Category Archives: deep

With Child featured on Fahrenheit Twins new single

sander-blom

About a month ago Sander Blom (pictured above) of Fahrenheit Twins contacted me asking if I’d be interested in letting them use With Child on their new track, Mother’s Day. We traded.

It’s quite a lovely track if you ask me!

You can download the track for free from here.

Fahrenheit Twins are from the Netherlands.

You don’t know where you are until it passes you by

tree of life, sketch, drawing, ink drawing, sketchbook, journal, art by jessica doyle

And you don’t know where you’ll end up until you take that leap of faith.

Last July life got a whole lot busier for me. I began working more at the City Market producing and selling art at the stall and Chris became a full-time parent overnight. Our lives changed instantly as Chris scrambled to find a way to look after his son while he was at work full-time. His son turned 12 shortly after and was then able to spend a few hours alone here and there so that helped.

It hit me hard. Chris went from sharing custody 50/50 with his ex to having his son full-time with no extra money, support or anything. It took a toll on our five month old relationship but it also opened it in another way and I got to see how wonderful this man really was. I also got to know his son better and saw how great of a kid he was.

While dating and single from 2007 to 2012, before Chris and I got together, I swore up and down not to date a man with children because of the experiences I had with them. These men were completely absent in their children’s lives or kept me a secret from their kids and/or their ex or were dating multiple women and lying about it. These things didn’t bode well for me as I wanted to someday have a child of my own and very much wanted an involved father in that child’s life.

So I began dating men without kids and usually these men were kids themselves who were more interested in their boats, bikes and pensions than in finding common ground to walk on together. I managed quite well to attract men who wanted no commitment.

I then quit smoking and quit drinking shortly after and began to see “I” was the reason for not attracting a quality man into my life. Well… half the reason… at least.

I’ve known Chris a long time… since I was 19… so 20 years… long… time. We grew up in the same neighborhood. He went out with a good friend of mine as a teenager. He was also a mutual friend of my ex-husband and I. I can remember sitting on the couch talking with Chris while my ex was engrossed in video games. I was never just Jessica. I was Andy’s girlfriend then wife… then ex. This all seems so long ago. A lifetime ago.

We all attended college together and Chris hung out with my ex at our apartment. We partied together but mostly I stayed home as I was sick a lot during college with Chron’s disease and physically could not handle the late nights and party’s. We all studied Graphic Design, surface design and illustration.

After Fredericton we both went our separate ways. Chris spent some time in Toronto and then had his son here in Saint John. He married and raised his two step-children and his own child. All the while I divorced and partied my ass off for five years in Saint John, Fredericton and Vancouver, perhaps making up for losing most of my twenties to severe illness and for marrying a man who didn’t share the same values and morals as I did. And there is no fault in that, it’s just the way the cards played out.

And now, 20 years later Chris and I find ourselves expecting a baby, dealing with extensive child custody and divorce issues, managing two homes, three cats and simply doing our best to keep healthy organic food on the table, the bills paid up-to-date and all the while we both are doing it sober.

Our life may seem mundane to some but it’s our life and the one we are choosing to live. Chris partied lots during his teens and early twenties while I got the partying out of my system in my late twenties and early thirties. And while I miss the parties on occasion, it’s a rather nostalgic feeling of been there done that, had fun and moving on now to the next stage of my life kind of feeling.

And I’m so grateful and lucky to have this man to share this stage of life with.

I love you Chris.

Metamorphosis – anemone drawing

Anemone drawing by artist Jessica Doyle

When you have felt bad for so long you don’t realize how bad you actually were feeling until you feel a bit better. And when you really begin to believe that when you let go of all that bad, your heart will automatically open and be receptive to all the good.

anemone detail

I drew this mystical marine anemone with ink and coloured pencil inside a 9×9 inch Fabriano Quadrato Artist Journal.

Gulp – simple fish sketch

simple fish drawing by artist jessica doyle

You gotta swallow hard when what’s around you is changing more rapidly than you are able to handle. This is the point when you realize you can not go back, but are terrified to more forward, and more than that, numb to the present. For me this point hit on Day 4 while detoxing in late January.

You can’t breath and you can’t exhale.

1. Sobriety and Addiction
2. Yin and Yang
3. Alpha and Omega

I forced myself to draw while in detox for fear that if I didn’t I would not know how to afterwards.

Taken by surprise or how it ended

something and nothing - relationship breakup- sadness - illustration by jessica doyle

When you make assumptions about something, especially someone, it can become hyperbolic to an enth degree that perhaps you don’t realize until well after the climax. It’s so easy to generalize and compartmentalize people’s actions and words into man-made stereotypes that we forget that none of us fit into them, nor should we fit into them. We may carry or display a few of the stereotypical characteristics but ultimately we are all at least a little bit unique in how we adapt to situations that arise that took us by surprise.

You kind of get to a point where you know you have to snap out of it and move forward and stop sobbing, pacing and begin eating properly again and get back into the game even with the broken heart. I didn’t realize it was a broken heart until this morning when I woke again with that familiar pang in my central chest that I haven’t felt in a very long time… years maybe?

And I feel so foolish and just don’t understand even what happened over the last few weeks… a complete 360º spun wildly for sure.

I’m well aware that some of you who are reading this know both myself and the man involved but here’s the thing I don’t have anything bad to say and that is why this hurts so much. It really shouldn’t hurt this much right? It’s just the timing is off right? We were not meant for each other right? The stars were not aligned right, right? The age gap was too big? He’s just not that into me right?

And here I’m thinking and asking myself why I keep attracting the same man over and over again and expecting a different result when in actual fact this person is not the same as my two long-term ex’s at all. While there are similarities it was the emotions I was experiencing while spending time with him that made me think he was similar to my ex’s when in actual fact this man was quite different.

It was exhilarating to spend the holidays with him at each of our respective households. We both were not working (on holiday) and kind of jumped head long into a whirlwind romance. Maybe it was just what we both needed? We could talk about anything, cook and eat food together and both enjoyed walking immensely. We had things in common but really we had much that wasn’t in common and that is what I enjoyed so much. He told me stories and sang to me while playing guitar while I drew in my sketchbook. He introduced me to his family and friends and he likewise met some of my people too.

And while I can pin point a few things that made our relationship end I really don’t understand why it ended but have resolved that it has indeed ended.

I’ve dated some men over the last few years in search of a long-term relationship and have experienced break-ups either of my own doing or of the man’s doing and I was always able to pick myself right back up and move on with no regrets. For God sakes… I’ve been eating chocolate for the last three days. I DO NOT eat chocolate ever. Chocolate bars have been known to go stale in my fridge.

This time… it’s not so easy to go back to online dating.

So how can one learn from this experience?

Throw everything you know out the window and just let yourself feel and be vulnerable to whatever is happening.

When we base attraction only on physical it can lead to being attracted to the same people over and over again and expecting different results. I think this is where people’s “types” come into play. Like always buying apples and hoping one apple will become an orange. Well, I met Mr. Clementine in mid-December and he was tasty. And then, my dating patterns and beliefs were smashed to smithereens which is a very good thing.

Yet, this whole experience is beyond bittersweet.

I miss him.

The illustration above is from the children’s book Every Someday that I illustrated a couple of years back. I have a few soft cover copies here in the studio. If you are interested in purchasing a signed edition get in touch and let me know.

The timing is off and someday soon it will turn on

handpainted wooden beads by artist jessica doyle

In life we either get it right or we don’t as there really isn’t an in between nether world that we can climb into when things aren’t going the way we want them to. However, I tend to crawl into that purgatorial space when the creative bug hits and begin drawing the creatures that float around in it, in an attempt to make sense of what was, what is and what could be or write, right here, on the blog.

And it isn’t that things are going bad right now, they are however at a stand still of sorts and testing the limits with the timing being off and locating the on switch seems to be out of reach and dangling in front of my fingertips. I have to laugh at that because what else am I to do when it comes to men?

I decided to put my online dating profile to rest a couple of weeks ago and haven’t logged in since. I’d much rather meet a man in real life and talk with them face to face as between both Facebook and Plenty of Fish the men I’ve met through those sites are not what they make themselves out to be.

There was the man who after five or six painful dates simply couldn’t say more than “Well, uh”, “What do you want to do?”, “I’ll have whatever you are having” or “Whatever you want to watch is good with me”. Conversation was extremely painful and the thumb rubbing and clenched jaw and darting eyes and feel sorry for me look on his face at all times made me want to silently scream. I’m sorry, but always agreeing with me on everything is a complete turn-off. He was not man enough for me. But this next guy was too much man… Continue reading

Well, that didn’t work

Today, would have been the day that I announce the winners of the donation drive but not enough donations came in to make the draw worthwhile. I’ll be refunding all donations later today (even though I said I wouldn’t within the post) that came in over the last couple of weeks. I couldn’t on good conscience keep them when not enough came in to even draw for the smallest prize.

It’s always a good thing to try something once and even twice at times when it comes to life, relationships or work related stuff. So, I tried it and it didn’t work.

What I learned over the last few months:

  • What people say isn’t what they actually do
  • What people like isn’t actually what they buy
  • Take certain personalities with a grain of salt while trusting others with your deepest secrets
  • There are some who taunt and some who encourage
  • And some who desperately want to see you fail because of their own shortcomings
  • And others whom will cheer you on and strive for your success as they work diligently towards their own too

All in all everyone brings value to the table and that is, in itself, inspiration enough!

The world would be a dull and bland place if everyone looked, acted and dressed the same. Sadly, the mainstream media would have you beleive that that is the way you should be.

I grew much skin over the last few months. And I’m glad you are all here.

With all that said, I’ll be placing a permanent donation button in the sidebar and on my about page later today for anyone who happens upon the site and feels it’s helped them in some way.

Culmination – new illustration

Mushroom art entitled Culmination by Artist Jesisca Doyle

Peeled the tape off of this piece last night, let it sit and air out. Not that an illustration created with ink, watercolour and coloured pencil needs to air out and dry but it is a nice way to welcome it into the world. Or perhaps, I’ve lost it. Continue reading