I don't make New Year's resolutions. I plan and project what I'm doing and work at my goals all the time so I don't see any reason to ......
But it's sometimes fun to look back at what I hoped that I would do...and see how that went.
I was wrong.
I didn't need to think about whether or not I would start teaching classes again.....because it wasn't the right time....and still isn't, so I don't have to worry about that for now.
I didn't need to decide if I was going to do some online classes....because I didn't have enough time to do that!
I didn't need to work out a new display idea for shows.....because there weren't any shows.
But you know what I did? I worked. ALL YEAR. I can't believe how busy this year has been....many many commissions (thank you!), online work, communicating with customers, trying to keep up to date on social media, took some on-line watercolours & acrylic workshops, took an in-person acrylic class in Chatsworth, having new prints made, deciding on & ordering new cards in May and October, setting up Print on Demand section in my online store, holding 2 or 3 'off the porch' sales, 2 pop up multi-vendor sales, Christmas Open House, took part in several 'online' markets, operated the online store on my website and Etsy shop...which both were busy almost all year (I think there was 1 month that was quiet)....and still trying to find time to paint new paintings! I did get some done, although not as many as I'd hoped...but I was painting constantly.
So I would say that it's been a very good year. I've met so many really nice people and been able to share my art with so many new people.
How can you ask for more!
Happy New Year and all the best for 2022! ..... Please, be better than 20 and 21!
Well, there's a lot that's new!
I recently started adding Print On Demand (POD) items to my website!
These are items printed by a third party (in Canada or US) and they ship the item directly to you. Unfortunately, some of the items do take 2-3 weeks to arrive. It's a bit of the Canada-US postal delay situation (which is always questionable, but crazy in Nov/Dec) If you are considering ordering anything, please do so as soon as you can. Cut off times will be Dec 4 for many items.
It's exciting to see my work on so many different products.
Here are a few of them:
Plus...laptop covers, fanny packs, bath mats......
I've only been able to post a few things in my online store (GIFTS & MORE).....but most items are available in any product. Have a look at my art (in the Prints...or Cards...or Originals section) and then contact me if you see one that you would like. I will then do computer work/mock up for it and put it on the website for sale.
At this time, only Canadian customers can order directly from the website. But all you would have to do is contact me with the items that you want, I would calculate the shipping and give you the total, sending you an invoice from Square, my payment processor, where you will make your credit card payment at the secure link. It's quite easy!
Have a look...see if something catches your eye. Maybe you can have mug...or puzzle and enjoy Debbie Ellis Watercolour in a different way!
Well, actually I didn't GO shopping....so much as SHOPPING came to me!
A couple of weeks ago there was a very determined knock on the front door. (I honestly don't usually answer the door...I will check out the window to see if I know who it is.....I know, crazy old lady)
Imagine my surprise when I saw 3 young girls, probably about 6-7 yrs old. Each one was holding a piece of paper. It was neighbourhood girls, although I don't really know them, I've seen them playing. The bravest of the 3 said "We're going around the neighbourhood and selling our art. Do you want to buy one of our paintings? .....But it's free! It doesn't cost anything."
I replied, "wow, that's really neat! Do you know what? I'm an artist too!" Well, the look on their faces was so funny. They were shocked. Then they all started to chatter "you're an artist? you paint? really? She's an artist......whisper, whisper"
So I thought I'd have some more fun with them and said "do you want to see some of my work?" Well they sure did. I sent them over to the garage door and said, I'll be over there in a minute. I went and got a few of my prints and took them out to show them. The look on their faces again was priceless. They were shocked...again! "wow, how do you do that? you painted that? that's so good!" etc etc.
But back to business...the reason for their visit. I had to pick one to 'buy'. They each held out their paintings and I asked them to tell me about them. I had to make a decision. I realized after, that I did wrong. I didn't want to pick just one...and maybe I shouldn't have. I chose Lily's painting and I explained why....I liked the fall colours in it
What fun! Good for those girls that they're enjoying their artwork so much that they got the idea to 'sell' some art to the neighbours! I love it!
Vacations......sigh ....It seems like a long time since we've been on a vacation. And I don't see that changing for us in the near future. Personally, I'm speaking.....I know lots of people have been able to take vacations this summer..finally.
I recently discovered some photos that I had from a wonderful holiday in near Boothbay Harbour in Maine way back in the 80's. It's a lot like Georgian Bay there - the rock formations. I had painted a picture from there several years ago, but I was happy to discover a few more photos. So I decided to paint them.
That got me to thinking about how nice it is to be able to paint my vacation memories. I've always taken a lot of photos when I travelled. And then I got in to the scrapbooking craze. But those albums take up way too much room...and I got too busy. But I kept stock piling the photos, and papers, and stickers, and souvenirs ready to paint my vacations! Several years ago I sold all my scrapbooking materials in a yard sale. I made a few 'memory books' from Blacks or Apple and I enjoy looking at them too. But, the ones that I have painted mean the most to me.
I certainly haven't painted everywhere I've been across Canada, the US, and Caribbean islands. But here are a few.
I just realized how boring vacation photos are....to everyone else! I hope that you didn't feel that way just now.
I actually do paint a lot of 'vacation places' not just for me, but for others as well. I have done some as commissions, but because most of the places that I've been are popular places for so many people, I have found that many people have been able to re-live THEIR vacation memories through my artwork. Take a look on the website online store for more. Some have prints available too!
Enjoy your vacation memories.....wherever they may be!
Well here we are at the start of the 2nd half of 2021. It's certainly looking better than the first half. Although things aren't quite 'back to normal' we are going to be enjoying the re-opening. At this time, Waterloo Region has not moved to Step 2, although Guelph has. Because I'm involved in both areas, I can't make definite plans yet.
So I'm still pondering and thinking......what will I do?
Yikes! That's enough! I don't need to list any more!!!!
Last summer I decided to try acrylic painting. It is very different from watercolours.....backwards I might say.....but I guess some would say that watercolours is backwards. In watercolour you paint from light to dark, because the watercolour paints are somewhat transparent, so you can't cover up a darker colour with a lighter colour. But what an amazing and fun thing....in acrylic painting YOU CAN DO THAT! And what freedom that gives. Wow. I took 2 classes in Chatsworth with Peter John Reid and this past winter, I did a Zoom class with Marianne Broome from Schomberg.
This week I had a fun time with my "Mother's Day Draw" for a free print...for your mom or for you! I figure we all need a bit of a treat these days! It was for my Facebook Followers. I asked them to tell me which print they would choose, and why.....whether it was for their mom, or for themselves.
Many people entered the draw and I was quite moved by many of their responses....a favourite place, a reminder of something or...someone.......But the one that made the biggest impression on me, was actually the one that I drew. (Honestly, I did not look at the names as I drew them out). I did end up drawing names and giving out 5 prints.....I really wanted more people to win that painting that would mean so much to them.
The first winning ticket was Linda Ashfield, a friend of mine and retired Presbyterian minister. Her words emphasized the amazing thing that what I choose to paint says something to the viewer that I don't even think about when I'm painting it. This particular painting that I did this winter was from a photo that I took a couple of summers ago. I caught sight of this butterfly on the thistle and liked the bright contrast. I had to crouch down a bit to take the photo, so that I could see enough of the butterfly. Unfortunately, it was right in front of an ugly grey brick wall. I didn't worry about that...I knew that I could change it. I decided to make the beautiful blue sky as another contrast. It seemed to be a very happy picture (which I have to admit I like painting)...something that might make people smile. Here's what Linda had to say:
I would choose your butterfly and thistle print. There are a few reasons: personally the thistle speaks to my Scottish heritage and the butterfly my Christian faith. But it strikes me that it is very much a picture filled with hope. Covid has brought a lot of thorns and thistles into all of our lives - but in the shutdowns and sadness there has been moments of peace and hope that float in just when we need them. Your picture seems to be looking up towards the sky - which to me is a huge indicator of good things for the future (dare I say post covid?)
Thank you for sharing that Linda. I think that you are going to enjoy your new print! I might even put one up on my wall!
But last week I had a message from S. her boyfriend loved it! But he finally, reluctantly told her that there was one problem! Apparently when he lived in the house it was red brick.....and the current photo that I had to work with .....well it was white siding!
They wondered if there was any chance that I could change it! Well.....that's a funny thing about watercolour....Maybe you can...maybe you can't! Since watercolour paint that I use is transparent, you can only put darker colours over top of lighter colours (or white).....you can't go from dark to light like you can in acrylic or oil. Well weren't they lucky! Because it was an easy fix to make that white siding into red brick! Now he's happy to have a painting that really DOES look like the house that he grew up in! And I actually like the new version better too!
.....Commissions! As I was telling someone about them today, I realized that there are 2 things that I enjoy about them. #1 They almost always challenge me to paint something very different than I would choose, and #2 I like the way they reach people on an emotional level.
This past Nov/Dec, I was so pleased to be able to do several commissions, most as Christmas gifts. Each painting has a story about why it was important or what it meant. Or there's a good story about the ordering of it! Here is the best one yet!
Later that same day, the Mr. also ordered a painting of their amazingly renovated house for his wife for Christmas! What was I to do! I couldn't tell him that HE was already going to be receiving it! So, since I knew her better...and she was first....I told her what had happened. What a laugh we had, but what to do. She thought about it for a few days, and then suggested that SHE would give HIM a painting of the original house as it was when they moved in. Then HE could give HER the renovated version. And that's what happened. And they both loved both of the paintings! They now have matching frames and will be hanging on the wall together.
I love that! My favourite story!