Happy Valentines Day! <3
I thought this would be a great day to share an ongoing personal project with you guys. Some of you may have noticed on social media that little girl that I've been doodling in my sketchbook? Her name is Meg. It's a children's story that I realized I've been wanting to create for a long time, but only recently have been able to put into words.
The core of the story is about a persistent little girl who doesn't let anything get in the way of what she wants. And yes, there will be bubbles and glowing stuff, because that's just how I roll.
There has been a lot of recurring advice offered to me about the field of illustration (and about any freelance path, for that matter). Pros often say to practice your craft everyday, remember the core fundamentals of image-making, don't wear your PJs to your desk, manage your time well, and lots of other very relative points. But for me, the most resounding nugget of advice is the one that speaks directly to the willpower of an individual. And that is...
"The only way to get what you want is to become a human yourself!"
I've learned that success is achieved by wanting it more than ANYTHING else in the world. All caps. This means that sometimes, a freelancer needs to swim against the current, take well-meaning advice from other people with a grain of salt, and chart their own course while there are so many other routes that may look easier to navigate. My story is going to explore this concept for a child. Essentially, this is a book that I wish I read when I began telling everyone, "I'm going to be an artist when I grow up!"
If this sounds like a book you're interested in reading to yourself or a child in your life, first of all, I'm excited that it interests you! Second of all, consider following me on the journey of creating it. Periodically, I'll be posting WIP sketches, spreads, and other tidbits about how the book is progressing. I'm also wondering whether I should dedicate a part of the website to its progress so that people don't need to scroll through their various feeds to find what the heck I'm working on.
So where am I at right now? Well, besides ironing out the stylistic choices of the art, I finished draft number 1. I will be asking for the feedback of my peers and mentors to tell me what they think is working – and what isn't working – about the initial storyline.
While I did illustrate the wonderful Connie's Long Way Home and have read many children's books before, I'm not going to write a perfect draft on the fly. I need backup. So this is going to be an ongoing process, as it should be!
I will keep you posted as this personal project gets further along. As always, I am open to hearing new ideas, getting feedback on my work, and hearing about you handle the process of making a children's book. If you'd like to swap stories with me for some mutual feedback, that's fantastic!
This Valentine's Day, make the decision to commit to what you love. Thanks for reading!