic comment I make. I would tell her to stop but I think she’s a lot smarter than me & I wouldn’t know where to begin.
– On the 23rd, I got food poisoning. This was much fun.
– Also on the 23rd, our furnace quit. Now that might not seem like a big deal but let me tell you, when the temperatures are -30 degrees (-22 fahrenheit) THAT’S A HUGE DEAL!!!! Unfortunately, I was delirious with nausea at the time & could not muster up the energy to wake my husband up in the middle of the night to tell him the furnace quit. Between the freezing and the wretching, my body couldn’t figure out what to concentrate on. I would rather swim in hot lava than go through these 2 things simultaneously again.
– By Christmas day however, things were pretty much back to normal & I began my marathon of 3 seasons worth of Downton Abbey. I don’t really watch TV during the year & so I figured I should try to get in as much as I can over the holidays. Now I’ve got this continuous narrative of British Aristocrat in my head. I actually demanded that all of my servants call me “Your Ladyship” which was working quite well until I discovered I didn’t have any servants.
– In December, I also turned 40. This deserves a list all of it’s own. So here it is.
My thoughts about turning 40
– it helps that most people tell me I look about 33. Whether they are telling the truth or not remains to be seen.
– I feel as though I basically took a leave of absence from my life between the ages of 26-38. Now I’m picking up where I left off and getting myself back. So in my mind, I am back to being who Janelle was becoming at 26, but I missed 12 years somewhere along the way. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t regret it. I wanted children & I actually went through a lot to get children, including 2 miscarriages and a whole lot of awesome post-partum depression. But did I lose some of myself along the way? Maybe I will discover that I have actually gained more than I lost. Then I can pick up where I left off with even more than I would have had I just kept going without interruption. Oh dear, those are some wordy sentences…good luck trying to make sense of it.
– So yes, I am honestly having a little trouble with it & feel like I am maybe going through a mid-life crisis a little bit. I’m very happy to be a “more mature woman” but it seems like everybody is looking at me like my best years are behind me. Then again, maybe I should just get over myself & realize that no one is looking at me or thinking anything at all! Ok that’s probably more than enough honesty for one day.
My Plans for 2014
– More shows. I have already booked some (I will announce those later) and I hope to schedule in a few more.
– I also have some new sketches I will be using such as, little girls in tutus, figure skates, hockey skates. I also want to do some more wedding themed pieces.
– Trying/experimenting with some new ideas for my art. Working with more mediums and techniques. So be watching for some pieces that are quite different from what you’ve seen in the past, as well as many new pieces that are in the same abstract folk art style you are used to seeing from me.
– More art videos. I’m working on a new one now for January.
– Of course I’m excited to see some licensing deals this year as well.
& now, just for kicks. I will show you the INSANE amount of snow we have received over the last month. Just a few statistics for you: within 2 weeks, we received all of the average snowfall we normally get over an entire winter. We now have more snow than the last 3 Decembers combined.
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So this is my Saturday evening. There is a blizzard outside so this setting is particularly cozy tonight. I have my Starbucks, candles, wine and my art so I’m aaaaallllll good. I could tell you all about those little canvases that I’m working on there but I decided to do a couple of videos instead. In the videos I discuss my 5×7 Originals that I do. I have about 100 of them in all for sale. I also show you lots of other cool things that I have available for purchase and I will also have them at the show that I am doing on November 28, 29, 30. Also, at the end of the first video I
open the back door and show you some of the blizzard, which as it turns out, was at a more calm point…it got a lot worse later in the day. The snow doesn’t really show up very well on the video that I took either but you can hear the blowing wind. Oh one other thing! In the second one I have my glasses off & on…the reason for that is because I was filming while taking care of my daughter and I kept forgetting I had glasses on & off & I didn’t really feel like going back & shooting it all again.
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Happy Thanksgiving to all of my fellow Canadians out there! I’ve had Fall on the brain for sometime now so I am doing a few pieces with the Autumn/Fall theme. I’m actually working on 3 pieces simultaneously. I hardly ever do that…it’s usually just one at a time, but right now I have too many ideas in my head at once so I thought I’d try working on them all at the same time. I’m hoping the pieces will end up looking similar but hopefully different enough.
So here in Alberta, Canada…especially up here in Grande Prairie, which is in Northern Alberta, we don’t really get a lot of different colors in the Fall. It’s mostly just brown & bright yellow. That’s if you’re lucky. Usually, it’s so windy that the leaves don’t even stay on the trees very long so it’s just….sticks. Nice right? BUT sometimes we can get lots of bright yellow leaves against a darkening/foreboding deep blue sky with the sun shining & the contrast is really beautiful. That’s if the snow doesn’t come. I’ve always wondered why people would say Fall was their favorite time of year. To me, it just means Summer is over & Winter is coming & could LITERALLY be here any second. We don’t really get transitional seasons here, whereas in more Southern areas you still can have lovely warm fall days with just a little bit of crispness in the air. Up here, all we get is COLD. It’s not crisp. It’s cold. Of course, there are some people who would beg to differ with me.
So that’s my feelings about the season of Autumn. I am trying to incorporate those into my current pieces. Hopefully I can get some of that windy, foreboding blue prairie sky against the bright yellow leaves, but also include some of the oranges and reds that traditionally come with Fall as well.
This is just a short short video of the state of one of my pieces right now. I still have more sketching to do with the people I will put on there but the background is pretty much done I think. Let me know what you think in the comments below. & please don’t forget about the fabulous Pin it To Win It Contest! There is still time to enter & one person will win over $180 worth of Janelle Nichol artwork including various sizes of Prints, and a hand embellished, hand signed, canvas reproduction! Enter here!
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You may or may not remember that just over a month ago I recently took a trip to Las Vegas to meet with my agent for the International Licensing Show. I was also able to film an interview there which I am finally going to show you in this post!
I had a TON of fun and it was really exciting as it is something I never really imagined would happen. So I thought I’d share a little bit about how this all came about…the art & the licensing. I’ve always been very creative & I have never been scared to start creative projects even if I had never done them before. I would say my creative side was first evident in music. That is what I did for a career & that is what I’ve studied in. Many people who knew me back in the day have now told me that, even though I did not consider myself any type of artist, they aren’t surprised to hear now that I have become a professional legitimate artist. The signs have always been there but it was not until later on that they actually came & showed themselves to me (HAHA). In a future post I will share about how I learned how to sketch. It’s kind of an interesting story.
Now the licensing part of it came much later. I had been interested in licensing my artwork for quite some time but didn’t know anything about it. I didn’t even know it was called “licensing”! I did some research online, & eventually sent out an email to another artist. I don’t even remember what I wrote in the email & frankly, I don’t want to…I’m pretty sure I would be embarassed because it was probably not that well written and remember? I had no idea what I was even doing! My agent has “threatened” to show it to me but I refuse. So long story still kinda long…my agent Todd, ended up receiving this email and he contacted me. In the beginning, I was quite hesitant because there are so many people out there offering services that don’t know much more about certain topics than I do! However, the one thing that kind of got my attention was that he was also the agent for a very successful artist that I had LONG been a fan of. After having a few conversations with him, I soon decided that it would be great to work with him. He has spent hours & hours really teaching me all about licensing, how to make my artwork more marketable and getting me set up with this website. Plus- he puts up with all of my emails that contain all of my endless questions. BONUS!! In case you didn’t know, my agency is International Creative Licensing.
Which brings us to me finding myself in Las Vegas at the Licensing Show. Right from the very beginning, like the very first conversation I had with him, it was suggested I plan to go. I was like, “Sign me up. I am there with bells on”. But I have to admit, there was a part of me that was thinking this might not go anywhere & the only place I would find myself in June would be my house here in Grande Prairie, Alberta, Canada, literally praying for Summer to come so my winter long depression could finally come to an end. Ok, I’m exagerating, winter doesn’t last here until June…it’s more like May.
So here’s the video that I filmed as well as some photos of my WONDERFUL time in Las Vegas. Basically, if I wasn’t at the show, I was at the pool. I was eating that sun up like nobody’s business! We were also given tickets to go see Blue Man group which was great BTW. In this video, I mainly answer questions about my art as it relates to licensing, but I will be doing another video soon where I answer all of the questions you have asked about me that have more to do with me as a person & my art & how I fit it all in.
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Hi everybody! Hope you are all enjoying a lovely Summer. Today I want to tell you about a few things. You may or may not be aware of the flooding that occurred in Southern Alberta, Canada and I know many of you who follow my blog live in the affected areas. For those of you who are not familiar with the situation, Calgary & many towns in Southern Alberta were flooded. You can read about that and view some crazy photos HERE.
But I have been hearing many stories of people volunteering…so many great stories with awesome people helping each other. People coming from out of province into the city of Calgary, then people from the city of Calgary going to the town of High River which was very badly affected. I could include so many links to stories about this but HERE is just one of them.
Living up in Northwestern Alberta, I am still a ways away from it, but hearing about people I know volunteering & contributing made me want to do something as well. So here is what I am doing and I hope you will be willing to help out as well!
There is a Women’s Emergency Shelter that was affected by the flooding in Calgary and in speaking on the phone with them, I learned that they had to evacuate the shelter in the middle of the night. This meant women & children with basically no possessions except what the shelter provides for them, lost everything & they didn’t really have that much to begin with. I can’t imagine what it would feel like to lose many of my possessions but when I think about women & children who already didn’t have that much, to lose that as well, it’s pretty heartbreaking. Many of you can tell through my artwork that I obviously have a soft spot for women and children in my heart. I really strive to portray, in my art, women who are strong but also sweet & sensitive. Women who are beautiful and inspired. I always want to send positive, uplifting messages in my artwork that encourage women to be who they were made to be. The women in my pieces don’t have to follow anyone’s definition of what a women is SUPPOSED to be, they just need to be themselves. The children in my artwork also usually have a sweet playful side with maybe a little bit of mischief at times. I really just try to portray how I view women & children in real life!
So with all that said, I decided to donate, for the rest of July, half of the proceeds from EVERY print sold and EVERY Limited Edition Giclee Canvas sold, starting today. As I said previously, I have been in contact with the shelter and I filled out an application which was reviewed by them so please know that your money will go towards purchasing some artwork you love for yourself or maybe a friend, but also will be going to help in relief efforts for the Calgary Womens Emergency Shelter. Please help me raise some money for these women and children! Remember- 50% from EVERY print and Limited Edition Giclee Canvas sold will go towards this SHELTER.
How can you help?
There are 2 ways you can help.
1. Purchasing– Please go to my Etsy Shop & all of the purchases of prints and canvases will be included in the donations. You can pay by Paypal or click on “other” when you check out & send me your CC info in a message through Etsy. If you would prefer not to purchase through Etsy, please send me an email HERE & we can work out your purchases & they will count as well for the relief donations. When you purchase a 16×20 print, or any size of Giclee Canvas Reproduction know that these are LIMITED EDITIONS. They are numbered and you will receive a Certificate of Authenticity upon request.
2. Sharing– Like/Share this post and the one I will do from my Facebook Page. If you are not able to purchase at this time, you can help by Sharing, Liking, Tweeting, Pinning & letting people know that if they purchase something it will go towards this cause. If you just share it without telling people why, they may not respond.
About The Calgary Women’s Emergency Shelter
The Calgary Women’s Emergency Shelter is focused on ending family violence and abuse in the lives of women and children, youth and men. Over the last 39 years, the agency has helped over 139,000 Calgarians build safe and healthy relationships. For more information visit them HERE
Please feel free to post any comments/questions you have in the comment section below.
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Happy Canada Day to my fellow Canadians! So happy to be a Canadian…even if the weather is sometimes pretty awful.
Here are 50 great gifts Canada gave the world. Enjoy!
Hi everybody, hopefully, you are all enjoying warmer weather where you are. I know that Spring has finally arrived here in Grande Prairie. Well, it was more like instant Summer as we had +30 degrees Celsius within one week of full blown winter weather!
I have been quite busy getting ready for the show in Calgary. We just returned Monday evening. It was a pretty busy time. It was great to be in Calgary and have the opportunity to show my artwork there. I had a great time meeting many of you who have now subscribed to my newsletter and some of you went to my FB page immediately & “liked” me WHILE you were waiting for me to put your purchase through! I really enjoy meeting new collectors as well as talking with people who have been collecting my art for some time now. I look forward to doing more shows throughout Alberta this year and you can always check out my schedule Here. It looks like I will be quite booked in the Fall, so as of now, I unfortunately will not be able to make it back to Calgary this year but hopefully in 2014.
Here are a few pictures of the show as well as a quick video I put together. Let me know what you think in the comments below. In my next blog post, I will be featuring some new pieces and sketches!
How is everybody today? We have been having some great weather for the last little while. Well….great for us. It’s been warm & very “Springy”. Usually we do not have much of this type of weather this early so it’s been really nice. Today actually felt warm! Of course that all depends on where you live. If you live in Canada & especially Alberta than you would agree with me. If you live in a pretty warm climate than you would think it’s still quite cold. But 6 degrees Celsius is pretty warm for the end of February!! We had so much snow before Christmas & it is so nice to see it melting away.
So I’m definitely more of a Spring person. I love seeing all the coldness & darkness of winter leave. I know Fall can be very beautiful in lots of places but many years, we don’t get to enjoy the leaves changing colors here. They turn yellow & then they are gone from the wind. It also gets quite cold here about the beginning of October. I think if I lived in a different area I would probably enjoy Autumn a lot more.
So here is my question- are you more of a Fall person or a Spring person? Also, just for fun, tell me in the Comments, have a look at my mixed media Folk art images shown here & tell me which piece you prefer? To purchase the Spring/Summer themed piece “In The Springtime” Click Here, to purchase the Fall themed “Our Best Memories” Click Here.
I’ve been told that I should write a little bit about Canada on my blog. Here’s a funny little thing I read recently from Jeff Foxworthy & I thought I would include it here. For those of you who are from Canada, I’m sure you will identify as you laugh along & for those of you who aren’t from Canada, hopefully this will be…..enlightening? I also added some photos I have taken of Canada from British Columbia on the west side going east to Niagara falls.
I have also added my own thoughts to some of these. They are in purple.
If your local Dairy Queen is closed from September through May,
You may live in Canada. ya- the thought of going into a Dairy Queen in the middle of winter is not one I have often.
If someone in a Home Depot store offers you assistance and they don’t work there,
You may live in Canada. I believe I have actually been the one to offer assistance. On more than one occasion.
If you’ve worn shorts and a parka at the same time,
You may live in Canada. OK- never done this myself but I’ve seen it happen far too often. Canadians are weird.
If you’ve had a lengthy telephone conversation with someone who dialed a wrong number,
You may live in Canada. Yup- not sure you can call it lengthy but we did talk about “Felicia” for a little while. Also did this in a text, except I was the person texting the wrong number. They were very nice & we had a lovely discussion about the issue I was dealing with at the time.
If ‘Vacation’ means going anywhere South of Detroit for the weekend,
You may live in Canada. Well, I’m at the wrong end of the country for Detroit, but if it’s anywhere south of Calgary then yes- total vacation.
If you measure distance in hours,
You may live in Canada ummm…hello??? Is this not normal? Seriously. Doesn’t everybody do this? We’re the only ones?
If you know several people who have hit a deer more than once,
You may live in Canada. Yes- we hit a lot of deer while driving on the highways. I myself have hit a moose. Last thing I thought before I hit it was- “thats not a deer”
If you have switched from ‘Heat’ to ‘A/C’ in the same day and back again,
You may live in Canada.Oh I do this all the time! I really do!
If you can drive 90 km/hr through 2 feet of snow during a raging blizzard without flinching,
You may live in Canada. Ya- I don’t know if I go 90 but I’ve driven in some CRA-AZY weather on some CRA-AZY roads.
If you install security lights on your house and garage, but leave both unlocked,
You may live in Canada. Ugh- don’t even get me started.
If you carry jumper cables in your car and your wife knows how to use them,
You may live in Canada. I’ve never had to use jumper cables though my dad did show me once how to use them. I DO know how to fix our furnace when it stops working. Very important for me as I’m cold ALL THE TIME.
If you design your kid’s Halloween costume to fit over a snowsuit,
You may live in Canada.Well….ya!!!! Otherwise they would get frostbite from the cold. I stay in the car. While it’s running.
If the speed limit on the highway is 80 km — you’re going 95 and everybody is passing you,
You may live in Canada.True story. Except I’m probably the one thats passing people.
If driving is better in the winter because the potholes are filled with snow,
You may live in Canada. HAHA!!!…..yup
If you know all 4 seasons: Almost winter, Winter, Still winter, and road construction,
You may live in Canada.Ugh- don’t get me started on this either.
If you have more kilometers on your snow blower than your car,
You may live in Canada. I don’t have a snow blower. I shovel the driveway myself. Its an especially good workout when the snow bank is higher than me. Which isn’t hard as I’m lucky if I’m 5’2″.
If you find -2 degrees ‘a little chilly’,
You may live in Canada. What?? That’s warm!
Here’s the photos! Click on them to see an enlarged clearer image. As always, I would love to hear your comments below!