Studio Work

I’ve made some progress on this piece today, from my UNDERNEATH series of works. Another couple of afternoons and I think I’ll have it… Then I’ll have to wait for it to dry before hanging it at the café. It’ll look much better on the big white walls over there!

I like to photograph my paintings while I’m working on them. Somehow they look different through the lens of the camera, and I usually like the image better in the photograph!

While I’m painting, I’m listening to Mark Critch read his book, Son of a Critch. I was laughing out loud even in the 1st chapter, which is great considering the background information for my decision to create underwater images. Something that I have learned, is that listening to funny people like Mark Critch really does help with my mental health. The Reader’s Digest people were bang on with their “Laughter is the Best Medicine” pages!

A Day Makes All the Difference

There’s lots of sunshine in the forecast! Perfect for photographing products for my online shop.

I have two gesso covered canvases propped on top of my press where the sun comes into the room full on for a large portion of the day. That’s where I am laying cards, mini-prints, and bookmarks to be photographed. I’m using just the natural light, with the overhead lights turned off to avoid extra shadows.

This picture was taken yesterday afternoon. I love that the shadows enable us to see the texture of the paper, and the colour is fairly accurate (Canson’s Antique White). I have not used any filters nor adjusted the exposure on my camera (which is my Samsung Galaxy 9 smartphone).
Compare this second picture with the first. This picture was taken today, with the exact same lighting conditions and the same settings on the camera. The paper on the impression is exactly the same colour and texture as the card from yesterday’s picture, yet Antique White looks more Bright White today.

To add text, I use a Snapchat app- it’s really easy and quick to make the changes and save the altered photo. What do you think of my new images?

The Tickle Vacation Home

There is a new vacation home available year-round in Newtown, part of New-Wes-Valley. It’s called The Tickle Vacation Home, and I’d like to make sure you all know about it! Maybe you’re looking for somewhere to stay so that you can come visit Norton’s Cove Studio! The owners are Jason & Tammy Attwood, and can be reached directly at whittamm@outlook dot com.

You can find reservation information on Airbnb, and The Tickle Vacation Home has some pretty good reviews so far. The price is almost unbelievable, considering that there are three double beds in the house! Newtown is pretty spectacular, with beautiful photography opportunities around every corner.

Something this area needs much more of, is accommodations. We’re slowly but surely growing our tourism industry, which makes me sigh a breath of relief to see more and more listings on Airbnb for my region, as I very much depend on just that to make a living here at Norton’s Cove.

January Sale Table

It’s January! Happy new year everyone! I’ve been kept busy with some shop-keeping, repricing, putting away the Christmas decorations, making lots of plans for the brand new year ahead of us, and working through little stacks of receipts for my year-end paperwork. What are you doing, now that holiday festivities are drawing to a close?

Once again this winter, I am offering up some fab prices on some gift-ware in the studio- 50% off all items on the sale table! I will be adding new items as space is made with sales! If you can’t get here in person, but would like to take advantage of such good prices, just shoot me off an email or call me at the studio.

The table says it! 50% off gift-ware: books, onesies, pottery, mouse pads, a tote bag, and seal fur earrings, and berry vinegar to start things off! More items being added every day.

Classes & Workshops

I’m spending some time with my new 2020 calendar today, planning out the schedule of drawing classes, mat hooking workshops, and lino-cut printmaking workshops for the year.

Introduction to Drawing will run for eight weeks, starting in January, and will be offered at two different time-frames: 7-9 on Thursday nights, or 10am-noon on Friday mornings. This class will teach basic skills in drawing, including portraiture, using different drawing tools, and developing good practices.

Beginner Drawing Student from a previous class.

Advanced Drawing will also run for eight weeks, starting in January, and will take place at the studio on Mondays. Students can choose a morning or evening time slot with this class as well. This class is designed for students who have already learned the basic skills, and will spend each class working on still life arrangements or models, with guidance.

I am planning Mat Hooking Workshops to happen about once a month. These workshops are designed for beginners, and let you experiment with texture, design, and technique. Each student will create a unique tiny mat during the one day workshop.

A student work in progress…

And my favourite thing to teach, Lino-cut Printmaking Workshops, are being planned for about once every three weeks. I am always amazed at the quality of work my students create in a one day workshop!

Looking forward to welcoming back some previous students, and meeting new ones!

At the Café

Hello from gorgeous Norton’s Cove!

Norton’s Cove Café will be starting to celebrate the holidays this weekend!  Here’s what’s happening in the coming yuletide season:

Janet & Amanda welcome you back to the café for some treats and drinks on Friday nights for the season! We’ll be serving all our regular drinks, candy cane lattes, nachos, chippies, as well as cakes & cookies! Wear your dancing shoes! Bring a board game. But most importantly, bring your friends! If you’d like to reserve a table, please text me at 536-8166.
Still selling tickets to this event. Ian & Nancy have a special relationship with us here, as they were the first musical act to ever play at the café! And just to top that, they asked me to create a piece of artwork for their 2018 Christmas album, A Week in December! Doors at 7!

We’ll be serving supper to a private party on Saturday from 5-7 too, but ticket holders are welcome to show up any time after 7pm.
There are still a few tickets left for this event on December 23rd. Click the image to go straight to ticket info in the online shop!

Product Spotlight

With today’s product spotlight, I thought I’d let you know that the tickets for our popular Tibb’s Eve event are over half sold now, with three weeks left to purchase tickets! If you’re planning to attend, you may not want to wait for the last minute! Tickets cannot be reserved without payment.

Quickly becoming the most anticipated event of the season, Tibb’s Eve at Norton’s Cove Café will mark its third year this December 23rd!

Doors open at six o’clock to mingle and enjoy pre-dinner tasties: 

Coconut Shrimp (GF)
Cranberry Brie Bites (VEG)
Fried Potato Balls
Bacon & Caramelized Onion Crostini

The three-course festive meal starts at seven o’clock.  Choose from the following options: 


  1. Curried scallop and apple salad (GF)
  2. Pork and mushroom ragout on polenta wedge (GF)
  3. Roast tomato, goat cheese, and arugula tartlet (VEG)


  1. Braised lamb shank served with potato or rice and vegetable medley (GF)
  2. Pecan crusted stuffed chicken with potato or rice and vegetable medley (Can be GF / Nut Free if desired)
  3. Lentil veggie tartare with stewed vegetables and tofu lollipops (GF/ VEG)


  1. Guinness gingerbread cake nicely spiced with ginger, cinnamon, cloves, and nutmeg. Served with whiskey sauce, whipped cream, ginger cookie and sponge toffee crumbles.
  2. Rich, flourless chocolate cake (torte), chocolate ganache drip, salted caramel, fresh raspberries and candied walnuts. (GF)(can be nut free)
  3. Individual pavlova (crisp meringue with marshmallowy centre) filled with tangy lemon curd, fresh whipped cream, and berries. (GF)

Rockin’ starts at nine o’clock with live music from Mick Davis.  Wear your dancing shoes!

$100 ticket price includes all food, gratuity, and 2 beverages.  HST is extra. Get your tickets online here or at the studio!

Rockin’ Around the Christmas tree, let the Christmas spirit ring!  

*Please add your menu options to the notes part of your order, or email/text them to Janet.  Also, please make a note of any foods you need to avoid, as we can make adjustments where necessary.

If you’ve already purchased your tickets, thank you, and please send me your menu choices!