wise trees book

E-book is here!

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My book is here. Did I just upload the file and hit submit? Yup. Now I wait, until I receive confirmation that everything is ready for printing and press.  Thank you amazon. Thank you wonderful person.

Funny how the tables turned. Yesterday I felt this nudge in my heart. It yelled, I knew you couldn’t do it. I saw all of the books I am working on. All of the deadlines I committed to and the hope and love poured out on every single page.  I knew I could do it.

I took a break. I had some chocolate, tea and painted for my next book. Oh and I asked for help. Today I came home and in minutes finished my book.

Oh shoot now its on to other projects. I’m scared. I’m excited.

-There are no impossibilities

 

wise trees book

Don’t let resistance win

Oh my goodness resistance almost won today but I am still here. I uploaded the files for my book. I was already to do it. Today is the day.  That’s it, no more holding on to this project. The deadline is TO-DAY. I was nauseous, nervous  and scared. That’s when I new I had to do it.

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I had it all planned out. Copy and pasted my awesome book description. The listing was ready to go. I planned on giving the book away for free. It was my holiday gift to the world .I checked spelling and grammar, read the book out loud. Everything felt good. I got this, I told myself. Then I uploaded the file and previewed the e-book…

in that moment resistance showed up. The formatting was all wrong. I kept fixing it, hours went by and I just couldn’t get it right. I came close to desperately whining. OK I did. I have been working on this book for a year. Well, maybe 8 months. I went back and forth with the editing, the images, layout, font and every single detail. I still need to fix it but I needed a break.

It’s weird because I feel like this feels like a PROJECT. I mean launching something is hard. There’s sweat and tears. I certainly felt that today. If things had gone smooth, I would have just stayed in my comfort zone. I need exactly the opposite to succeed. Right? How many times have I published a book. Never. How many books do I need to publish to now what I’m doing? Who knows but I’ll keep working.

 

-There are no impossibilities

 

thoughts are things

Note to Self

notetoself

wise trees book

Artist vs. Painter

watercolor painted tree with a tire swing

 

 

 

Linchpin is a great book. I’ve always wanted something more than a job. I want to change people by thoughts or emotional appeal. Can my art do this? Or am I simply a painter?

Most artists can’t draw. I’m glad for that one because I admit its true. Yes. I get frustrated trying to draw. Today I sat thinking, what should I draw? I haven’t drawn lately. That is one of my goals BUT why haven’t I drawn? I sat looking around the room, searching books but there was nothing I wanted to draw.

WAIT! I  have been drawing like crazy for my newest book Ellie. Yeah Ellie sounds like a great name for a book. Forget about the title How to Grow A Tree. Ellie it is.

I painted for Wise Trees. I started this whole writing adventure with Ana & Gorge. I moved on to other books so I could learn how to draw. I took a drawing class. Did lots of drawing. Wise Trees and Ellie were passion projects designed to help me improve. Yeah, I have been drawing the whole time.

What do these projects mean to me? Why? I have stories begging to be told. I have to create. I can’t breath without art.

These stories and all of my projects are ways for the reader to play in that wonderful place of imagination, curiosity, and love. If I can create from this place then I’d say that’s awesome art.

Now I’ll go adjust the font color and add my  name to Wise Tress before. I’ll edit one last final time before I set up the file and press send. breath…

there are no impossibilities

thoughts are things

Do it wrong

blog cover

 

I’m so glad I know who Seth Godin is. I want to be a Linchpin. I am a linchpin. A few days ago I was having this conversation, a conversation that I come back to a lot. A father can’t play legos with his son because the father has to build the right way? I did the very same thing creating with the notion of doing it the right way? What’s worse I taught others to do the same. 

I’ve seen teachers insist that students paint a tree with green and brown. That is the “right way to paint a tree” isn’t it? What does the right way mean anyway? I feel terrible about this. Truth be told I didn’t know why I did this. It’s not like I am this controlling person. I’m not. You see at a a young age we are taught to “do it right”. We are taught to color within the lines. That Jesus is white not black. That pink is for boys and blue is for girls.

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The other day I walked in a classroom and I saw all of these cool projects hanging on the wall. They were awesome and the teacher is amazing BUT THEY WERE ALL THE SAME. Oh but the kids who made calaveras, well these were awesome. I couldn’t believe my eyes and my heart when I saw what they made with the mere scraps I gave them. I say scraps because they were scraps from other projects. Sure I gave them my sample and showed them pictures but wow WOW magic happened before my eyes.

The students had and felt complete control. Each was wrong. I was curious and interested as to how and why they chose color and design. I say room 8 taught me a VERY IMPORTANT ART LESSON THAT DAY, a lesson that I think on as I read Linchpin, a lesson that I will probably never forget.

 

I will repaint this today. Should have kept with the first one I made.

 

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Sadly I repainted it several times because I had to do it right. not sure I’ll be able to capture the same magic. The others might look right but there boring. I’ll never make that mistake…

-there are no  impossibilities

 

book projects

Thinking Too Much

mistakesflow

So I am painting all these objects for my next book. It’s funny how I don’t fret about the mistakes I make. I remember the days when I’d get upset, throw it out and start over. I don’t do that anymore.

Something happens to me. I go into a, fix it or make it work mode. Now I paint over my mistakes or use the eraser tool in Affinity Photo. I think of  Jon Contino’s words. You could do tons of revisions but the first one is always the best. It’s so true. I’ll get perfect color, layout or just the overall design feels good. Then perfection takes over. I dip the brush in a wrong color and doubt creeps in along with the ugly splatters that ruined my art.

How many times have I done that? PLENTY, I checked.  I kept painting and repainting trees but then I realized, no I refuse to do this.

 

 

 

 

 

I recognize when I second guess myself. I have deadlines to meet. Oh my goodness I realize that I’ve always looked at mistakes as, what if my art is misunderstood because of a wrong color or maybe I should do this instead of that. But what if my art loses its magic the more I think and think about what I did wrong. 

Yes I gotta let the kid play. She has great ideas. I trust her. Did I just write that? OK I can see why I had to repaint some of the trees. Practice helps me find that sweet balance.

-there are no impossibilities

 

 

 

thoughts are things

I am an illustrator

I’m not an illustrator. I am not a hand letterer. Wait a minute, did I just write that? Yeah I did and its forever on the last page of my journal entry. Something feels wrong about this. I feel limited.

 

So then  I go and listen to an awesome The Nose Knows Podcast. Jon Contino answers the question, when can you call yourself an illustrator. “It’s all in your head he says. You don’t need for someone to tell you, a degree or instagram likes…”

Not exactly his words but yeah that’s what he said. He’s right.

I don’t need a contest on instagram to tell me. For some reason I did look to this contest as a way to prove myself in a sense. I don’t need to do that. It was awesome to be part of this project. It was awesome to share my project.  I am happy for all the winners! I’m happy that I was able to put this poster together. I am growing and working on amazing projects. Yes every now and then it is awesome to have a MOMA artist like my work. I’ll take that.

passion prject poster

 

THERE YOU GO. I am an illustrator. Sure my are isn’t like the cool illustrations in a Curious George book. Nor do they have to be. That’s the point.  I am  an illustrator and a hand letterer. There are different styles and mine IS MY STYLE. I mean its my voice. Lots of people draw letters, with quotes, about life BUT ITS HOW YOU SAY IT. Shouldn’t I be telling  my story? Yes.

All this goes back to the movie A STAR IS BORN and the phrase I learned from a character who when the world shouts impossible she says

 

…there are no impossibilities.  She says it a smile.

watercolor and tempera

Passion Projects

I’ve got tons of them and yet I am painting this poster.

passion prject poster

…which has me thinking about all the books I want to publish. Seems like there’s not enough time to get them all done. Maybe I should start with ebooks? Yes, that seems like a good idea. But I have dreams of holding my book in hand. I loved paining all of those trees. What about giving the ebook away for free? I want readers to imagine and be curious with every turn of the page.

I’ve been thinking about all of the lessons I’ve learned. I’ve learned that I’m not an illustrator. I doodle. I paint. I CREATE. Ok yes I illustrate but I realize my talent is along the lines of, The day the crayons quit or Eric Carle’s collage art. I could do that. Well. not like Carle BUT like ME.

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I long to create  this type of work  everyday of my life. That’s why I painted this poster for #HOMwork. Painting this made me think of all the books I’ve either written or started painting.

passion prject poster

I feel like I just have to share my work. I have days where I paint thoughts that pop in my head.

I have days where I work on books. Winning the scholarship could help me write my books the way I see them in my head.

-there are no impossibilities

watercolor and tempera

Can’t draw right?

I can’t seem to draw Ellie right. I  keep trying and erasing. I guess tonight’s not a good day to draw.   I can’t seem to concentrate. My drawing feels to forced. I keep erasing  and erasing and ERASING…stuck in the same place. Do I draw my characters as I have? For some reason I’m  drawn to this historical vintage feel. I sketched clothes and animals BUT my drawing skills– wish I could just draw.

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It was so much easier to paint trees. Wait …maybe I should take what I’ve learned from my Wise Trees book? Yeah I painted trees with Q-tips and melted crayon. It was awesome!

blue green and yellow round stamped tree

Note to self. Stick to the book deadline. Publish Wise Trees.  Publish Wise Trees. You’ve talked about it.Now walk your talk. Keep writing and creating. Keep making art. It’s all you can  do. Create your art.

–there are no impossibilities

 

 

thoughts are things

6 Posts I need the most…

tight now.

 

Yeah, tbese days I’m close VERY CLOSE TO hitting that button and finalizing my VERY FIRST BOOK.  I’m working on lots of projects and most of them are out there. The world says only show the good stuff. I share mostly everything. The world says paint trends. I paint what I want.  Today I read about a janitor,  a single mom. She wrote a book and it won a prestigious award at a prestigious university, the university  where she worked as a janitor.

I never would have found this article had it not been for Austin Kleon and his KEEP WORKING KEEP PLAYING… newsletter. It just so happens that today  I need to reflect.

 

You gotta make that story!

 

A star is born…

 

BIG MAGIC

believe in your ideas

 

painting a purple tree…

practice helps

 

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