Commission Mission

I’ve had four commissions this month! Yippee!

However not all of them were children’s book related, actually most of them were NOT so I won’t post them on here. I will however post the ones that I do think might relate to children’s books.

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This one unfortunately didn’t work out, but I did like working on the image.

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This is a WIP and wasn’t intended for a PB, however it looks very middle grade I believe. Who knows! I could illustrate a middle grade one day.

Last month AND this month were both pretty busy! I should start writing reviews again, I did read just about fifty picture books last month haha. Plenty to write about!

Passion Projects

As I continue to look through my notes from the conference I realize that… sheesh I have alotta notes.

That’s a good thing though!

These next set of notes are from a presentation titled “Passion Project”that was given by Alyssa Nassner, one of the people who critiqued my portfolio. Mostly for illustrators, but I think you can apply this to writing as well.

To start out, a passion project is a series of works that focus on a specific skill or topic, whatever the illustrator (or maybe writer!) is passionate about.

What makes a passion project? She listed:

  1.  Motivation (The will!)
  2. Inspiration (Idea)
  3. Creative Freedom (No one tells me what to do!)
  4. Time (Carve out time in you schedule!!!)

What does a passion project do?

  1. Improves work through practice.
  2. Increases online visibility.
  3. Demonstrates a consistent art style.
  4. Show cases interests (what inspires creativity?)
  5. Inspires others.

What should YOU do?

  1. Ask yourself what interests you?
  2. What skills would you like to improve?
  3. What type of industries interests you?
  4. Is there a grab in the market?
  5. What is fun and makes you happy?
  6. SET A REALISTIC GOAL!!! (This one is in all caps for me haha)

Nassner also goes into a bit about social media (side note, she pretty much scolded me for not having a URL or domain name, whoopsies, need to do that.) Pinterest and Instagram seem to be the big ones. Twitter, Facebook, and tumblr are others.

Basically, if you’re making a passion project share it! Everywhere! 

To end, my personal passion projects will be to work my on my line work with a weekly illustration, and to work on figure drawing/painting.

The line work will be a weekly project where the figure drawing/paintings will be a daily thing, starting next month when I clear my shed of the winterly spiders.

And this is where I begin my passion project.

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Hope you guys have fun with yours!

From Dreaming to Doing 2017

From Dreaming to Doing. 

You know, that’s a perfect theme for a children’s book writing and illustrating conference. Writing and illustrating DOES begin with a dream, a passion to create this piece of work that dives into the heart of the reader. To make them FEEL what you are feeling, understand and connect. The doing part is what makes the dream come alive. 

Each panel reminded me that in order to make my dream a reality I must do the work and put myself and my work out there! I had so many notes from the panels that my notebook pages are currently kind of a mess.

Other than the panels, which I will post some of my notes in the near future, I had two extremely helpful and encouraging portfolio critiques from Calef Brown and Alyssa Nassner:

Brown:

  1. Practice varying my line work throughout a piece. Almost all of my images had the same kind line thickness and the idea is to thicken the lines of the objects up close and thin them out further away. Also vary the types of line, like I do a lot of swooping motion and curves. Need to change it up a bit.
  2. DRAW DRAW DRAW! He wanted me to practice drawing the figure and told me to take night classes. Unfortunately I don’t have the money to take night classes, but maybe I could save up or apply for scholarships.
  3. He liked my more detailed pieces, the small intricate details I had with some pieces.
  4. He liked my color, but gave me the idea to try to work with brighter colors.
  5. One of the mixed media pieces he thought wasn’t working due to the two mediums fighting for attention.

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     this is the piece with the two fighting mediums.

  6. . He said in some pieces I seemed hesitant. Fix that.
  7. And last he told me to work on INDIVIDUAL pieces instead of stories. And focus only on illustrating instead of writing.

Nassner:

  1. I got the same advice on varying line work.
  2. Bring more narrative into my pieces, though she thought I was good with the narrative with my last three images.
  3. Liked my color.
  4. Suggested that I look into illustrating for middle grade too. She made this suggestion when she saw the black and white piece show above.
  5. Work on drawing.
  6. With the mixed media pieces, some were too muddy. Fix that.
  7. Told me to get a domain name and website  (or URL) and basically said I was silly for not having one lol.
  8. She liked my digital pieces much more than the mixed media.

Both critiques told me I was not quite professional enough, however I was CLOSE. Both told me that my compositions are good, my light, color, and drawing are pretty good, I just need to get to that next level of professionalism and tighten up the craft. Both thought my style was consistent even with the two ways of working, which is GREAT.

Both liked the piece below the most.

 

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It was a great idea to have two critiques. I plan on going to the next conference!

I Had to Pick from a Hat

Does anyone ever have that problem where you have a lot of ideas but don’t know which ones are good or worthwhile?

I’ve been having that problem for about five months now…and it’s really slowed down my work! What to do?

So I wrote the ideas down on little pieces of paper, threw em in a hat, and picked. Yup, let fate decide!

Fate decided that The Hungry Witch Mabel was the one to work on. I already had character designs, a manuscript, and colored pieces as a separate portfolio builder project…I just need the dummy.

I probably should’ve been editing this one all along.

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So What’s Next?

I completed the Stitching Butterflies dummy and sent it to the LB Emerging Artist contest woot! (even though  I learned that I sent in a page out of order…whoops…well at least I completed the dummy lol, NEVER SEND IN THINGS LAST MINUTE Y’ALL)

So what’s next?

Well I completed these for my portfolio inspired by one of my manuscripts, The Hungry Witch Mabel.  

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