Don’t Pout

January 18, 2013

pouting child

Children seldom attempt to hide their displeasure when things don’t work out the way they want them to.   Some will resort to pouting, an expression that reveals itself in an upturned bottom lip as well as tension in the areas of the chin, nose and brow.   Children who find success at changing outcomes in their favor whenever they practice this expression will inevitably resort to using it more frequently.

But whether you’re a child or an adult, it’s best not to pout.  And if you must, do it quickly, then forgive, forget and move on.  Pouting may look cute on a child, but it’s never so on an adult.

~  Text and image copyright Amy-Lynn Bell 2013


Boundless Energy

March 10, 2012

frisbee dog

Some dogs have an energy that seems boundless.  Such a dog is Trey, a Staffordshire cross.  Although he lives to chase the ball, Trey also loves playing frisbee and exercising on an indoor treadmill when it’s too wet to go for walks outdoors.

This drawing of Trey was created with a combination of charcoal pencils (black, Venetian Red and Terracotta) and colored pencils on paper.

That Silent Place

June 13, 2009


… deep inside, in that silent place where a child’s fears crouch…

~ Lillian Smith

This drawing was made with Tuscan red charcoal pencil on paper.

Receive by email or subscribe in a reader

Black Cat

May 11, 2009


There is much mystery and lore surrounding black cats.  In some cultures they are considered omens of bad luck, while in others they’re considered good luck. 

Here in North America they are supposedly less likely to be adopted at shelters than other cats.  At the time we acquired our black cat Joey, we were actively searching for an all black cat.  Contrary to what one would believe of black cats, she is gentle and affectionate.

A small group of caring individuals finds new homes for stray cats found around the Fisherman’s Cove area in Eastern Passage.  These cats are called Cove Kitties.  Our cat Joey’s mother was one such Cove Kitty.  She was found pregnant and so Joey was born in the vet clinic.  Since then, she’s always been an indoor cat.

Due to problems with allergies among some of our family members, we’re now seeking a new home for Joey.  If you live in or near Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, please contact me by email if you’re interested in seeing if she would make a good fit into your household.

Receive by email or subscribe in a reader


April 8, 2009


If he was still running the trails, this month we would have celebrated Kulik’s 21st birthday.  He was an Alaskan Malamute and Grey Wolf cross:  a brilliant dog who is still greatly missed, though he passed into the afterlife many years ago, after simply falling asleep under a tree at a ripe old age.

The highlight of Kulik’s day was a toss-up between dropping off the kids at the school bus stop or running free on the trails out back to the bog.  He loved the attention lavished on him by neighborhood girls and was absolutely terrified of thunderstorms.  He had a weakness for chasing and catching rabbits and porcupines, much to everyone’s dismay.  His howling was haunting.

This drawing was done in black charcoal and graphite pencil.

Receive by email or subscribe in a reader

The Chess Players

April 4, 2009


Chess tournaments provide excellent opportunities for children to engage in a quiet social activity while exercising their young minds. With so many people sitting relatively still for long periods of time, they’re also an excellent place for artists to sketch subjects in thoughtful poses.

This drawing was created during such a tournament at Chocolate Lake Recreation Centre when my sons were younger. 

It’s drawn in black pen on manila paper.

Receive by email or subscribe in a reader

Salty Dog Blues

March 24, 2009


Standing on the corner with the lowdown blues
A great big hole in the bottom of my shoes
Honey let me be your salty dog.
Let me be your salty dog
Or I won’t be your man at all
Honey let me be your salty dog.

Salty was a good dog and a beautiful one at that.  I could always depend on his enthusiastic greeting whenever I visited his home.  He’ll be so missed.
This drawing of Salty in terra cotta charcoal pencil was inspired by a photo of him, taken with his ears blowing in the wind, on Signal Hill in Newfoundland.

Receive by email or subscribe in a reader

Children’s Portraits

March 5, 2009


The above children’s portraits are a few of the many I did last year.  Each little face carries within its features the unique qualities that the child will take with him or her into adulthood. 

A child grows up in the twinkling of an eye.  Though the time may seem longer on certain days, before you know it, they’ve grown into teenagers and then adults.  You wonder where the time went.  Once you’re a grandparent, the time seems to move even more quickly. 

We’ve had bad luck with children;  they’ve all grown up.

~Christopher Morley


 Receive by email or subscribe in a reader