Category Archives: emotions

Happy Kitty

Missy Two Shoes Died Today or why the decision to euthanize a pet is agonizing

I feel a little stunned and the back of my eyes and head hurt while my heart aches. Missy would have turned 17 years old this Summer which is 84 years old in human years.

She was a happy cat, a trooper, and travelled and lived from one coast of Canada to the other with me. She saw me through two major surgeries, marriage, divorce, addiction, and too many parties and both good and bad times to count. She always purred when you patted her and rolled onto her back for you to rub her belly. Missy loved when I whistled The Andy Grifith tune to her. She used to spend hours outside on decks and rooftops, catching moths at dusk or licking dew off of leaves in the garden. She was a great furry companion.

She is survived by Little Orange, her adoptive son, and Skulley, her stepsister and predeceased by Cat McGandy.

I miss her so much right now. It was agonizing taking her to the veterinary clinic this afternoon to euthanize. She lost the ability to walk this morning and would not eat or drink anymore. Her heart was failing and I couldn’t bear to watch her suffer any longer.

I love you Missy. You are truly missed and will never far from my thoughts.

Spring Cleaning Original Art Sale

Please note that this sale has ended.

It’s a lonely road we all must walk after coming clean with ourselves then our family and friends. And truly no one else really understands because they are each walking their own paths too.

And the plan is to ignore the banter and move forwards and not be so hard on myself. I can’t count how many people have said that to me lately… people who know me well and people who know me not so well. I must be wearing my emotions on my sleeve.

Where exactly is one to put their emotions? And yes, the sleeve is a metaphor. I always try to use a kleenex when necessary but will resort to using my sleeve when I’m running away from the zombies! Haha!

Look, I started a sale in the shop. All originals are 50% off. I really need to clear these wonderful original artworks out of the studio and make room for new creations both physically and emotionally. The prices are already marked down.

Happy Springtime Everyone!

Coming out to play or how an introvert fails to thrive

jessica doyle self portrait

If you are a creative person you likely have many drafts or unfinished pieces of work in various stages of completion laying around your studio or stored on the computer.

In early November, 2011 I began entering a burnout from working online and from life in general. And by mid-January 2012 my health had completely failed and I was hospitalized for seven days. It’s only now that I’m coming out of it (publicly) so to speak.

What’s sad, is that I knew it was happening all of last year but didn’t know how to stop it or where to go for help or how to financially afford treatment by taking time off of working as I have no health insurance or employment insurance. I wrote the following on November 7th, 2011, the night before my 38th birthday, and never published it here on the blog.

What exactly does it mean when you hit burnout or rather when you succumb to not be able to creatively think or do anything else other than change who you are.

And when you are introverted, adjusting to extroversion is almost painful at a cellular level. To an introvert, extroversion feels like being tickled everywhere for an extended period of time and forced to exert and use one’s senses in life in an outward fashion that others can see, taste, smell, watch or feel immediately.

An introvert on the other hand basically sponges all that external sensory stimuli, balls it up, swallows it, mentally digests it and assimilates it all into the brain for use in original and unique regurgitation onto paper, instrument or dialogue that extroverts absorb in the form of entertainment.

The above few paragraphs are by no means a finished thought but they do summarize how fast my fragile boundaries were eroding. I was utterly overwhelmed most, if not, all of last year. Only those people closest to me knew the extent of what I was trying to deal with if they even knew at all. I didn’t share too much here on the blog… I don’t think I knew how to. Yes, my failing thyroid is playing a part in all of this and yes I’m keeping up with the blood tests and adjustments in medication again.

And what finally prompted me to sign into this blog and break the silence and actually write today was perhaps the most awful therapy appointment I’ve ever had the pleasure of sitting through yesterday. And it wasn’t that it was awful per-say, it was just unlike anything I’ve ever experienced before… and I’m going to submit myself to it all over again next week. Haha.

A few weeks ago my Mom gave me a camera to use, that she had won at work, as she already had a camera of her own. It’s a Canon Powershot SD 3500 IS, 14.1MP. I’ve begun playing with it. I snapped the pic above in the upstairs bathroom.

In Between the Art

L

ast weekend I went to a concert of someone I’ve technically known since I was five, and despite the fact that she’s fairly popular, I was woefully unfamiliar with her music and had never seen her perform (unless you count living room karaoke.) It ended up being pretty incredible to watch, not just because the music was awesome (which it was) but because I was witnessing this person that I’d interacted with in a casual way perform as she does best, in her element, in front of her fans, in the spotlight. She displayed a great command of experience and talent in exactly the moment she needed to.

As artists, we’re familiar with this situation to varying degrees. Any time we’re at our own shows, or even doing something as simple as releasing a painting for public view, we summon all necessary skill and confidence into a fixed period of time in which we allow ourselves to be stars, to lead the room in a chorus of our own making. We understand the necessity of doing so, at least in short bursts, especially when we’re promoting something specific.

But what happens the rest of the time? Why do we tend to put our public selves into stasis when we’re not attached to the art? We still have a duty to be artists, which is doing more than making art. We have a purpose to live artistic lives, with intention and passion. Our lives should be as interesting and inspiring as our art. Being an artist is an action, not a title.
Continue reading

The Artist’s Drug of Choice

What’s your poison? Chocolate? Video-games? LSD?

Self-consciousness?

Artists have become notorious for substance use, addiction, and a good measure of crazy, which is probably intertwined with our ability and our need to make art. Not that all of us are crazy (yeah, right) and not that we’re all addicted to chemical head changes.

Or… are we?

As artists, our way of processing things, everything, is a bit different than people who don’t have the inclination to make art. We feel everything strongly, we see color differently, we look past reality into a world that doesn’t exist without our imagination. That in itself is a bit trippy, and we wouldn’t have the wherewithal to make grand, fantastical statements out of paint, thread, or music without a tendency to latch onto the emotional vibration of life. It’s not that everyone doesn’t do this to a degree, but artists take emotion to a whole new level. We breathe emotion into life. Often in beautiful, awe-inspiring ways. There’s an ebb and flow to be sure, with much of our time spent in frenzied creativity, overflowing with inspiration and ideas, high on nothing more than our need to create.

But there’s a flip side. Sometimes, if not properly nurtured, our emotional processing skills get broken. Sometimes everything gets black and dull and scary. Continue reading

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 Highs and Lows (of making art)

Tree shadows on canvas

Sometimes I just want to slap myself.

I have terrible mood swings regarding my art. One minute I think my work looks great and my career is going to be swell and everything is awesome. The next, I downward spiral into despair that nothing looks good, nothing is working, I’m a hack, it’s going to fail, people will laugh and mock and cry.

It’s all part of my process.

Generally at some point during every single painting I’ve ever made, I love it; I think it’s the best work I’ve ever done. At another point, with every single painting I’ve ever made, I hate it. It’s trash. It’s not worthy of continuing. And I do this back and forth throughout the entirety of creating each piece until I’m finally happy and satisfied with it. Continue reading

Fish illustration and some thoughts in no particular order and why I give up…

chart, fish, drawing, illustration, jessica doyle, whismical, skatchebook, fabriano quadrato journal, pilot Gtec C4 pen, watercolour

Why is it that when you really like someone you get all crazy and can’t contain yourself and blurt out the wrong things and repeat yourself, asking the same questions over and over from sheer excitement because you do indeed like the man. These last few months have been nothing but extraordinary for me and I’m desperately trying to plant my feet on the ground again which over the last week has happened in a most intense and disastrous way.

I need downtime and traditionally January through to April have been the months when I steel the time to be alone or in one on one calm atmospheres to create, paint, write and choose to be home more often than not.

I’ve lost the ability to write openly and freely here on my blog because everyone knows about it now, especially here in my hometown, and I’m doing my best to come to terms with this and kicking myself for allowing said outside sources to dictate what I could and could not legitimately write about last year.

chart, fish, drawing, illustration, jessica doyle, whismical, skatchebook, fabriano quadrato journal, pilot Gtec C4 pen, watercolour

Have you ever found the honesty, respect, integrity and intimacy you’ve been searching for in a man only to have it hit you in the soul so blatantly hard that it makes you step back and go is this f#$%ing real? Then your wall falls down and you are so vulnerable and cold and shaking and needing warmth yet terrified to let someone else take control. And then they take control and you hurt and shake like nothing you have ever felt before because they choose to leave and do the opposite of what you hoped for?

I’m just over seven weeks smoke free #Quitsmoking um… yeah and ohhhhhhhhh so grateful that I stopped smoking for myself and for no one else or I’d likely be smoking again given the life circumstances that have arisen and that I seem to have found myself in and facing over the last seven weeks.

I haven’t been a man’s girlfriend in a very long time and I’d like to know what that feels like again for real. This isn’t really a finished blog post or even one that makes complete sense… but…

You should never trust so blindly or simply give up. Plain and simple… really?

Jessica Doyle sexy artist

I give up. And yes, giving up is a choice and this doesn’t mean that it’s a negative choice. It’s just a choice to change direction and reevaluate why doing the same things over and over again and expecting different results is an exercise in futility.