Love is in the air, and my Nova Scotia-themed cards for Valentine’s Day are back! I’ve also made some new cards for the new year. 💌
To save these to your computer for writing on and sharing, simply click on a card, right-click and select “Save image as…” Then you can either print them out or post them on social media, and send them to your Valentine! 💝💘💕
Bring out the fireworks and sparklers – it’s Bonfire Night again! 🎆🎇
In case you didn’t know, Bonfire Night – AKA Guy Fawkes Night – is an annual celebration held every 5th of November in the United Kingdom and some other Commonwealth territories. It commemorates the day Guy Fawkes and his gang of conspirators failed to bomb the Houses of Parliament in London in 1605, in an attempt to assassinate King James I of England. (I go into more detail on the origins of Bonfire Night in this post.)
With Canada being part of the Commonwealth, a leftover from the days of the British Empire, I was surprised to see that – with the exception of Newfoundland – Bonfire Night is almost relatively unknown across the Atlantic. While it’s not really about them or their parliament, I had wrongly assumed that it was a shared celebration across the Commonwealth, as they are all tied to Britain.
But geography doesn’t really matter, as some of the cast of A Nova Scotian Way of Life (ANSWOL) have come together for a fireworks show of their own. The fireworks were drawn with glitter pens, giving the impression that they’re “popping” out of the night sky. Westville and Parrsboro even have sparklers sizzling away while the bonfire burns bright. This is also Truro and Yarmouth’s first Bonfire Night as a married couple (it feels like it was their wedding just yesterday!)
If you’re having a bonfire or a fireworks display of your own, or are going to a public one, safety is always important. Why not see these safety tips?
It’s that time of the year again! The whole cast of A Nova Scotian Way of Life (ANSWOL) is getting into the spooky mood with their Halloween costumes.
Everyone wears a costume that has something to do with their hometown, with the exception of a few who are just wearing ordinary clothes because I either couldn’t think up a costume for them, or they don’t celebrate Halloween for whatever reason. (Maybe it’s too scary for them?)
If you’re familiar with Nova Scotia, or live there, some of the costumes will be pretty obvious to you. For example, Lunenburg is the Bluenose II, a famous sailing boat built as a replica of the original Bluenose, which was a several-time winner of the America’s Cup in the 1920s and 30s. Oak Island is a pirate, owing to an everlasting legend that a secret stash of pirate treasure has been buried there, on which a popular reality TV series is now based. Berwick and Oxford are an apple and a blueberry respectively, owing to their hometowns’ natural abundance of these fruits. (Berwick’s apple costume even has some worms wriggling through it for extra spookiness!) Others are just for fun, like Hantsport and Stewiacke’s wizard and devil costumes, James River’s beaver costume (because his last name is Beaverton), and Pugwash as Captain Pugwash (get it?) 🤣
If you don’t celebrate Halloween, just have a great day. If you do, though, have a Happy Halloween, and may it be filled with lots of treats, not tricks!
The temperatures are coming down, and so are the leaves on the trees. Autumn has arrived! 🍂🍁
After the heat of the summer, cooler days are back again. But the cold of winter hasn’t set in yet, so it’s the perfect time to have some autumnal fun in the forest!
The Big Canadian Three’s Autumn Adventure
The Denoons’ Autumn Adventure
To celebrate the new season, I’ve drawn not one, but two artworks. While the characters differ between each one, they are basically the same, both being in the same forest. These are a sort of follow-up to the artwork I drew for autumn last year, but with more focus on the natural environment.
The first picture stars the big Canadian three – Toronto, Montreal and Vancouver. I’ve tended to be drawing them more in recent months, in an attempt to go beyond Nova Scotia and the Atlantic provinces. They’ve also received a major re-design – Toronto is now of South Asian descent, and Vancouver is of English and Chinese/Korean descent, which more closely matches their real-life demographics. Montreal, while still staying white, now has some Irish and Scottish in him in addition to French Canadian, and he now wears Montreal Canadiens hockey wear. They all have suitably warm yet breathy clothes for the cool autumn breezes. In his hand, Montreal holds a red maple leaf – the everlasting emblem of Canada everywhere. 🍁🇨🇦
The second picture stars the Denoon family – Pictou, Port Hawkesbury and Stellarton, Like Montreal, Pictou also holds a leaf in his hands, but it’s three leaves rather than just one. I like to think that there’s one leaf for each member of the family. 😁
All the leaves were drawn by hand, so no two are the same, giving each one a unique shape. They were also each coloured individually, vividly creating the fiery reds, oranges, yellows and earthy browns of autumn – the last burst of natural colour before the greys of winter.
I’m posting this on the first day of October, which means it’s also time to get spooky! 🎃👻
The ceremony’s been held. The rings and vows have been exchanged. The marriage’s been made official. Now for the fun part – party time! 🥳🎉🎊🍾
Taking place a few hours after the wedding itself, the guests and the happy couple have moved off the beach into a large private garden, filled with hydrangeas, wisteria and roses. Now they can really let themselves go with dancing, drinking, eating and more dancing. Providing the entertainment are the Cape Breton fiddling trio – Judique, Campbell and Lime Hill – and Mabou.
In keeping with Pride, there’s a distinctive rainbow theme to Truro and Yarmouth’s wedding. The banner decorating the arch is dyed in the myriad colours of the rainbow, as are the balloons which sway in the gentle midsummer breeze. The arch is again adorned with lilac cascades of wisteria, and the Nova Scotia and Pride flags, just as it was at the actual ceremony. The wedding cake has tiny wax figures of the happy couple on its crown, and was baked by Pictou (seen here carrying a tray of burgers) in rainbow shades. 🌈🍰
Some guests who didn’t appear in the previous drawing are here – Lunenburg, Halifax, Eskasoni and North Preston among them. (This was so I could sprinkle in a little more diversity.) Unfortunately for Pictou, some unwanted guests seem to have gatecrashed the party – and they seem to be enjoying the music. Kemptville, Kentville’s father, can’t seem to stop crying tears of joy either. (He’s been crying since that morning!)
When I had sketched this in my sketchbook, I had originally planned for the party to be held inside, like in a community hall. But with the wonderfully warm summer weather, I changed it so it would be outside instead, so everyone won’t deprive themselves of some much-needed Vitamin D while they enjoy Truro and Yarmouth’s happy day. ☀️
A new chapter has begun in Truro and Yarmouth’s lives, and they’re sure to remember it for many years to come. May their marriage be a long and joyful one. 👬❤️️🧡💛💚💙💜