Monday, May 01, 2017

IF: Shoe

It's very important to know the rules when learning how to tie your shoes. ;) No velcro or loafers - you've just got to have those laces!

Friday, April 21, 2017

Feel Good Friday Five

It's Friday, and that alone is something pretty special, but I was inspired by illustrator Gina Perry to make a list of 5 things that I'm super excited about. In no particular order . . .

1) I booked my flight to LA for the SCBWI Conference this July! Woot! Woot! I'm registered, got a roomie and now my flight is booked (with airline credit card points too! #winning) It's been 4 years since I went to my last SCBWI conference in LA. I'm already bubbling with excitement that I'm going back - wait for July! Whew! I could probably fly there myself!!

2) I've been revising a dummy book the past few weeks. I sent it to my dream agent and she asked for revisions. At first I was a little stuck because, face it, when you've looked at a story/pictures for so long it's hard to imagine it any other way. But I spent some time doodling, looking through my stash of favorite picture books for inspiration, and letting go of what was to make this book even better. I really like how it's coming along. I've realized that while it was good before, good can sometimes be a bit boring. Time to crank it to 11 and make it fantastic.

3) My postcard was in a photo tweeted by Giuseppe Castellano, Executive Art Director at Grosset & Dunlap. He posts pictures of all the illustration promo postcards he receives each week. Mine was right in the middle of his stash and that made me smile. I'm getting my work out there. Doing what it takes to break in to the publishing world, and believing in myself.

4) I was asked to design a T-shirt for my local chapter of SCBWI. I went to a workshop in Oklahoma a few months back and they had chapter t-shirts, so that got me thinking that we should have some too! Can't wait to wear one and spread the SCBWI love around town.

5) I've revised this one three times already. Basically what I want to say is that I'm living with an attitude of gratitude! I recently read "How the Secret Changed My Life" and it gave me goosebumps. I related to so much of it and recognized things that have come into my life as a result of the laws of attraction. I highly recommend reading it (and The Secret) Yes, I still have self doubt occasionally, but  as far as my path, now I have a sense of I CAN DO THIS. I believe. I'm stoked about children's picture books and I feel confident that this is my place in the world. I was given this desire years ago when I was in elementary school - it's the path I was meant to take. I feel more at home with my fellow SCBWI peeps than in an job I've ever had. I don't have to be the next Beverly Cleary or Eric Carle, but there is a place for me and I love that. I thank God every day for rekindling this feeling and for helping me reach my goals. I'm grateful for opportunities and talent to bring a smile to people with my art. :) I also recommend reaching out to those you admire/appreciate and say Thank You for making the world a better place. I did that recently, and I was overwhelmed by the love. I think that's what this world needs more of. Kindness, respect, appreciation, and sharing things to make the world better.

And just because I always feel blog posts are always better with art, here's a chickie I drew this week. Happy Friday!

Wednesday, April 05, 2017

I've gone to national SCBWI conferences in the past, but I am extra excited about this one. I feel like my work has gotten so much better than the last time I attended a major conference. I've learned more, I've grown as a writer & illustrator. I believe in myself more. It's a great feeling. I feel like I belong!

Now, I'm not going to lie, it's pricey. However, I see it as professional development. People all over the world have to put in time at conferences or other types of professional development for their jobs, why shouldn't we make that a priority too? Yes, I'm the one paying for it, but getting out there and networking with other children's writers & illustrators, agents, editors, art directors . . . learning, enjoying the company of other like-minded people, filling the creative well . . . it's totally worth it! I can't wait!!

My new motto is "Leap and a Net Will Appear!" This conference is being paid for by illustration jobs (they will appear, I'm sure). I'm leaping into the children's publishing world with a new excitement & gusto. After a time of questioning my place in the world, I'm positive this is where I'm supposed to be. It feels right. My goal is to give back - to repay the Universe for the years of enjoyment I've had with children's books. I want to make future kids smile with a funny story or colorful artwork.

I'm determined to hold a published picture book that I've written & illustrated!! In order to make that happen, I need to believe, learn more about the submission process/how to get a foot in the door, and create every day, I am a professional, and I deserve to attend this conference! :)

Friday, March 24, 2017

IF: Umbrella

This is from "Don't You Wonder About This World", a coloring book I illustrated for Warner Press.
I love the simplicity of B&W line work of coloring books. I illustrated 5 coloring books for Warner Press, and really enjoyed the process. Sometimes simple can be very freeing.

Thursday, March 23, 2017

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

The last couple of days during lunchtime I've been reading "How The Secret Changed My Life". I've read The Secret before, and believe in the power of positive thinking & the power of attraction, but haven't consistently put it into action. (I have a pair of sparkly purple Converse and an extremely sweet dog that I believe came to me because I put it out there though.)

Today, I was reading a chapter about how to use The Secret to gain good health. At first I didn't think that really applied to me. Thankfully, I'm healthy. And then it dawned on me that it would apply to my thyroid! I've had a low-producing thyroid for about 30 years and lately my doctors can't seem to get my medications to level out. I've always been negative about how weak my thyroid is and how its the reason I'm tired, or can't lose weight (in reality it's probably not 100% to blame). I've decided to show some love to my little butterfly shaped thyroid gland.

So, I present to you my happy, incredibly healthy & super strong thyroid gland!! He's a powerhouse! Never have you heard of a thyroid as efficient as mine. The next time I go to the doctor for bloodwork, she will tell me I don't need medication anymore because my amazing thyroid is working perfectly. :) Whoohoooo! You are doing a fabulous job, Deb's Thyroid!

Monday, March 20, 2017

 I love illustrating for preschool kids. I worked with preschoolers in a 3year old class for 5 years, and really enjoyed them. They're always saying funny things, and love to give hugs. Potty accidents and temper tantrums were not my favorite, of course.

My favorite memory is when a few little girls wanted to play beauty shop with me after their naptime. They had a pretend cellphone crooked in their neck talking away as they combed my hair. It was so funny!

Naptime, coloring/artwork, lunch, playground fun, storytime, there are so many possibilities to show preschoolers interacting.

Here are two new additions to my portfolio. I'm aiming at simple, colorful and preschool-friendly. I'd love to work on a board book or picture book for the very young.

Hope you enjoy them. Thanks for stopping by!