artwork

Valentine’s Day Postcards

the artyologist, valentine's day postcards

It is February, and you know what that means: it’s time for my favourite holiday- Valentine’s Day! I know that some people- OK a lot of people- hate Valentine’s Day, but I’ve never really been able to figure out why. It has recently come to my attention though, in a conversation on Instagram, that in many countries around the world, Valentine’s Day is a holiday that strictly celebrates only romantic love. Well, of course that is how it started off back when the Victorians “invented” the holiday. Originally Valentine’s day was a feast day honouring St. Valentinus- and there are many different legends of why that came to be (who really knows?) However, over time it originated into a holiday celebrating love, where couples would exchange hearts, flowers, confectionery and love letters or “valentines”. By the time the 19th century came about, the Victorians, who were were obsessed with everything to do with romance and courtship, helped to turn it into the holiday we recognize today- where St. Valentinus is quite forgotten, but hearts and flowers and chocolates abound!

Even though the holiday was originally a celebration of only romantic love, over time, in Canada (and the USA I think too) it has turned into a day to celebrate all forms of love. When I was in elementary school, we always brought valentines to exchange with our classmates, and often had a party too. (Because really, who doesn’t want an excuse to eat pink heart shaped cookies and cakes?!) Nowadays, I hear the term “Galentines Day” circulating around, which has gotten fairly popular in the last few years; the idea being spending the day with your best girl friends instead of focusing on only romantic love. Even if you don’t have an opportunity for romance in your life right now, (I don’t) that’s no reason to dismiss Valentine’s Day as “Single’s Awareness Day”. Yes, romantic love is a beautiful thing, but having a holiday to celebrate all different kinds of love is a very nice idea too, I think. There are so many different kinds of love in the world, such as agape which is the love of man for God, and the love that God has for his children, eros or romantic love, philia, the beautiful love between friends, and storge which is familial love- just to name a few. Why should Valentine’s Day celebrate only eros, when there are so many more kinds of love in the world that are worth celebrating? I have always had that mindset about the day- and have always used it as a chance to send cards to friends and family and celebrate philia and storge love. Sometimes in past years, like with last year’s cards I’ve used the chance to highlight God’s agape love. And don’t forget that heart shaped cake too; which perhaps is an example of philautia- self love! 😉

Because Valentine’s Day is such a Victorian holiday, I usually make cards inspired by the era, so I thought I would show you all the cards I made and sent this year. Making and mailing valentines cards is such an old fashioned tradition, which is probably why it appeals to me so much 🙂

And, I also thought that since I can’t send all of you dear readers a Valentine of your own (I really wish I could!), it would be fun to share a Valentine’s card with you all in the form of a download! Just in case you haven’t gotten a card for someone special, but would like to give them one this year, I have a design I created a few years ago which is my Valentine’s Day card to you! I hope you enjoy it and I’d love to know if you decide to use it too!

So, is Valentine’s Day a strictly “romantic” holiday where you live? Or do you celebrate friends and family and all of the heart shaped things? And, do you make your own Valentine’s cards?

Click here to download my free Valentine’s Day Card!

the artyologist, writing valentine's day postcards

the artyologist, stack of valentine's day cards

the artyologist, four valentine's postcards

the artyologist, valentine's cards backs and fronts

the artyologist, peony and valentine's postcards

the artyologist, postcards ready to go, envelopes

Here Comes The Sun

Here Comes The Sun, the artyologist, frosty day

Remember that rime frost that I posted back in November? Well, these pictures were taken the very next day. One day the cold fog blew in and froze the world into a beautiful sparkling white wonderland, and the next, the sun came out from behind the clouds and melted it all away.

Rarely have I seen as beautiful sight as a bright sky blue backdrop behind frosty white trees glittering in the sunlight. I was glad when I noticed that the sun was peeking out that day, because by the end of the day, the frost had completely melted off, and we were left with bare branches again. But we didn’t have the bare branches for long, as the area I live in is very foggy, so we are always guaranteed some good winter frosts. In fact, the frost blew in a couple of days ago and the world is encased in sparkling diamonds again. I don’t think the frost will melt off for quite a while either, as we are currently in very cold temperatures (-30 degrees Celsius right now!) so unless there is a strong wind, it’s going to last for a while. In weather like this, I’m happy to look out my window and enjoy the view, without feeling the need to brave the cold in order to get some photographs! Photos would be nice but. . . 😉

Here Comes The Sun, the artyologist, frosted tree tops

Here Comes The Sun, the artyologist, frosted grasses

Here Comes The Sun, the artyologist, frosted tree tops and graineries

Here Comes The Sun, the artyologist, chickadee friend

Here Comes The Sun, the artyologist, tree over the rooftop

Here Comes The Sun, the artyologist, frosted lacey grass

On the Edge of Winter: The Rime Frost

graineries-red, the edge of winter, the artyologist

Sometimes, when you get up and look out the window as you start a new day, you just think “Wow” and quickly grab a coat and your camera and run out the door to take pictures. Sometimes you are even in such a rush that you don’t grab a touque or gloves, and once you get out the door you realize just how cold that wind is too. But, the sacrifices one must make, are totally worth it on days like this. 😉 These photos are from a week ago, when we had such an incredibly beautiful few days of frost. I recently discovered the differences between “hoar frost’ and “rime frost”, and all these years what I thought was hoar frost, is actually rime frost. Rime frost is when water droplets, usually from a heavy fog, freeze to the outer surfaces of objects creating a white hard ice. It is often blown in with a wind and sometimes creates bizarre ice formations. Hoar frost is when frost grains grow larger than a regular frost, and is common around open areas of water.

The pictures I got on this day are of a heavy rime frost, when the world was white and beautiful. The fog was still in close too, and it created such a soft, quiet and eerie atmosphere. The frost has since melted off, as soon as the sunshine came out the next day, but it was amazing to see for the few days it was here.

rime frost on line of trees, edge of winter, the artyologist

rime frost on branch and pine tree, edge of winter, the artyologist

Here you can see how the wind blew the fog in from one direction, creating the horizontal ice formations.

red-shed, rime frost, the artyologist

grasses, edge of winter, the artyologist

view-of-the-valley, edge of winter, the artyologist

chicken-wire-and-red-branch, the artyologist

keys, rime frost, the artyologist

lamppost, rime frost, the artyologist

It’s Narnia! Ok, it’s not a lamppost, but close. . .

tree-and-sky, rime frost, the edge of winter, the artyologist

overhanging-trees, edge of winter, rime frost, the artyologist

rime frost on-pine, the artyologist

Here you can see that the pine tree was not completely covered in ice higher up, as the fog must have not swirled in that direction.

Have you ever seen a rime frost? Or a hoar frost?

Ps. You may have noticed that I have not been as active on here lately, or on the internet in general. I have been pretty overwhelmed, stressed, driven insane, busy getting ready for the Christmas craft sales I mentioned I would be in a few months ago, but with one down, and only one more to go (this Saturday), I am hoping that life will be back to “normal” soon. Although, then we’ll be right into Christmas time and so perhaps things won’t slow down at all. . . . 😉

Watercolours Lately: At the Farmer’s Market

Watercolours Lately: At the Farmer's Market, the artyologist

A few weeks ago my sister decided to get a table at the local farmer’s market to sell some of her handcrafted jewelry. It went so well for her, that she decided to get a table the next week as well, and she asked if I wanted to share the cost of a table, and sell some of my watercolours. I said yes, but I only had 3 greeting cards ready to sell- so that meant a whole lot of painting over the weekend! A few years ago, I did up some painted cards, but I had really gotten out of the habit. I haven’t been painting as much lately as I would like to. In fact, the last time I picked up my watercolours and my brush was way back in February when I made Valentine’s cards. Sometimes it is so easy to neglect the things that we love doing… why is that I wonder?

I was a bit nervous to start again, wondering if I had perhaps forgotten technique, and I was afraid that I would end up with some kindergarden style finger paintings, but surprisingly, I got right back into the swing of things, and had a great time making these up. Actually, I looked at some of the paintings I made a few years ago, and I like how these turned out a lot better. I got some new finer art pens a couple of months ago 0.5 mm instead of 0.7 mm, and it made a big difference!

Watercolours Lately: At the Farmer's Market, the artyologist

I didn’t really do very well at the market, as it was a slower day, and I think people were there mainly for the fresh garden vegetables. (To be honest, that is why I go to the market too!) However, I did sell a few cards, and I got some good feedback, so I am planning on sharing a table again at the Christmas market. I think things will go better then, as people are looking to buy at Christmas time! Anyways, even if the cards didn’t sell very well, I had a lot of fun making them, and I am glad that I had a reason to get back into painting. Now, let’s keep it up right?

Do you do watercolours, or any other kind of artwork? Do you have any fun hobbies that you find yourself neglecting?

Watercolours Lately: At the Farmer's Market, the artyologist

Watercolours Lately: At the Farmer's Market, the artyologist

Watercolours Lately: At the Farmer's Market, the artyologist

ps. Things have been rather busy and hectic around here the past few weeks; sometimes life just has a way of getting in the way of things and I’ve been a bit quieter around here, and on the internet in general. Next week I am writing two different guest posts, which I am very excited to share with you. As the two ladies I am writing for, are going on holidays, I thought it was perhaps a good time for me to have a break, myself (and catch up on reading blogs, as I just haven’t had the time lately for that!) So I won’t be posting here next week, however I will let you know when my guest posts go live, so you can go and check them out on the other blogs!