I found a book one day at my local thrift store on Robert-Émile Fortin We was an artist from Hull, Quebec with a penchant for wood stoves, cats and dogs, and rocking chairs.
This painting reminds me of a needlework picture I once saw at a Village des Valeurs in Montreal. It was in a huge wooden frame, and was of an empty room in a cabin. The scale was so big and the stitches so small, it stopped me in my tracks. I regret not spending the $30 on it to this day. The above images are examples of Fortin's earlier work. He worked for a time for the topographic mapping service of the Department of Energy, Mines and Resources in Ottawa. I feel that the last image especially shows off the precision he would have used for topography work.
His paintings of kitchen interiors and all the tiny details are my true favorites though. It was said that everything in the picture had a symbol behind it, evoking his childhood and thoughts and feelings of the world around him.
"They are the playmates of his childhood and the truest representatives of friendship. The cat has virtually become Fortin's trademark.
The great part about finding this book second hand, besides being introduced to an amazing Quebec folk artist, is that the former owner of the book met Robert-Émile Fortin, and had a personalized signature! Complete with hand-drawn cat.
I admit to things being a little Cross-Stitch centric the last couple of posts, but that is only because my partner-in-crime is scheming up a series of illustrations which, when combined in rapid succession, will form a delightful little animation.
That being said, I will not hesitate to re-cap what I have been stitching away in my corner of the studio with the radio on and the sun beaming in. A new Bow Heart necklace with adorable beads from Beads Planète Bouquet Cross Stitch Earrings in black and a sneak peak at a "Happy New Home" sampler.
I heard an interview on the radio with someone called an Efficiency Expert, and while I wouldn't compare my small computer set-up at home to a large corporate environment, I realized that my scanner placement was at a disadvantage where it was sitting. So, I re-configured my space more efficiently, and proceeded to scan pictures with ease.
These illustrations are from a very charming french book called, Pere Nuage, by Laurence Delaby with illustrations by Annette Buclet. It is my mission to read this book word for word and figure out what is going on. It looks like a fairly incredible story based on the pictures. Anxious cats! Smoke rings! People doing some sort of shuffle!
Be advised that I will be scanning pictures on a regular basis now that my scanning system is at peak efficiency. Sometimes a little re-arranging is all it takes!
I (Sam) recently opened a second Etsy shop! It's called maudstitch and features vintage clothing and collectibles I've found in my travels. Everything listed is something I love and I'm so excited to finally share my enthusiasm and treasures with others.
One of my favorite things in the world is thrifting, and I'm over the moon to be able to do it now knowing I don't have to leave anything behind! Please check it out, I've taken lots of photos of my fully decked out dressform, Edith in the sunny corner of our studio!
Considering the growing collection of vintage children's books taking over my apartment, I feel it is only right to start scanning some of the amazing illustrations. The colour, artistry, imagination and design is a source of major inspiration for our work, so check back for more delightful pictures soon!
From the book: "The Mountain Goats of Temlaham" Pictures by Elizabeth Cleaver