Blog Archives

October is a great month for arts and crafts

With October coming up quickly and the Canadian Thanksgiving just a few weeks away there will be a lot to do to prepare for the Holiday. October can almost be called craft month with so many options available for families to create amazing art. Think about the month for moment, you have the beautiful colours of Fall, Thanksgiving with family festivities, and then the creative time of Halloween, all in one month. This is the perfect month to take your art to the next level. Here are some tips that will help you boost your arts and crafts and make your celebrations creative and unique.

Get out for some inspiration

The colours of Fall are one of the best reasons for living in the Northern United States and Canada. Team that beauty with beautiful weather and Fall is a great time to get outdoors and enjoy this incredible time of year. A sketch-walk or hike can be a great way to be inspired by the time of year. Just take a sketchbook, some pencils and coloured pencils or crayons and head outdoors to enjoy nature. If you are not the drawing type then take the camera or just go for a family hike and enjoy the colours. You will be inspired by the colours and it is a great way to collect items to enhance that family dinner.

Here is the sketch-walk I took at Crawford Lake if you would like to see how a sketch-walk works.


Get creative with pumpkin carving

Of course Fall wouldn’t be the same without pumpkins. Just pick some up while your are out for that nature or sketch-walk. Get the kids creating a unique piece for themselves by having them draw out their design and then cut out the pumpkin to create a 3-D work of art. Here is how to start drawing out the design.

Have the kids draw out their design and then transfer it onto tracing paper. Once on the tracing paper the drawing can be transferred onto the pumpkin with the rubbing technique. For the rubbing technique put carbon paper behind the sketch or colour the back of the tracing paper and then trace it onto the pumpkin.

As for cutting out a pumpkin I know nothing about that so here is a link to an article from Martha Stewart.

Draw out that Halloween costume

Oh sure you could go buy a Halloween costume but it is much more creative to design your own. Draw out those costumes in a sketchbook or paper and then go get those material to put it all together. The kids will learn drawing techniques and come out with a unique creation as well.

Here is a link to some drawing videos if you need help in that area.

So I hope that helps to make your October an experience to remember. Fall is a beautiful time of year to be inspired by art and get the whole family involved in a beautiful outdoor experience.

Enjoy Fall!

About the Author

Bruce Outridge is a cartoonist and caricature artist from Burlington Ontario. The services of Bruce Outridge Productions offers live caricature entertainment, art instruction, and much more. To learn more about Bruce Outridge Productions visit

Improve Your Child’s Creativity with Art Supplies

Go into any office supply store and you will see a flurry of activity in the back to school section. Sale prices are all around and there will be many items to choose from. The tendency for most parents is to just get as many pencils and highlighters as possible to last the year. If you are the parent to a budding artist then you may want to take a moment to actually plan out the supplies you need for the year as this could be a great way to improve your child’s creativity.

We all learn in different ways, some need more visual clues and others take lots of notes. In fact it’s been reported that doodling improves retention of material. Don’t believe me check out this article on the a study done on the topic.,8599,1882127,00.html. Teaming the way people learn to how they like to take down information can help improve how much of the material is remembered, but also makes the review process much more enjoyable.

So how will this information help improve your child’s creativity?

First let’s look at the notebooks your child may be working in. You may want to buy your child those basic lined styled notebooks, but is that the best option? If your child is a budding artist it may be holding back some of that creativity with the lines. Think about the subject and it may be more beneficial to buy notebooks with blank pages and even possible with different colours. This way the notebook becomes a visual journal that is not only more memorable but encourages review of the material. I have included a picture of my sketchbook pages from a convention to give you an idea of what I am talking about.

Bruce's Notebook

What about the drawing instruments such as pencils and pens?

There are two major items that every artist puts energy into finding the best quality available. The item they draw or paint on and the item they draw or paint with. Quality paper or canvas and quality paint, brushes, or drawing materials are key to helping create great art. So when buying back to school supplies could you be helping your child improve their creativity with decent materials?

The best way to start is to ask your child if appropriate what they like to draw with. Do they draw more with pencil, pen, or marker? I myself rarely use pencil anymore. Once I started doing pen and ink work as a child I abandoned the pencil for the most part. Other artists I know use only pencil so it really is a personal choice.

If you are looking at buying colour materials here is a guide to help.

You may want to just pick up those big packs of coloured pencils or mega packs of highlighters but before you do let me offer another option. If possible buy the colours separately. This is why most art stores don’t sell their products in pack because many artists don’t buy their materials this way. Let’s say I need a red colour. The best way to buy that is to buy a red pencil crayon, then a darker red pencil, and then a lighter red pencil. This way you can colour a shirt red, then use a darker red for shadow, and lighter red for highlights. This technique can also be done in other ways with blue colours but it gives you an idea of the process of shopping for colours.

These tips can help not only improve creativity, encourage note taking, and improve retention of material. I have found it a great way to help remember information during conferences, seminars, and presentations. If you have a budding artist that likes to draw this may be a great way to encourage getting homework done and improving their artistic talent. Hey it couldn’t hurt!

About the Author

Bruce Outridge is a professional artist /cartoonist from Burlington Ontario Canada. Bruce has been drawing since he was ten years and offers custom illustration and design services for clients specializing in caricatures and cartoons. To learn more about Bruce and his work visit his website at

Are you on the right wave?

It’s funny how areas go in waves for events. One month you will have many events in one area and others times the events all seem to be in another area. This happened to me in Brantford Ontario. I got booked for a returning corporate event in that city, then another event the next week, and then another one. Since the end of November I have now been booked for eight events in that city alone. Now I don’t live far and have done events their in the past, but it looks like that area is growing leaps and bounds. Many times it takes one person to get the ball rolling in a certain area. Thank you to the City of Brantford, Brantford United Way, Mohawk Chapel, and Six Nations for having us out to events. It was a pleasure working with you.

About the Artist

Bruce Outridge Productions offers custom illustration and design services for weddings and corporate events. Bruce is an artist from Southern Ontario Canada and is available for many types of events from weddings top private parties. To learn more about Bruce and his work or to book Bruce for your next event visit his website at

Cartoons make great advertisements!

Remember when illustration was the only thing around? Okay maybe you don’t but there was a time. Photography quickly became hot for advertising as computers made manipulating images easier. Cartoons have been starting to make a comeback for many advertising and editorial needs and caricatures are a great way to do create a unique ad for publications. We have done many cartoon ads in both caricatures and general cartooning in the past and continue to get more requests. If you are looking to make an impact in a different way with your next advertisement then think about cartooning for a change. It allows people to read your ad longer, after all isn’t that the goal. Here are a few we did for our clients.

About the Artist

Bruce Outridge Productions offers custom illustration and design services for advertising and editorial projects. Specializing in caricatures and cartoons allows for creative ways to market or advertise your next project. To learn more about Bruce Outridge Productions or to discuss your next project visit

Old School Dispatch By Bruce Outridge Productions

Old School Dispatch Cartoon

The trucking industry is getting better, but there was a time when dispatchers ruled your life. This cartoon was based on the old system of dispatching when choices were limited. It was previously published in Ontario Trucking News Magazine.

About the Artist

Bruce Outridge is a cartoonist from Southern Ontario Canada. he has a 30 year history in the trucking industry and much of his cartoon work is based on the industry. To learn more about Bruce and his work visit his website at

Artists get together to make retirement home event a success!-Testimonial

I recently did an event for a retirement home in London Ontario and unexpectedly was sharing the stage with other artists. I was there to do caricatures and had an amazing time drawing the guests, check out the what the client had to say below. The other artists weren’t drawing, but were certainly amazing. Check out the images below and you will see what I mean.

Here is what the client had to say:

Review received on 9-19-2016 at 9:41 am (PDT)
The entire experience was wonderful, Bruce was the hit of our Open House event. Very professional and personable. We can’t wait to have him back for another event! Definitely and experience to remember for all of our residents!
Reviewer: Allison Davis
Event Date: September 18th, 2016
Services Provided: Caricaturist
Rating: 5 out of 5

The first one I did not know, but here is the story. An old tree on the property fell down and the owner commissioned a wood carver to create an amazing piece of art to hang on the wall. Check out this beautiful wood carving.

wood carving

The second artist was a man named Tony who was the Chef at the retirement home. He created this wonderful table of food that no one wanted to touch because it was so beautiful. He was certainly an artist in his own right. Amazing!


About the Author

Bruce Outridge is a caricature artist from Burlington Ontario Canada and is available for corporate vents, weddings and more offering live caricature entertainment for guests. You can learn more about Bruce or book him for your next event from his website at

Have Your Entertainment Plan in Place Before Your Event With This Event Checklist!

One of the biggest problems I see as an entertainer at events is the lack of a plan in place for entertainment. Many rooms are filled to capacity with guests amenities, food tables, seating items, serving systems and more, and of course it is important that the room looks nice when guests arrive. But at what cost is that importance to the event in entertainment terms?

Often entertainment is arranged by a particular person at the event and that is not always the same people coordinating the room. For instance I will often be booked by the Bride and Groom, but will deal with the Wedding Coordinator on location. Often instructions given to one are lost in communication with so many things going on. Then when an entertainer arrives there is a struggle to find room or find a location.

This happened to me not too long ago at a corporate event where two artists were scheduled to appear. I was the first artist to arrive and saw the location where we were supposed to work. They had a small table set up with four chairs. Two chairs for the guests being drawn and two for the artists on the other side. Here is the problem! Two artists could not fit side by side at the table without bumping arms and elbows while drawing, not good for the end drawing result. On the guest side there was only room for one guest in a chair. Again this is a problem as at many events guests like to have several people in the picture or want to be drawn as couples such as at a wedding. I myself draw with an easel and was able to let the artist have the table, but now that expanded the room needed for that particular entertainment.

Another issue that is often overlooked is when an artist has to move during an event. When I draw at weddings during the warmer months I am usually asked to be located outside on a patio and then asked to moveevent group inside after the dinner for the rest of the evening. This is no problem as long as the location has been organized ahead of time, otherwise it is a scramble to find room for me and my equipment if the space hasn’t been marked off.

Entertainers that arrive after the start of a function and leave before it ends are often overlooked for space. When planning space for performers it is important to ask what type of equipment they may have and how much space they need. I have included a checklist at the bottom of this article for you as a starting point. Every venue is different so it is important to go over the checklist with each performer that you hire.

A professional entertainer wants your event to be a successful as possible, for you and for them. We often try to be as flexible as possible, but we still need room to do our job properly. I hope your next event is a great success and that this article helped. Good luck with the next event!

Event Checklist

  • How much space is required for each entertainer? A DJ needs much more room than a caricature artist depending on equipment.
  • If people will be watching or lining up, is there enough room for the line?
  • If the event is outdoors is there an alternative option should the weather turn bad?
  • If the area will have dimmed lights is lighting available for that area alone? Many entertainers carry their own lights for such a reason but may need to be near a hydro outlet.
  • Does the entertainer need hydro? Are there any specific hydro requirements? If DJ equipment will be plugged in you wouldn’t want another entertainer plugging stuff in on top of that.
  • Who should the entertainer check in with upon arrival at the location?

These are just a few questions and an entertainer’s particular setup may have special requirements. It is best to check with each performer on their needs to have a successful event.

About the Author

Bruce Outridge Productions offers caricature event services for weddings, corporate events, and more. Well known in the Ontario Canada area for creating a great experience at events for people of all ages both young and old. To learn more about Bruce Outridge and his event service please visit his website at

Family Fun Day was Real Fun!-Testimonial

A couple of weeks ago I did a Family Fun Day for a Secondary school in Mississauga. The people involved were awesome to deal with and I hope to work with them again in the future. Here is what they had to say.

Live Caricature Event Testimonial

Name or Company: West Credit’s Annual Plant Sale and Family Fun Day

Service provided: Live caricature entertainment

Service rating: Excellent

Additional Comment: Bruce was great. We really enjoyed having him at our event. The kids and adults loved him and they had nothing but positive things to say. He even stayed after his time to accommodate the last couple of groups. It was a great day and we would love to have him back.

About the Author

Bruce Outridge is an illustrator from Burlington Ontario specializing cartoons and caricatures. He offers live event service and gift caricatures on commissions. To learn more visit

Entrepreneur Draws Entrepreneurs

The entrepreneur artist drawing entrepreneurs at an entrepreneur event! I know that’s confusing but that is exactly what I did for the BDC. Here is what they had to say about the event.

Live caricature testimonial

Name or Company: Aimee Hales

Service provided: Live caricature entertainment

Service rating: Excellent

Additional Comment: It was a pleasure working with you Bruce! Our clients and our team at BDC had a great time with you and really enjoyed your work, it was a lot of fun! Thank you!

About the Author

Bruce Outridge is an illustrator from Burlington Ontario specializing cartoons and caricatures. He offers live event service and gift caricatures on commissions. To learn more visit

I found out how to improve my golf game. Here’s how!

I am always trying to improve myself and golf is one of those games that are continually chasing. Even though I am improving I thought of something the other day that all coaches including myself have done for teams. Why didn’t I think of it? I am certainly going to try this on my nest outing, “The Pep Talk!” Maybe the golf balls don’t understand why they are in the game?

The-Pep-Talk-CartoonAbout the Artist

Bruce Outridge is a cartoonist and caricature artist from Burlington Ontario Canada. Form ore information check out his website at