wise trees book

When you get a BIG IDEA…

GO FOR IT.  I know, I’ve always known when an idea is the right one. The problem is that resistance shows up and it has for a long time…too long. There came a point when I just couldn’t listen anymore. There comes a time in everyone’s life when you can’t accept another come back tomorrow.

Yeah that line was from a frantic mother looking for her stolen child. She has a big idea on where she is and who took her. Yet the world thinks she’s crazy. Does she do what I’ve been dong for far too long. I laugh, because she didn’t. SHE WAS RIGHT. 

Sure, this was a lifetime movie but it’s a true story, about a real family, a real mother who rose above the naysayers. 

So I went from I refuse to throw out another piece of paper to publishing my first ebook. I am  almost done with the second book. I caught myself analyzing detail after detail, There’s going to be no more of that. 

I mean yeah I want to produce the best I can but I can’t go over and OVER the details too long that I forget what I am doing or why. I feel like I keep writing the same ideas and words. Maybe I am ? Maybe I need to keep telling myself this and writing…WHICH IS PROOF I CAN’T TAKE IT ANYMORE.  I must change. I am 

I want to share my ideas about love and curiosity.  I believe my books will do just that. People will be quick to say your book doesn’t matter.  A big publishing company didn’t publish it.  I  say I achieved my goal. It feels great and I have so many more projects to work on. That makes me feel free!

Ellie shows us that togetherness is the best magic. She teaches us what it means to be an artist. Wise Trees teaches the importance of listening to ideas as they ring. 

-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

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

 

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

Practice to find style

I came to an important realization. I’m not an illustrator. I’m not a hand letterer. I do love to paint letters like these

hand lettering

and doodle letters like this.

happy days

I live for drawing moments like these. I had no idea what I’d paint, draw or doodle until I did. I totally get why its important to get 10,000 tries down.

I love making books. I express them with obsession of color and nature. I keep thinking about my book and how I illustrated it. I just painted trees. It was easy. OK, I had to repaint and repaint and repaint trees but that was part of the process.

title page

 

Wait, how do I display my name on my books? Silly details. Why am I thinking about all this? That’s all I’ve been thinking about this week. I did some research on blogging and branding. Words like honesty, emotions and connections clearly stand out. So I took a picture. I felt weird trying to take a selfie. It’s just not something I do but I can post about art forever. I’ve found my lace.

-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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watercolor and tempera

A star is born…

ideasgl

 

the words you have talent…everybody has talent…what are you going to say…how are you going to say it…

What ever you say, say it with everything you got…WITH YOU

this movie hit me hard…made me FEEL what it truly means to be an artist. Everybody has a story…a voice but not everybody can find the courage to just be. You don’t need fancy costumes or lights or dancers…just sing SING THE SONG…

yeah that’s where I’m at right now.

 

thoughts are things

create your heart out

Love grows

Ughh…this week was hard.  I spent most of my time cleaning up the files for my wise trees book. I am tired of looking at my laptop screen. It feels like I am neglecting my art.

I am so glad last week happened. I set out to work on my work in progress folder and all these ideas begged to be painted. The best part is I am listening.

This is an old sketch. I finally painted …

 

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I’ve been adding new art to my shop. The fact is I don’t care who likes it or not. All I feel is this sense to continue sharing my work.

painated pink and purple flours

Maybe its baby steps toward my biggest project yet. I’m scared. Deep breaths.  I’m excited! I long for summer days when I work on art all day or night. No matter where life takes me, I must always create.

I painted and painted this balloon. I  kept messing up. Each time I vowed to make it work. I painted over and over again and then this happened. Not bad thanks to a little help from an eraser tool. This balloon sums up my art and every moment that led to my wise trees book. I can’t believe my book is almost here.

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I am now working on a new book. Her name is Elfie and she wants to build the biggest bestest tree in the world. She’s cute and my deadline is this holiday season. I can do it because …

there are no impossibilites.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

wise trees book

On writing a book

tree with heart leaves

 

Seriously writing a book is hard. I love the painting. The stories practically write themeselves. BUT it’s the editing mind games that twist you up. Do I keep this? Who are these characters? What’s the message? Will I make the kids smile? Bartholomew makes me smile?

At some point I began writing because this story was filled with lessons I need to read, lessons I need to live.

Ana and Geogre Book Ending

What a lesson to learn from. Some dogs want to fly. Some foxes want to sing. Some bears want to paint. Some rabbits rather grow strawberries. Why not. For when you explore and listen to the voice that tells you the truth, you discover there’s a world of wow-a world of no impossibilities.

 

I have two books written. What I love most about these book projects is that I am learning to let lose and just create. I am learning to listen to curiosity.