Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Looking Back on 2013

I woke up this morning and all of a sudden I realized that 2013 was gone! What happened? It seemed to just fly right by without slowing down and now it's onto another year. Hopefully this one will take it's time and linger awhile because I have some big dreams for 2014!

As fast as 2013 came and went, there was a lot that happened and I am so thankful for and didn't expect. There was growth and new experiences, as well as a lot of waiting and hoping and trying and failing. Next post will be looking forward to 2014 and all the goals and dreams I have. For now, here are some of the highlights from 2013:

  • I started my journey to learn how to write, in addition to illustrating children's books. I absolutely still have a long way to go but I did write 2 picture books, one of which I made into a full dummy. I admit that writing isn't my first love and it's more of a struggle than something I find pleasure in, but it is something that I want to get good at and eventually be able to communicate effectively and artistically. I made Zulu into a full dummy and was able to get some professional feedback from editors, which was also a first. I've never had my writing critiqued. A great learning experience! I also used Zulu to submit to agents. No bites yet, but my search will continue. I'm not ready to give up yet!!

  • I had the opportunity once again to have a solo art show at Cal State Fullerton thanks to the Art-4-Health team at the school. It is a lot of work putting together a whole show, but you end with such a sense of accomplishment seeing all your work hanging on the walls. It puts into perspective how much work I have completed. AND I sold 4 original artworks! 

  • I finished a project that was 2 years in the making and is now available online! Dimplemeyer's Design was started in 2011 and the very gracious and patient author, Al Weiss, was so kind to let me take some extended breaks from the project whenever something pressing came up...and there were quite a few things. But it is finally done and I think it is a quality book that I am proud to have my name on.

  • I was surprised to find that Vulture Verses was awarded the PubWest Design Silver Award for Children's/Young Adult—Illustrated Book! 

  • I finished illustrating Kobee Manatee, an educational book by Robert Scott Thayer. The book has already accomplished quite a bit of attention and was even a finalist in the 2013 USA Best Book Awards - Education Category!

  • I attended the huge SCBWI Summer Conference in August. This is always a huge event and a time of much growth and inspiration. I got to have my portfolio critiqued by an Art Director and come away with some big goals and lots to work on. Read more about my experience at the conference here. One of the things I decided to work on was focusing on drawing more children and even venturing into the middle grade genre. This will be an ongoing goal.

  • I had my first experience being a panelist on a Children's Book Panel at Cal State Fullerton along with 4 other fantastic illustrators! I had such a great time at this event!
    From Left to Right:
          Wendy Grieb :
          Jennifer Wood :
          Jennifer Gray Olson :
          Lauren Gallegos : 
          Rodolfo Montalvo :

  • I also got to work with on a Early Reader project called Stone Soup. It was a great experience and I would be very glad to work with them again.

No comments: