Channeling Sam Cannon

While looking for something else I discovered Sam Cannon’s artwork and fell in love with his imagery and calligraphy. His eloquently realized animals, with beautifully hand-lettered quotations, spoke to a desire in me to do likewise. His tiny Petal Paper originals were particularly appealing.

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When I looked into channeling his style I found I was fresh out of Petal Paper, so I just made my own version by wetting watercolor paper and painting  loose leaves and flowers.

Using these backgrounds as inspiration, I added figures and quotes that particularly resonated with me, keeping faithfully to Sam Cannon’s style.

As the paintings developed I added more leaves, flowers and stems around the figures and calligraphy, making the most of my watercolors.

I love the distinctive Sam Cannon ‘font’ and line arrangement. I experimented with different tools for the calligraphy. flowersetsy

I tried a more traditional opaque gouache approach with the dip pen on brown paper for this garden painting.

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My favorite Thoreau quote is painted with white ink and a brush on the woodpile. These chilly chickadees are drawn from the flocks right outside my window here in Vermont.

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I am using Schminke Aqua Bronze Rich Gold and Silver gouache to paint the metallic accents.

I learn by copying and experimenting and evolving. I hope to keep moving ever further from copying Sam and more into being entirely me.

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As always, you can find my work for sale at my Etsy shop.

 

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Life with Dogs: Part 9 Lucy

Children and puppies both start out small.

RowanBaby:webChildren grow fairly slowly, year by year, and only reach their full size in a couple of decades.

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Puppies start out small too, but grow SO much faster.

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Here is Rowan at almost 7 years and Lucy at age 12 weeks. 

Puppies are pretty much full grown in a year. This transformation provided the inspiration for my book When Lucy Goes Out Walking.

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Starting in January, the pup in the book grows month by month.

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By March she is leggy and adolescent looking.

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By July, she’s a mostly grown companion on a grassy hill.

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and by rainy November she can carry groceries and trot along through puddles.

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The weather turns cold again and this time Lucy leaves “big dog prints” in first December snows.

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A year passes and here is Rowan at almost 8 years and Lucy at 12 months. What a difference a year made for one small pup!

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Happy Birthday, Dear Rowan!

24 years ago I was waiting.

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I was expecting another child, sex unknown. I knew this one was big and strong.

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The kicking and rolling were constant. Working on a long, circus mural on the only available flat surface-the floor- was a huge challenge.

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But it was fun wondering who would arrive. I decided to design a new birth announcement print to celebrate.

I loved this excerpt from A Poem for a New Born Baby Girl, by Grace Hazard Conkling.

“Now from the coasts of morning pale
Comes safe to port thy tiny sail.
Now have we seen by early sun,
Thy miracle of life begun.”

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And soon, I was able to fill in the details:

Rowan Wolff Russell

 born September 25th, 1990

 in San Francisco, California

8 pounds, 12 ounces,

21 inches

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Happy Birthday, Rowan. You were SO worth waiting for.

I love you!