Category Archives: thank you

Customer Appreciation Photo – George – yes, he’s a pretty fish

George the fish - drawing by artist jessica doyle - bathroom decor, wall decor

A few days ago Sue from Michigan emailed this lovely photo of George matted, framed and hanging on this bathroom wall.

Initially Sue emailed asking if I could print George at a larger than 8.5 x 11 inch size so that it would cover 12 x 16 inch wall area. I wrote back saying, that while yes, I can print it out at that size, just to keep in mind that once matted and framed a letter sized print would be around the size she had wanted.

She went ahead purchased the letter sized George about a month ago.

Sue emails…

Jessica – I have attached my framed print of “George” and he looks wonderful in my remodeled bathroom… Thank you so much for brightening my day – every day – when I look at him. I have received so many compliments on the picture. They all love it.

And continues on after I wrote asking for permission to share the photo with you all here on the blog,

You sure can share it with everyone. You should be so proud of him because every time I look at him, I smile, and that’s so important these days. Being in my bathroom he gets frequented often and it’s so much fun to just look at him and smile.

Have a great weekend and thanks again for your wonderful talent!

Sue

Thank you Sue!

George, the pretty fish is available in three sizes…

  1. Limited Edition ACEO Sized George
  2. 5×7 Inch George
  3. Letter Sized George

The Original illustration of George was purchased by a local Canadian Art Collector 18 months ago.

At this time of year anything is possible

Three Wise Men, Christmas Owls, Hoot Hoot, turquoise, red, cute art, wall decor, jessicadoyle

And at this time of year anything can happen.

Over the last month or so I haven’t wanted to talk about me or what is going on in my life online save for the occasional tweet or Facebook update. I’ve been doing my best to pay attention and more than that just to be present with what is happening around me and within the circles of people that I spend time with in real life.

It was a needed break from online activity and this change of pace gave me a chance to attend and sell my art at five live art shows and sales during the months of November and December. These shows were amazing and I got to speak to many people and fans and it made me feel very humbled to be able to create for a living but more than that break out of a stagnant routine that was ultimately killing me.

I quit smoking five weeks ago. Passing that one month mark last weekend was almost more than I could stand. The moment was surreal as I was prepping for my fifth and final art show of 2011 in a neighboring city, planning a first date with a man (whom I’ve since been on two more dates with BTW) and fighting mental exhaustion from producing enough stock to bring to the shows to sell.

And shit has happened over the last five weeks and people have been mean and things have occurred that would have easily made me smoke in the past but for some damn reason I don’t care about any of you who want to see me fail or anything that wants to undermine my health or safety. I don’t wish any of you ill or harm or anything bad I just need the space from the negativity and harsh judgements that you seem to have.

I began the year 2011 talking about not being afraid and I must say this year caused me more angst and fear than any other in recent memory. But what a beautiful year it has been and what a wonderful time it is to be alive and to be not afraid.

I am fortunate to have not have lost my house this year.
I am fortunate to have regained my health.
I am fortunate to have conquered the last addiction that I had.
I am smart enough to know the difference between a good a guy and a bad guy.
And I am so lucky to have family and friends who love me.

I wish you all a safe and happy holiday season. I’ll be transitioning into blogging and working online more over the coming weeks. I miss talking with you all.

Merry Christmas from Missy two the cat, Little Orange the cat and myself!

xo

The Three Wise Men are available matted in the shop!

The DIY Deck in Pictures

My feet on the new deck!

When I purchased this home a couple of years ago the side stairs and small 3 by 3 foot landing were in pretty rough shape, but still usable. By the beginning of this Summer they were detaching from the house and were unsafe to continue using. My Dad and brother dropped by about a week ago and built this new 6 by 8 foot deck and staircase for me in one day.

This is the story in pictures… (click them for a larger image)

My Dad (John) the mason and younger brother (Stephen) the journeyman carpenter are awesome! I love you both and the new side deck rocks!

The good in becoming vulnerable

How do you deal with unwanted attention or attention that perhaps you didn’t expect to get from something you wrote, said, posted, tweeted, shared or facebooked for the sheer fun of it; basically because you could, because it’s your personal space to share and create on.

Getting sick and feeling awful certainly puts one’s life into perspective. It has a way of making you take stock of where you are, where you were and most importantly where you want to be once you do begin to feel better.

Do you count your blessings? Do you make yourself vulnerable to new friendships, new business initiatives or even romantic relationships or do you avoid them out of fear? Do you take risks or do you always walk on the damn line like everyone else and fit into the mold that society markets to you?

Something snapped inside in March after travelling to Fredericton. I haven’t been quite the same since. And that could be due to the Synthroid beginning to work and stabilize the hypothyroidism. Or, it could be that in being honest with and surrounding myself with people who inspire, share, challenge and grow with me rather than work against or hold me back, I’m growing as a person again. And this doesn’t mean that we agree all of the time… in fact it’s quite the opposite… it just means that we like each other and like the dreams we talk of. That Waitress Story is more important than ever.

I applied for a creation grant in early April. It was rejected three weeks ago.

I signed with an artist representative a few months back. I ended that relationship quite abruptly a few weeks ago after learning that all was not what it seemed to be.

I also turned down a part-time College level teaching job earlier this year after realizing during the uber-complicated negotiation process that we were not a good fit after all.

I am dating and realizing more and more what it is that I’m looking for and it’s not so simple or black and white as what is written on this list as many men seem to think from the sheer amount of emails I’ve received from them about it. Look, I don’t date men that I meet online anymore, well maybe…

All it really takes in life is a genuine smile and an outreached arm to dance. Actions speak much louder than words and it’s those actions that make a person back away or grab on and enjoy the ride.

Really, life is that simple and if you are not experiencing that then you must do everything you can and get off of that straight line and enjoy the bumps along the way.

Today I’m grateful for family and friends who while being kind and gentle are challenging me to break out of the shell that I slid into sometime last year.

Photo Credits: Andrew of Park Imagery

  1. Me and my beautiful friend of 20 years, Vikki (Fredericton, NB, Canada)
  2. Me and Vikki again (Fredericton, NB, Canada)
  3. Me hoola hopping with 50lbs of homemade hoops (Quispamsis, NB, Canada)
  4. Doing my best to keep those hoops spinning (Quispamsis, NB, Canada)
  5. My good friend Anne hooping (Quispamsis, NB, Canada)
  6. My good friend and roommate Andrew, hooping! (Quispamsis, NB, Canada)
  7. Harrison’s Dad, me and Harrison (Cambridge Narrows, NB, Canada)

Macbeth – The Witches Chant – illuminated manuscript page and the gruesome story behind the creation of this

Macbeth - the witches chant - william shakespeare - illuminated manuscript - fine art glicee print

During the mid-nineties I was an avid calligrapher. I created this piece at the age of 21 in late 1994. I had become fascinated with illuminated manuscripts such as the Book of Kells which is likely the most famous example of illumination. The Book of Kells is four gospels from the New Testament.

This page began as a class assignment. I remember being utterly amazed when we as a class at the New Brunswick College of Craft and Design travelled to the Harriett Irving Library at the University of New Brunswick in Fredericton to see first hand a fine reproduction of the Book of Kells. There were only 1,480 created from the original manuscript in the whole world. We had to wear white gloves while handling the book.

I also enjoyed reading stories by William Shakespeare and in particular, The Withes Chant from Macbeth. Continue reading

Saying thank you to my internet art supply and book angels

pencil crayons, coloured pencils

Today, to my surprise I received a delightful box from Charles Smith in the mail. A few months ago he had written to ask if there were any art supplies that I needed as he was traveling to Japan where art supplies are cheap and plentiful as opposed to here in Eastern Canada.

After numerous emails from Charles I finally conceded and I wrote back and asked if he’d pick me up a few Pilot Choose Pens in white as my one lone one had all but run out. Well, I opened the box and there were five pens, two boxes of Prismacolor 36 pack Verithin coloured pencils and one box of Prismacolor 12 pack Watercolor pencil crayons. OMG. I was in tears. My pencil crayons were running out fast so this colourful box of goodies has really brightened my day. Continue reading

Remember Evolution? Customer Appreciation Photo

Customer appreication photo - Emily holding original illustration by artist Jessica Doyle

A few weeks ago I was contacted by Alex who lives in the United Kingdom. He was asking if I could ship my artwork Priority Post to the UK so that it would arrive in time for his niece’s 16th Birthday. I wrote back saying yes and with an estimate on the shipping and handling charges and asked which piece he would like the additional shipping charge added to in the shop.

mandala illustration - fruit slice art by artist jessica doyle

I was delighted when he wrote back saying Evolution. What is nice about this particular illustration is that it is one of the few pieces that I documented during the process of creating it. I sent along the link to the step by step guide blog post so that his niece could learn how to create Evolution as an assignment in school.

step by step illustration - how to draw a mandala

This was a great surprise to me. Thank you Alex and Emily for permission to use your photograph and to share your story here on the blog. I’m still smiling. Hope you are both well. And Emily, good luck with your art studies! :)

On taking responsibility as a customer

Very recently, I began experiencing very slow load times, latency and hundreds of downtimes and on this blog and on HandmadeCloud both of which run on WordPress and are hosted with MediaTemple. The problems reached critical mass when I received an email from MediaTemple stating that:

Subject – Your Databases Have Been Auto-Scaled

Dear Jessica,
(mt) Media Temple’s automated MySQL monitoring systems have detected an increase in database activity for your Grid-Service (jessicadoyle.com). Your databases are now being served from a MySQL Burst Container to help your web applications scale during this surge in activity. These containers are a component of our MySQL SmartPool v.2 that allows your websites to instantly handle intense, temporary bursts of database activity.

And the email goes on to explain in further detail and ends with a short Q&A.

About an hour before receiving this email I noticed my uptime on Pingdom was awful for HandmadeCloud and then the site wasn’t loading at all. Then the auto-scale email came. I panicked and began frantically watching a customary search that I perform on Twitter to see if other MT customers were being effected with this, began contacting alternative hosts, posted in the MT support forums and opened a support request.

Things hit critical mass when MT suspended my account moments after giving my sites the extra juice they needed to keep going. I was dumbfounded and couldn’t understand how my sites were using so much *GPU when I was only receiving an average 500 to 900 visitors per day to both sites combined and was not bursted back in April 2010 when this blog was featured in an Etsy Finds email on the Etsy blog. During that six day period this blog received a whopping 20,000 visitors and it was not bursted into a container. Continue reading