Judith P. Raynault studio

It's The Most Wonderful Time

Once again this year, I've been yearning to start listening to Christmas music in November. And once again I really enjoyed Mariah Carey's call to enjoy the holiday cheer.

I hope you're in the same frame of mind, because we'll be going full Christmas.

A Christmas Window

You've all seen this image by now, if not in my last newsletter, then probably repeatedly in IG (I'm trying to be better at marketing and apparently you need to expose people to your product at least 6 times before they buy?!), but I wanted to talk about the inspirations behind it.

One of my favourite things about the festive season is walking through residential areas and peering into people's homes to look at their decorations. Well, to be fair, I love looking into people's homes at all times...but around Christmas they seem to make sure that outsiders can enjoy their decorations almost as much as they themselves. Although it might also be because the only room for a tree is by the window!

Illustration close-up

I think part of the reason I set my illustration at night is because of an illustration I had in mind from when I was a kid. We used to receive something akin to the Argos catalogue, called 'Distribution au Consommateur', in early November. In it there was obviously everything you could want, pages upon pages of toys. Although I don't remember any specific toy, I have a vivid memory of an illustration on one of the covers. In it there were kids in front of a traditional shop window full of toys. It was nighttime, with snow falling, and the only light came from inside the shop. It looked magical to me. And not just because I wanted toys.

This isn't the exact illustration I have in mind, but you get the gist.

Subconsciously, another reason why it's set at night could be because of the trope of someone outside in the dark—and usually cold—looking into a house that looks warm and inviting. À la The Little Match Girl, a story in which a little girl spends New Year's Eve outside in the snow and tries to keep herself warm by burning the matches she's meant to sell... Yet another joyful story by Hans Christian Andersen!

The Little Match Girl. Crop of an illustration by Paul Durand

The idea behind my card series is that you start from the outside looking into the warm and welcoming house, then you step inside for a joyful dinner, and end by winding down with a book in front of the fireplace. Instead of being left out, you're invited inside the house to take part in the festivities.

Hope you have a lovely holiday season, whether you celebrate Christmas or not!

Judith xx


Book recommendation

November 13 to 19 was Transgender Awareness Week. It seems fitting then to recommend The Transgender Issue, An Argument for Justice by Shon Faye. In it, Faye presents the facts about how it is to live as a trans person at the moment. She also gives pointers as to what should be done to improve their lives.

I can't really say I enjoyed the book, because it's never fun to read about human beings having to fight to be recognised as such. But it's a great and at times moving read and I dog eared many pages to come back to them later.

Shop news

Last chance to buy my art online at the current price. A4 and A5 prints are going up by £5 next year to compensate for some of the increase in production costs. I added the option FREE SHIPPING for Christmas for all UK and EU orders (sorry Canadian friends!).

You can also buy them in person as I'll be at Kings Cross, The Crossing, on 11 Dec!

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© Judith Poitras-Raynault 2024
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