It’s a new year! I can’t believe it’s been eight months since I last posted on this blog. Lots of changes!
First of all, I left my job teaching young adults w/learning differences at Minnesota Life College. I miss teaching art, but after eight years, it was time for a change. I am now the Registrar at Minnetonka Center for the Arts! Tons of cool perks at the new gig, foremost being interaction with other artists and teachers, being surrounded by artwork and creativity. This is definitely the environment I want to be in. Plus, free classes. Win!
Secondly, good news on the Tooth Fairy book — After sitting idle for almost a year, the author and publishing organization (Beaver’s Pond Press) are moving forward and sent it to print TODAY! So my second children’s book should come out before summer, and I can’t wait to hold it in my hands and read it to my kiddos!
The tooth fairy book isn’t the only thing that’s been idling. Admittedly, I haven’t been doing much illustrating with the job change and holidays. But I’m back on my syllabus plan, with a concrete list of tasks to complete each week. Thank you to my sister-in-law Tyler for forcing me to illustrate again! She’s working on her own syllabus to become a doula, and we’re meeting once per month to keep each other accountable for our goals. So far, it’s working wonders.
My main goal is to mail out my children’s book dummy for Monstropolis by May, 2017 — But also to drum up juices from my creative well, which has felt rather stagnant. To do this, you’ve gotta look to artists you admire, read, blog, network, and above all, ACTUALLY DRAW!
We’ve been on the syllabus program for about 5 weeks, and so far, I’ve created another Lynda Barry-inspired journal, completed plenty of drawing prompts, spent an entire day creating a comic every hour for each hour I’m awake, completed coloring on a brand new Monstropolis spread (apartments, above) and completely revamped and enhanced the old “mall” spread, updated the Comics portion of my website, attended a webinar on acquiring an agent, and re-enrolled in SVS (the Society for Visual Learning, where I’ll be taking a course on environment design!).
This month, I’m going to pick up The War of Art by Steven Pressfield, attend Picture Book salons, and start working on rough dummy sketches for the rest of my book. WOW! It all sounds overwhelming, but when you have a syllabus, you just take things one bullet point at a time.
Of everything I did in the past month, my absolute favorite was creating one comic per hour for a day. What an awesome experience. It really opened my eyes to what was happening around me, and good practice in breaking your life into “scenes” to recreate later on paper. Check out the comic on my site (click here!) , and stay tuned, because I will definitely be doing this again in February!