Blue dragon watercolour painting @ by Soma

Little Stories – Little Inspirations

Blue dragon watercolour painting @ by Soma


Hi Everyone!  Unlike this peacefully sleeping dragonling, I have been a busy bee in my atelier for the last few weeks, playing with every single principle of art that I love.  Summer continues to be an indoor time for me, while The Girl and Her Cat cat continue their adventures through the distant lands of the North.



The Artist Apron



A few months ago, I asked my friend Mary if she would be willing to make an artist apron for me.  I was overjoyed when she agreed.  She also suggested that we do an exchange instead of my paying her for the apron, which was extremely generous of her.    I made her knitted mitts and hats.  I will share those another day.

She not only found the perfect shade of olive green which I requested, she also paired it with wine red and made a reversible apron for me.  She even monogrammed my name on it.  It is such an honour to wear the apron when I work in my atelier.



Refurbishing the Scroll


Soma @



I love playing my violin.  I had been looking for a violin scroll shaped hook and found one recently.  The original finish on it was abysmal.  While my husband sanded and painted it, I worked on staining the wood with my homemade black walnut stain.  Now it is ready for me to hang this beautiful apron when I leave the atelier at the end of my workday.



My Play List


With the apron and my favourite music on, I get lost in the little world that is my atelier for hours on end, playing and experimenting.  I have been making good progress.  Too many to share in one post, so I will write about them incrementally. 



Handmade sketchbooks @ by Soma


I am hand binding all of my store-bought sketchbooks, then I will add some designs on them. So much nicer than the commercial spiral bound or black vinyl bound books.


Language of the Rising Sun


Snow in Japanese Kanji @ by Soma


One thing you probably would not guess about me is that I play video games and I often listen to video game music while I work.  In recent days, playing one of the games inspired me to learn Japanese.  I have always had an interest in linguistics.  After learning a couple of modern languages and Latin, I wanted to learn something completely different.  Japanese is quite difficult, but it also has been fun so far.



Distant Pages


While I am studying the language of a distant land,  the Girl and Her Cat continue with their adventures of visiting the northern lands and collecting stories.  This set of of paintings is possibly my most favourite in this book.  I mixed inspirations from my own travels and mythology, and created new stories.

Please click on the image thumbnails to see the pictures and read about their wanderings –




The Runes


Blacksmith's knife with runes watercolour painting @ by Soma


I painted this little blacksmith’s knife after my own that I picked up in Sweden.  Mine is a plain black one, but I couldn’t help engraving the Girl’s knife.  I also made a red sheath for her so she doesn’t accidentally hurt herself.  While painting the set, I got the idea of using runes for protection.  When the dragonling charmed her knife and the sheath, the runes appeared.



Viking axe watercolour painting @ by Soma


I wanted to draw an axe of a woman, and slowly a story formed.  This one belonged to a dauntless giantess who helped protect and build.  The engraved snowdrop flowers were her ward charms.  The compass on the poll showed her the way.  The same runes from the Girl’s blade appear on the axe too.  I wonder if a dragon was involved in the making of the Shadowcaster.



A Little Dragon


Blue dragon watercolour painting @ by Soma


I love dragons is an understatement and I love this little dragonling.  He is really sweet and friendly.  Like all children, the Girl and Her Cat and the dragonling became fast friends.  If you were wondering, his mother ended up helping the Girl and Her Cat on their journey.


Here are the previous posts where I shared The Girl and Her Cat stories from Distant Pages book –

Near And Far

Curiosity And Creativity



Until next time,


I am linking up with the linky parties on my Events And Links page.  Please pay a visit to some of them.



51 thoughts on “Little Stories – Little Inspirations

  • Amy Johnson July 9, 2022 at 05:56

    Oh my goodness, that apron is stunning. I want one! And I love the hook designed to hold it as well.

  • Michelle July 6, 2022 at 12:15

    You are amazingly creative and talented, Soma! I am fascinated by all of your projects. Look for your feature in Sunday’s Link-up Potpourri.


  • Andrea Priebe July 3, 2022 at 08:41

    Well, Soma, I found you prolific and profound … endless ideas and the energy to put them to paper (or cloth as in your beautiful apron) I have been trying to learn Thai, but find that my old poop memory is lazy and though I learn it , I soon forget it :( So, that is to say, I admire your effort to learn Japanese and I wish you well with your efforts. Ahhh and the violin. I played violin as a youngster and though I didn’t stick to it long enough to become really good at it, I learned to love the music of the violin … would love to hear you play. You could post a recording or a video of you playing, right? So all in all you are the artist we all dream of being but seldom reach that status. It has been a pleasure perusing your art … I hope we see more of you at Rain’s TAD. It would be hard to pick a favorite as there are many, but I think a safe bet would be your wonderful Dragonling :) Love your enthusiasm …

    Andrea @ From the Sol

  • Jayne @ Sticky Mud and Belly Laughs July 3, 2022 at 07:19

    Beautiful apron. I love that it is personalised too.
    Interesting to hear that you are learning Japanese, I’ve always thought how hard that looks to learn. We like learning different languages in our homeschool sessions. My eldest is learning French and Polish at the moment.
    The Girl and Her Cat paintings are brilliant! Love love love your work!
    Have a great week ahead Soma. x

  • RachelSwirl July 2, 2022 at 12:47

    I adore your dragon image – it’s stunning. My word, you are so very talented! Thanks for sharing and for linking up with #MySundaySnapshot.

  • Sam July 1, 2022 at 09:58

    I like the dragon story so sweet x

  • Louise (Fundy Blue) July 1, 2022 at 09:49

    What a wonderful world to get lost in, Soma! The apron your friend made is perfect. I really loved the dragonling and the blue and gold tree. Good luck and progress as you tackle Japanese!

  • sam July 1, 2022 at 09:30

    I like the story of the dragon so sweet X

  • Dee June 30, 2022 at 21:56

    That little dragon is such a beautiful creature.

    Your new aprons looks so neat. I’d love to see the mitts & hats you knitted. :)
    Love your hook, too. The shade of stain used (black walnut?) is looks great on it.

  • Nicole/DVArtist June 30, 2022 at 14:49

    Hi Soma. That apron is amazing. Better yet the barter, a nice trade. I certainly like all of your art but the dragon is my favorite. I would love to hear you play your violin.

  • Sarah MumofThree World June 30, 2022 at 05:32

    Your apron is fantastic! I love the way you keep yourself busy in so many creative ways. Good luck with learning Japanese!
    I particularly like your painting of the axe and the story behind it.

  • Peabea June 29, 2022 at 12:36

    Oh, I love the apron. How sweet for her to do that for you. You sound so busy and happy. Love your artwork. Thanks for the link to the To Do Tuesday link up. May have to try doing that and linking. Thanks for visiting Pictorial Tuesday. Have a nice holiday weekend.

  • Joanne June 29, 2022 at 03:49

    That apron is beautiful!! I love the hook that you found/made for it too. Sounds like you are progressing nicely on all your projects and as always your art work is incredible.

  • Lydia C. Lee June 28, 2022 at 14:29

    Lovely work, as always!

  • Linda June 28, 2022 at 04:37

    Thanks again for linking up at To Do Tuesday! :)

  • Anne Sweet June 28, 2022 at 01:46

    I often wonder how you manage to do so much, music, art, book binding, knitting and video games!! I love your apron, it’s beautiful what a lovely exchange. As always I love your art work too, the dragon is beautiful. I look forward to seeing more.

  • Angie June 27, 2022 at 20:28

    P.S. Thanks for linking to Mosaic Monday!

  • Linda K June 27, 2022 at 12:48

    There is so much to love here Soma! Your dragon is sweet. And that apron is fabulous- what a perfectly wonderful style too.
    I love violin music- I bet you are a wonderful player!
    You’ve been quite productive, and I’ve enjoyed all your journal pages. And I know your handmade journals are special:) Have a wonderful week!

  • mireille June 27, 2022 at 06:54

    I can just imagine the stories with each of those paintings! That is really cool!

  • Heidrun June 27, 2022 at 05:00

    I enjoyed reading.

    Happy MosaicMonday

  • Veronica Lee June 27, 2022 at 03:02

    Your paintings are lovely, Soma.

    And that apron is beautiful.

    Happy Monday!

  • Natasha Mairs June 27, 2022 at 01:24

    your paintings are lovely. Love the blue dragon and the little house in the snow #MMBC

  • Susan June 26, 2022 at 18:09

    I like your apron and I love the dragonling.

  • Tammie June 26, 2022 at 17:18

    My goodness, you have many interests. But then again, most artists make art of life and everything they do. I love that way of living.
    Your paintings are lovely. Your new sketchbook covers are so much nicer, I agree.

    Enjoy your classy apron.

  • Juliet (craftygreenpoet) June 26, 2022 at 11:02

    What a beautiful apron! Lovely to see your art too and good luck learning Japanese, it must be a tricky language.

  • Riitta k June 26, 2022 at 08:32

    It was lovely to emerge in your fairytiale-like creative projects. So charming!

  • Debbie June 26, 2022 at 08:07

    you are full of surprises and have so many interests & talents. i would have never guessed you play video games too, i wonder when you sleep!! the apron from mary is adorable, so well fashioned…it could be worn for cooking or art class!!

  • Kim Carberry June 26, 2022 at 07:32

    That apron is fantastic. Well done Mary and that hook looks great too. You have been busy, beautiful work.

  • Alison June 26, 2022 at 03:34

    You have been busy Soma! I love your beautiful blue dragonling, and the apron that your friend made is simply gorgeous! The hook you and your husband made is just perfect for it.
    I look forward to your next post.
    Alison xx

  • A ShutterBug Explores June 25, 2022 at 10:04

    Your little dragon is precious ~ done so well and the artist apron is lovely (I used to have one that style) And the Runes always fascinate me ~ ~ You have been so creative ~ Wow! Xo

    Wishing you good health, laughter and love in your days,

    A ShutterBug Explores,
    aka (A Creative Harbor)

  • Lavender Dreams June 25, 2022 at 09:32

    You are learning Japanese….wow! I am impressed. That must be quite a challenge. I would love to learn another language but those that know me tell me I need to learn to speak English first! hahaha! I have a serious Southern drawl. LOVE your art and you hand bound books. You have so many talents. Oh the apron is perfect and I know you’ll love wearing it!

  • Rain Frances June 25, 2022 at 07:43

    Hi Soma! ☺ I do love your little dragon, she is just so sweet and doesn’t seem to pose a threat at all! ☺ Your artwork is lovely – and you play violin, that’s awesome! The apron your friend made is so well done and I love that you “bartered” and knit her some goodies too!!! ♥

  • Eileen June 25, 2022 at 02:37

    Hello Soma,

    Your new apron is lovely, I like the hook too. Your art work is wonderful, I love the sweet dragonling.
    Thanks for sharing the story of The Girl and her Cat. Thank you for linking up and sharing your post.
    Take care, have a happy weekend. PS, thank you for leaving me a comment.

  • Angie June 24, 2022 at 21:07

    Soma – a lovely apron! I love listening to music when I am writing or doing anything creative – somehow it seems to get the juices flowing! Our son plays a lot of video games, and he has shared some of the music with us. Very “young”! Good for you to learn Japanese! Enjoy your weekend!

  • John's Island June 24, 2022 at 20:30

    Hi Soma, Your blog is simply one of the most inspirational blogs I have found. The way you combine your creativity with art is wonderful. What a cool apron! The violin scroll shaped hook is perfect for one who loves playing the violin. Thank you for adding a new word to my vocabulary … I should have known “atelier” … a workshop or studio, especially one used by an artist or designer. You inspire me to try hand binding of my store-bought sketchbooks! Lastly, your art is super! Thank you so much for your recent kind comment on my blog. Wishing you the best from Seattle! John

  • The Joyful Quilter June 24, 2022 at 19:58

    What a lovely apron to protect your clothing while you work! I don’t understand why (or how) you would hand bind your store-bought sketchbooks, Soma. Thanks for sharing the further adventures of The Girl and Her Cat!

  • Mary June 24, 2022 at 17:20

    So glad you are enjoying your apron, Soma. It was a pleasure making it for you. I LOVE the hook. The walnut stain is gorgeous. I should have consulted you for a quilt ladder that I recently stained. I did not get it the color I really wanted. Your recent art is so pretty and delightfully detailed. Just beautiful!

  • NatureFootstep June 24, 2022 at 15:36

    what a great idea with the The Artist Apron. And for the exchange with your friend.
    Love the nwe images for your story. Especially the cute little dragon :)

  • Bill June 24, 2022 at 08:39

    Your art would not have looked out of place in my Sons art collage where we went to a private showing last night. Really Beautiful

  • Erika June 24, 2022 at 05:56

    I’m jealous you’ve had so much art time. I’ve been squeezing in what I can, but between my gardens and my studio being unpacked after a big project, I am missing as much art time as I usually have. I love your sleeping dragon piece. And your apron is great. I like how it wraps around you. Is it your friend’s pattern? I hope you have a great weekend and lots of art time also. hugs-Erika

  • Linda June 24, 2022 at 04:20

    It’s always a treat to visit your blog. Your apron is fantastic! I am enjoying details about the girl and her cat and dragonling, as well as the beautiful illustrations. My 26 yo nephew plays video games with his online friends and has had plans to visit Japan for 3 years. He really wants to live there. He has learned a smattering of the language. What will you do with your kitty blankets?
    I’m so glad you shared with us at To Do Tuesday!

  • gillena June 24, 2022 at 03:42

    Your aprons are simply designed and so cute, Luv the art today.
    Happy you dropped by. Thanks for linking up at Art For Fun Friday.


  • Valerie-Jael June 24, 2022 at 00:45

    Hi Soma, your art is beautiful, as always, and you get sooo much done in a week, well done! LOVE that apron! And your little book and tales of the North are fantastic. Have a good week, take care, hugs, Valerie

  • Christine June 23, 2022 at 18:52

    Sweet dragonling. Enjoy your art time with your beautiful new apron!

  • Connie Griffin June 23, 2022 at 17:45

    So wonderful to have a new apron to create in and it be monogramed too, no one else allowed to wear it :) I like the idea that it is reversible too.
    Your list looks like you have been able to accomplish a lot and have some fun things in the works and planning on more to come!
    The little dragonling is so sweet and I do love all the details you put on the knife, sheath and axe.
    Enjoy the rest of your week!

  • Kim June 23, 2022 at 17:35

    I can see you in my mind’s eye, Soma, sitting in your atalier wearing your lovely apron, imagining, drawing, painting and weaving delightful stories for hours on end. It sounds the most blissful of places.

  • Sue June 23, 2022 at 16:50

    You have been very busy Soma, your apron is beautiful, isn’t it great that you could trade! I always enjoy your books and paintings.

  • Carol June 23, 2022 at 15:38

    Love your new apron – so cute. Your paintings are so marvelous – wonderful post!

  • Dixie June 23, 2022 at 15:18

    Hi Soma,
    My, you have gotten a lot done. Bravo!
    I so enjoyed the story. And the “Shadowcaster” name made me smile.
    A very apt name. Wonderful paintings too.
    Your new apron is perfect. So beautifully made.

  • Karen June 23, 2022 at 05:48

    I just love your apron and have wanted to get several like that as I am a total mess in the kitchen and although I have a apron I always forget to put it on until I have splattered a shirt! Like last night I was making home made pasta and tomato sauce and now my white shirt is covered in pasta sauce oops!
    I love your little paintings and and wish I could paint like that – I had bought one of your little sketch books some months back and have yet to use it – I’m thinking first what to use it for so I don’t ruin it – I want something pretty in it – but what I am not an artist like you

  • Kathy June 23, 2022 at 03:24

    Good morning, what a fun filled post-you have been very busy. Love seeing your art very much, love your apron too, I remember way back when ,my Mom and Grandmother always wore aprons. We are sooo hot here too that I am in the house most of the day-but I have not been as productive as you. Hugs

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