Weekly News 09-09-2020

weekly news

(This is a news letter I sent out. If you’d like to receive fresh news every week, sign up here! The full newsletter contains surprises and is delivered once a week to your mailbox.)

Atelier News

Hello friends,

I hope this finds you happy and healthy!

We have funded 14% of my book!

Thank you so much to all of you who already backed my project and shared it with your friends. It makes all the difference, and I’m incredibly grateful!

For those of you who are discovering this project, well, I’ve written and illustrated a book. Now, I need your help to get it to the printing press, and that’s why I created a kickstarter campaign! If you want to help me out and receive exclusive goodies that will not be available after the campaign, it’s now or never!

And if you feel like it, you can also transfer this message to all your friends! That really helps me out a lot!

New in Store

The sale is still running, and I’m getting very ready for Halloween!

I made you some festive and magical prints and cards to celebrate Mabon and Samhain! I know your little witchy hearts are singing!

Click on the picture for more details!

One last thing,

A pop hit made medieval, why not?

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Book review: Frida Kahlo, An illustrated Life, by Maria Hesse

Book Reviews

(En Français ici)

A few summers ago, I discovered Frida Kahlo, her immense work and her fantastical life. Through books, I looked at her paintings and was mesmerized by the detail and lushness of her scenes. Some painting are incredibly rich and lively, while others leave you with a sense of foreboding and violence. When I learned more about the woman behind the artist, I was touched by her determination to always paint and love despite all the medical and personal difficulties she had to endure. All this to say, I was thrilled to find the beautifully illustrated biography by amazing artist Maria Hesse: Frida Kahlo, An Illustrated Life.

One of the things I love most about Maria Hesse is that she has such a distinctive style. In all her work, you can feel the influence of Frida Kahlo, which made this a “perfect fit” project. I love how she uses colours and also how playful, a bit naive and raw her compositions are.

As for this book, I really like that you can recognize real pictures that were used as source image in some of the illustrations. It makes it a great book if you already know about Frida Kahlo: it feels like elements of real life are winking at you. Of course, it also makes for a great introduction book to the artist as Hesse takes you through her entire life.

As the story is written in the first person, it feels like Frida herself is telling you about her life, her great love for Diego Rivera, and all the many difficulties she endured. Hesse also did an amazing job at reproducing Frida’s paintings in her distinctive style and integrating them to the story where they are most relevant. It gives Kahlo’s work a more personal perspective, and it helps to make links between the artist’s life and how it influenced her work.

Hesse also integrates lovely details that give each page a vibrant and lively feel that reflects the intensity with which Frida Kahlo lived her life. It’s a touching read and a great book to flip through for the simple joy of appreciating the illustrations.

Overall, I think anyone who is interested in art will enjoy this book. I’d recommend this book to adults and teenagers as many of the elements of Kahlo’s life and work may be a bit intense for younger readers. Still, it is a book I go back to when I find myself lacking inspiration or motivation. The colours, the amazingly strong woman and the feeling of great excitement I get from reading this book always send me back running to my drawing desk in awe and admiration.

Frida Kahlo, an illustrated life, by Maria Hesse, University of Texas Press

Also available in Spanish (original version): Frida Kahlo, una biographia

And in French: Frida Kahlo, une biographie


Book review: Frida Kahlo, une biographie, par Maria Hesse

Il y a quelques étés, j’ai découvert Frida Kahlo, son immense travail et sa vie fantastique. A travers les livres, j’ai regardé ses peintures et j’ai été fasciné par les détails et la luxuriance de ses scènes. Certaines peintures sont incroyablement riches et vivantes, tandis que d’autres vous laissent un sentiment d’appréhension et de violence. Lorsque j’en ai appris plus sur la femme qui se cache derrière l’artiste, j’ai été touché par sa détermination à toujours peindre et à aimer malgré toutes les difficultés médicales et personnelles qu’elle a dû endurer. Tout cela pour dire que j’ai été ravie de trouver la biographie magnifiquement illustrée de la remarquable artiste Maria Hesse : Frida Kahlo, une biographie.

Une des choses que j’aime le plus chez Maria Hesse, c’est qu’elle a un style si particulier. Dans son oeuvre, vous pouvez sentir l’influence de Frida Kahlo, ce qui a fait de ce projet de livre un “perfect fit”. J’aime la façon dont elle utilise les couleurs et aussi le caractère ludique, un peu naïf mais aussi sauvage de ses compositions.

Quant à ce livre, j’aime beaucoup que l’on puisse reconnaître des images réelles qui ont été utilisées comme image source dans certaines des illustrations. Cela en fait un excellent livre si vous connaissez déjà Frida Kahlo : on a l’impression que des éléments de la vie réelle nous font un clin d’œil. Bien sûr, c’est aussi un excellent livre d’introduction à l’artiste, car Hesse vous fait découvrir toute sa vie.

Comme l’histoire est écrite à la première personne, on a l’impression que Frida elle-même nous raconte sa vie, son grand amour pour Diego Rivera et toutes les difficultés qu’elle a endurées. Hesse a également fait un travail remarquable en reproduisant les peintures de Frida dans son style caractéristique et en les intégrant à l’histoire là où elles sont les plus pertinentes. Cela donne au travail de Kahlo une perspective plus personnelle, et cela permet de faire le lien entre la vie de l’artiste et la façon dont elle a influencé son travail.

Hesse intègre également de jolis détails qui donnent à chaque page un aspect vivant et vibrant qui reflète l’intensité avec laquelle Frida Kahlo a vécu sa vie. C’est une lecture touchante et un livre à feuilleter pour le simple plaisir d’apprécier les illustrations.

Dans l’ensemble, je pense que tous ceux qui s’intéressent à l’art apprécieront ce livre. Je recommande ce livre aux adultes et aux adolescents car de nombreux éléments de la vie et de l’œuvre de Kahlo peuvent être un peu intenses pour de jeunes lecteurs. Néanmoins, c’est un livre auquel je reviens lorsque je me trouve en manque d’inspiration ou de motivation. Les couleurs, la femme étonnamment forte et le sentiment de grande excitation que je ressens en lisant ce livre me font toujours retourner en courant à ma table à dessin, émerveillée et admirative.

Frida Kahlo, une biographie, par Maria Hesse, Editions Presque Lune

Disponible en espagnol (version originale): Frida Kahlo, una biographia, Lumen

Et aussi en anglais: Frida Kahlo, an illustrated life, University of Texas Press

Weekly News 09-02-2020

weekly news

(This is a news letter I sent out. If you’d like to receive fresh news every week, sign up here! The full newsletter contains surprises and is delivered once a week to your mailbox.)

Atelier News

Hello friends,

I hope this finds you happy and healthy!

Well, the kickstarter is live! Thank you so much to all of you who already backed my project and shared it with your friends. It makes all the difference, and I’m incredibly grateful!

New in Store

The sale is still running, and I added these pretty colored book labels as well!

Click on the picture for more details!

Something soft,

One last thing,

A little pep talk never hurt nobody.

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Book review: Cher corps, je t’aime, par Jessica Sanders et Carol Rossetti

Book Reviews

(In English Here!)

En ce début d’année, alors que tout le monde, ou presque, prend la résolution de mieux manger, de dire adieu au chocolat et de faire du sport TOUS-CLAP-LES-CLAP-JOURS-CLAP, je vous propose un album tout en douceur sur l’amour-propre, l’acceptation du corps et la relation au corps: Cher corps, je t’aime de Jessica Sanders et illustré par Carol Rossetti. Puisque j’ai d’abord découvert cet album en français, je commence en français, mais ce livre a été écrit en anglais puis traduit.

Encore une fois, ce qui m’a attiré vers ce livre ce sont avant tout les illustrations. Voyez-vous, lorsque je dessine des personnages, ils ont tendance à tous avoir plus ou moins la même carrure, les mêmes nez, les mêmes corps. C’est quelque chose que j’aimerais beaucoup améliorer, mais ce n’est pas toujours évident de comprendre comment jouer avec les proportions, les formes, tout en gardant un ensemble harmonieux et agréable à regarder.

Carol Rossetti est une championne de l’illustration de corps variés et inclusifs. À chaque page, on découvre des personnages biens vivants et diversifiés, et “juste” ça, ça fait du bien. Après tout, on ne vit pas dans un monde où tout le monde est pareil, alors pourquoi l’illustrer ainsi?

Cet album, écrit par une travailleuse sociale et militante féministe, est un bon rappel que notre corps, c’est plus qu’un objet à exhiber, juger, comparer et retravailler. L’auteur encourage les lecteurs à apprécier leurs corps justement pour leurs diversités, leurs imperfections, et leurs capacités à faire toutes sortes de choses fantastiques.

Présentant des outils de travail personnel, ce livre est parfait pour repenser notre relation au corps et passer du négatif au positif. Il agit aussi comme un bel outil pour les journées où on se sent “patate-oïde”, moche et mal-foutu. Les illustrations douces à l’aquarelle en font un livre paisible où on peut observer une myriade de personnages féminins dans toutes sortes d’activités et de situations.

Bref, ce livre est un rappel important qu’avant d’être un problème à régler, nos corps sont des machines incroyables que l’on se doit d’apprécier, de valoriser et d’entretenir non pas pour les autres, mais par respect pour soi et parce que se sont nos corps qui nous permettent de tout faire et de tout expérimenter!

Cher corps, je t’aime, par Jessica Sanders et Carol Rossetti, Éditions Crackboom


Book review: Love your Body, by Jessica Sanders and Carol Rossetti

In this new year, when almost everyone is making the resolution to eat better, to say goodbye to chocolate and to do sports EVERY-CLAP-SINGLE-CLAP-DAY-CLAP, I offer you a very soft album on self-esteem, on body acceptance, and on the relationship we have to our bodies: Love your Body by Jessica Sanders and illustrated by Carol Rossetti. This book was written in English and then translated.

Once again, what attracted me to this book is, above all, the illustrations. You see, when I draw characters, they all tend to have more or less the same build, the same noses, the same bodies. It’s something I would love to improve, but it’s not always easy to understand how to play with proportions, shapes, while keeping a harmonious whole that is pleasing to the eye.

Carol Rossetti is a champion in the illustration of varied and inclusive bodies. On every page, we discover a variety of lively and diverse characters, and “just” that feels good. After all, we don’t live in a world where everyone is the same, so why illustrate it that way?

This album, written by a social worker and feminist activist, is a good reminder that our body is more than an object to be displayed, judged, compared and reworked. The author encourages readers to appreciate their bodies precisely for their diversity, their imperfections, and their ability to do all kinds of fantastic things.

Introducing tools for personal work, this book is perfect to rethink our relationship to the body and move from the negative to the positive. It also acts as a great tool for those days when we feel “patato-id “, ugly and sloppy. The soft watercolor illustrations make it a peaceful book where you can observe a myriad of female characters in all sorts of activities and situations.

In short, this book is an important reminder that before being a problem to be solved, our bodies are incredible machines that we must appreciate, value and maintain not for the sake of others, but out of respect for ourselves and because it is our bodies that allow us to do and experience everything!

Love your Body, by Jessica Sanders and Carol Rossetti, Frances Lincoln Children’s Books

Weekly News 08-26-2020

weekly news

(This is a news letter I sent out. If you’d like to receive fresh news every week, sign up here! The full newsletter contains surprises and is delivered once a week to your mailbox.)

Atelier News

Hello friends,

Hello friends,

I hope this finds you happy and healthy!

Only a few days left before I launch my Kickstarter campaign! It’s exciting, nerve-racking, and about a million other feelings!

I’m creating models of some of the rewards that will be available on Kickstarter. I wanted to dive deeper into the magical side of plants and explored some superstitions and rituals surrounding common plants. It was truly fascinating! It felt so great to be creating, drawing and getting ink on paper (and all over my desk, woops!). I’m really excited to share these with you!

New in Store

It’s time to get your Xmas cards! I’ve put many items on sale, so go check it out!

Click on the picture for more details!

I’m blogging…

Head over to the blog for more details on the Kickstarter rewards.

Click on the picture for more!

I read,

This week, I listened to The Lost Girls of Paris, by Pam Jenoff. It was such a good book! It explores the role of female spies during WWII in such a captivating way. You follow three different women: Mary, a spy; Eleanor, the leader of the program; and Grace who is trying to understand what happened to the spies after the war ended.

Through these three voices, Pam Jenoff weaves a fascinating story of resilience and sacrifice. I highly recommend it!

One last thing,

I’m taking you to Ireland… to do laundry!

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Weekly News 08-19-2020

weekly news

(This is a news letter I sent out. If you’d like to receive fresh news every week, sign up here! The full newsletter contains surprises and is delivered once a week to your mailbox.)

Atelier News

Hello friends,

I hope this finds you happy and healthy!

One word for you: KICKSTARTER! I’m working really hard to bring you a beautiful kickstarter page. It is more work than it seems!

This week, I created the project’s video which is a book trailer. It was a lot of fun imagining the ambiance and then going outside to film. It’s such a different way to present information! I cannot wait to share everything with you! In the meantime, you can still check out the pre-launch page and sign up to get updated as soon as the campaign launches on September 1st! 

I’m also nearing the end of my second book’s first draft. It is so much fun creating this project. Unlike my other projects, this one will be in French first. It’s unfamiliar for me, but it’s very nice seeing this book take shape page after page. Can you guess what it is about? Here’s a sneak peak!

New in Store

This week I’m bringing you these beautiful book label stickers. These are actually the first stickers I ever wanted to make. They just took a while to come into the real world! I love the idea of having special book labels for my favourite books. It brings a certain level of magic and beauty to well-loved objects.

These are available both in French and English!

Click on the picture for more details!

I’m blogging…

In case you missed it, I’ve been writing about my book on my blog. You can find behind the scenes and other fun info on the making of the book there!

Click on the sketchbook for more!

I read,

This week, I finished Michelle Obama’s book, Becoming. What a great read! Michelle’s voice is both relatable and inspiring. It is incredible to see how she grew in a modest family, studied hard and created a life for herself. It was also fascinating to see how she navigated her role of First Lady and how she worked to bring out positive change in her country.

It was a really inspiring read which made me want to learn more. So, if you haven’t read this book yet, I warmly recommend it.

One last thing,

I’ve been seeing a little hummingbird every morning this last month during breakfast, and it has given me all kinds of ideas for our garden next year. In the meantime, enjoy this unique pool party!

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Weekly News 08-12-2020

weekly news

(This is a news letter I sent out. If you’d like to receive fresh news every week, sign up here! The full newsletter contains surprises and is delivered once a week to your mailbox.)

Atelier News

Hello friends,

I hope this finds you happy and healthy!

Is it me or is it time going faster and faster this month? I’ve been working hard on my kickstarter campaign for my book. It’s been detailed work and a lot of computer time. Still, it’s so exciting to be working on my own project at my own pace.

While designing this campaign, I’ve been struggling a lot with what my monetary goal should be. Asking for money is always a bit icky, but in the end, it’s kinda the point of a Kickstarter! My dad reminded my that you only get what you ask for, and that really motivated me to ask for enough resources to really push this project forward. You can go check out the pre-launch page now. There’s not much available there yet, but you’ll be able to sign up to get first access when I do launch my campaign on (drum roll please) September 1st!

I’ve also been working hard on my next book. I don’t want to tell you too much about it yet because it’s still too young, but I’m really excited! It’s the first project of this kind I’m making, and once again I’m learning a lot as I go. Stay tuned for more!

New in Store

This week I’m bringing you these beautiful book label stickers. These are actually the first stickers I ever wanted to make. They just took a while to come into the real world! I love the idea of having special book labels for my favourite books. It brings a certain level of magic and beauty to well-loved objects.

These are available both in French and English!

Click on the picture for more details!

I read,

If you are in the mood for another family/psychological thriller/drama book, I’ve got your back. I’ve really been into these stories these last few months! This week, I bring you “Bring me Back” by B. A. Paris.

The story takes place in Scotland: there’s a creepy and isolated island, two sisters, and love. I’m not sure how to tell you about this book without giving anything away. Let’s see. No, you’ll have to read for yourself!

All I can say is that it is really good!

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Book review: Rose à petits pois, par Amélie Callot et Geneviève Godbout

Book Reviews

(In English Here!)

Il y a certains livres dont on a besoin pour se réchauffer le cœur et simplement passer un bon moment. Rose à petits pois, d’Amélie Callot et illustré par Geneviève Godbout, est l’un de ceux-là.

On suit Adèle pour qui le bonheur et la joie dépendent du soleil. Hors, lorsque la pluie arrive, Adèle, triste et démoralisée, ne met plus le nez dehors. Mystère, mystère, une série d’objets coquets et roses arrivent à chaque pluie et ajoute une touche de magie à ces journées bien grises.

L’histoire romantique et douillette donne envie de se blottir dans une couverture bien chaude et de profiter pleinement de l’univers tout en douceur qu’Amélie Callot a su créer. A cela s’ajoute les magnifiques illustrations de Geneviève Godbout également tout en douceur.

J’aime beaucoup le style de cette illustratrice car il est à la fois précis, gracieux et reconfortant. Les textures de crayons à colorier créent un effet de chaleur et donne a chaque image un petit côté rétro tout à fait approprié pour cet album.

La combinaison du texte et des images est vraiment parfaite car ils se marient sans efforts. La grâce de chaque personnage et le naturel des postures font de chaque page un vrai plaisir à dévorer.

Parfait pour tous les lecteurs romantiques à la recherche d’un peu de réconfort, ce livre saura plaire autant aux petits enfants qu’aux grands enfants. La jolie couverture et la mise en page soignée en font également un livre parfait à garder sur le bord de son fauteuil préféré.

Rose à petits pois, par Amélie Callot et Geneviève Godbout, Éditions La Pastèque


Book review: The Pink Umbrella, by Amélie Callot and Geneviève Godbout

There are certain books that you need to warm your heart and just have a good time. The Pink Umbrella, by Amélie Callot and illustrated by Geneviève Godbout, is one of those.

We follow Adele for whom happiness and joy depend on the sun. But when the rain comes, Adele, sad and demoralized, doesn’t put even a toe outside. Mystery, mystery, a series of pretty and pink objects arrive with each rain and add a touch of magic to these grey days.

The romantic and cozy story makes you want to snuggle up in a warm blanket and enjoy the soft universe Amélie Callot has created. To this is added the also wonderfully soft illustrations by Geneviève Godbout.

I really like this illustrator’s style because it is at the same time precise, graceful and comforting. The coloring pencil textures create a warm effect and give each picture a retro feel that is very appropriate for this album.

The combination of text and images is really perfect because they blend together effortlessly. The grace of each character and the naturalness of the postures make each page a real pleasure to devour.

Perfect for all romantic readers looking for a little comfort, this book will appeal to small children as well as big children. The pretty cover and the neat layout also make it a perfect book to keep on the edge of your favorite armchair.

The Pink Umbrella, par Amélie Callot et Geneviève Godbout, Penguin Random House

Weekly News 08-06-2020

weekly news

(This is a news letter I sent out. If you’d like to receive fresh news every week, sign up here! The full newsletter contains surprises and is delivered once a week to your mailbox.)

Atelier News

Hello friends,

I hope this finds you happy and healthy!

What a busy week! As you saw last week, I finally received some proof copies of my book, Agatha’s Journal. Well this week, I’m starting to work on promotional material and a kickstarter campaign. It’s a lot of work, and I have to admit it is not my favourite part of the process of creating a book, but it is fun to share more details about the creation process with you!

Head over to my website for more details on the book!

New in Store

The shop is back to normal with both digital and physical products available!

Two new prints are available at the store. I have to say I really like them, and I’m really happy to share them with you!

Click on the picture for more details!

I’m re-re-re-reading,

I don’t know what it is about this book, but since I read, or rather listened, to it last year, I keep coming back to it. I am now reading Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine, by Gail Honeyman,for the fourth time in a year, and I still love it!

Eleanor is such a lovable character. She is incredibly funny and so vulnerable, and I wish she was my friend. All the characters in the book are written with sensibility and are realistic in the most positive way possible. The story is mysterious and intriguing. My only complaint is that this book is such a fast read. Maybe that’s why I’m reading it over and over again!

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Book review: The Art of Beatrix Potter, by Emily Zach

Book Reviews

(En Français ici)

Ah Beatrix Potter! I’ve always loved her cute watercolour illustrations and still have a painted plate that I used throughout my childhood adorned with Peter Rabbit. She is such a staple in children’s book illustration, it was only a matter of time until I shared this book with you: The Art of Beatrix Potter, by Emily Zach.

What I love most about this book is that it doesn’t only include work from Batrix Potter’s famous children’s books but sketches and paintings she did throughout her life. It’s so intereting to see how her style evolved and how varied her work actually is: from fairy tale illustrations to botanical illustrations and landcapes paintings, Beatrix Potter seems to have done it all.

I was particularly impressed by her childhood sketches that already show all the potential of a great artist. Her attention to details and power of observation even then were incredible. There is something very touching in seeing childhood pieces from one of your favourite illustrators.

The book also presents many illustrations Potter created as a botanical illustrator. For example, she illustrated different mushroom guides. Of course, as I’m working on my own mushroom illustrations these days, those images are very inspiring and motivating.

Finally, the text is also very interesting and provides valuable insights into the artist’s life and struggles. It’s fascinating to learn about her being one of the first authors to actually think about the design of the book itself, not only its content. Once again, her attention to detail combined with a good amount of common sense is noteworthy.

Overall, I think that if you enjoyed Beatrix Potter’s books as a child, you’ll enjoy this book immensely because it provides a large context and overview of the artist’s work and life. It is a great reference book for anyone interested in this illustrator and makes for a quiet yet fascinating read.

The Art of Beatrix Potter, by Emily Zach, Chronicle Books


Book review: The Art of Beatrix Potter, par Emily Zach

Ah Beatrix Potter ! J’ai toujours aimé ses jolies illustrations à l’aquarelle et j’ai encore une assiette peinte que j’ai utilisée tout au long de mon enfance, ornée de Peter Rabbit. Elle est tellement incontournable dans l’illustration de livres pour enfants, ce n’était qu’une question de temps avant que je ne partage ce livre avec vous : L’art de Beatrix Potter, par Emily Zach.

Ce que j’aime le plus dans ce livre, c’est qu’il ne contient pas seulement des dessins tirés des célèbres livres pour enfants de Batrix Potter, mais aussi des croquis et des peintures qu’elle a faits tout au long de sa vie. C’est tellement intéressant de voir comment son style a évolué et à quel point son travail est réellement varié : des illustrations de contes de fées aux illustrations botaniques et aux peintures de paysages, Beatrix Potter semble avoir tout fait.

J’ai été particulièrement impressionnée par ses croquis d’enfance qui montrent déjà tout le potentiel d’une grande artiste. Son attention aux détails et son sens de l’observation étaient déjà incroyables à l’époque. Il y a quelque chose de très touchant à voir les œuvres d’enfance de l’une de vos illustratrices préférées.

Le livre présente également de nombreuses illustrations que Potter a réalisées en tant que dessinatrice botanique. Par exemple, elle a illustré différents guides sur les champignons. Bien sûr, comme je travaille actuellement sur mes propres illustrations de champignons, ces images sont très inspirantes et motivantes.

Enfin, le texte est également très intéressant et donne un aperçu précis de la vie et des préoccupations de l’artiste. Il est fascinant d’apprendre qu’elle est l’un des premiers auteurs à avoir réellement réfléchi à la conception du livre lui-même, et pas seulement à son contenu. Une fois de plus, son attention aux détails, combinée à une bonne dose de bon sens, est remarquable.

Dans l’ensemble, je pense que si vous avez apprécié les livres de Beatrix Potter lorsque vous étiez enfant, vous apprécierez énormément ce livre car il fournit un large contexte et un aperçu de l’œuvre et de la vie de l’artiste. C’est un excellent livre de référence pour tous ceux qui s’intéressent à cette illustratrice et ce livre constitue une lecture à la fois paisible et fascinante.

The Art of Beatrix Potter, par Emily Zach, Chronicle Books