Thursday, August 19, 2021

Stanley Park, Coyote Town

In Vancouver we have the world's longest uninterrupted waterfront path or as we call it when we're in a hurry, the Seawall. I live right next door so I get out quite a bit. Yesterday I went for a ride. About halfway around I look up and see a coyote. I'm just registering “Oh, coyote.' when suddenly he's chasing me. I pick up speed and he's running alongside on the upper path. I guess he doesn't like the seawall so he's staying up there, or I think he is anyway. Within seconds the trees cut him off from view. I'm peddling fast now and soon realize that he's given up – hopefully thinking a squirrel will be easier to get. There's been more than 35 coyote attacks in Stanley Park this year, so it makes you a bit jumpy. Guess I'll bring my whistle tomorrow.*
*Artist rendering due to not being able to get off my bike and take a pic.

Tuesday, July 13, 2021

 Who knew tea towels would be a sideline business but here we go with a new design. People liked the bird's eye view I did of Vancouver's West End so thought I'd follow it up with Stanley Park. I thought I was just going to be drawing trees and raccoons but there's a surprising amount of things going on there. And an incredible history. I wanted to be sure to acknowledge the ancestral lands that Stanley Park sits on. X̱wáýx̱way (in English it sounds a bit like Whoiwhoi) was a First Nations village site.  Before Europeans arrived there were many inhabitants including the Squamish, Musqueam and Tseil-waututh. It's history now but great to see the awareness growing. 

Here's the first image that got me started. 

Depending on the reaction I get I'm thinking of either Yaletown or Kitsilano next. 

Tuesday, June 22, 2021

On the Line

Nothing like receiving a copy of your new book on hockey, on the hottest day of the year! I was very happy to receive On the Line (Pajama Press) written by my good friend Kari-Lynn Winters.  It reminded me of university days where I had a brief period on the hockey team. This story is really about teamwork, stewardship and learning our own way to play. 

Summer has started and publishing often slows over this time. This last year has been a challenge for all of us but there are definite signs we're returning to some kind of normal. 

I'm hoping to get traveling again. After a year and a half of not going anywhere I'm ready and rarin' to go. 

So happy summer and happy trails to all.


Sunday, February 28, 2021

 Interesting times indeed! Spring is just around the corner and everybody is still masked and secluded. But soon patios will open. 

My author/illustrator career has slowed down as publishers learn to navigate their new situations. I am happy to be working with the wonderful Pajama Press in Toronto on two books. I want to thank Kari-Lynn Winters for putting my name forward to illustrate her clever and funny story. It's a special gift to be able to work with such a good friend.

Speaking of people I care about I'm sad and happy to be finishing my book with Groundwood. But all things come to an end and soon the book will be out. I hope to be able to show off the cover art soon. 

Finally to my new second career as a purveyor of t-shirts, tea towels and cards. Who knew this would happen but it definitely falls in the category of 'where might you go in a pandemic'. I've had good reactions to images I put out there so I decided to follow through and suddenly I have a second business. Many years ago I co-owned a greeting card company so I'm aware how time consuming that can be when you do it all yourself. Even with a business partner who worked just as hard, I wrote and drew all the cards as well as shipped and ran the warehouse.  So suddenly, in my west end apartment, I have a mini warehouse. Still not sure how happy I am about that but there you go. Here's the latest image, (for people not in Canada, this is my take on 'Rosie the Riveter' as Dr. Bonnie Henry - our Provincial Health Officer/Hero)  yet to be decided where it will work best - t-shirt, tea towel, greeting card or all the above? 

Monday, February 8, 2021

 There's a couple of stores in Vancouver that I love. Well it might have to do with the fact that they're carrying my merchandise but I think they both have great products, definitely worth dropping by for a look around. Supporting local artists at times like these is worth celebrating too. They're both practically Vancouver landmarks. Kimprints (on Denman St. and in Gastown in Vancouver) have a whole range of products I've made, from t-shirts to tea towels plus tons of other cool stuff. Then a great store called Canadian Crafts on Robson St. has been kind enough to carry t-shirts, tea towels and more. If you drop in, tell them I sent you!

Thursday, January 21, 2021

 In case anybody thinks I'm not doing books - fear not! I have two coming out soon with Groundwood and, some wonderful people I've just started working with, Pajama Press.   In the meantime I've done another illustration with the idea of putting it on various products like cards and tea towels. This is my neighbourhood in Vancouver. In the summer it's pretty much a resort town. I grew up here and love to see the city growing and changing. I know a lot of people don't like that but I think Vancouver has the perfect balance - wilderness 10 minutes one way and a nice selection of cafes 5 minutes the other way. What more could you want. Of course right now we're still not open yet due to the pandemic but I'm pretty well convinced that's not going to last forever.