Yesterday I had the absolute joy of experimenting and getting to grips with photoshop. I was motivated to reproduce a pop-up piece I did for The 52 Week Illustration Challenge last year. It came together surprisingly quickly.
Last year I illustrated a book named ‘A Secret Safe to Tell’. I must admit it was a confronting a difficult book to illustrate but it felt like the right thing to do. Since the book was published earlier this year I have had the pleasure of getting to know the author and now consider her a good friend. She and her husband have worked tirelessly to promote the book and its message. It aims to encourage children who are victims of abuse to speak out and find some one they trust. The books words and illustrations are not scary or inaccessible to children in any way. In my experience it allows children to talk about important questions and issues freely.
I have been continually amazed at how much Naomi Hunter (the author) has promoted the book through radio and press interviews. We are all very excited that she has been interviewed by the current affairs program ‘The Project’. It will be aired on Channel 10 Thursday 9th October at 6.30pm.
Whenever you read or listen to advise from wise old artists and designers who have ‘made it’, top of the list is “Know what you’re worth”. That is; don’t sell yourself down, quote what you think your work is worth and never ever ever work for nothing. I totally agree with this to some point. When I did my second paid job as an illustrator I was sold the ‘big opportunity’ line and I did the job for peanuts. It was a physically painful experience. The client was rude and pushy and the project was ludicrous. So I learnt from that experience. However, lately I’ve found myself in the position of having a couple of long deadlines. It’s probably a good thing as I can really get into experimenting with different styles to get the next books just right. But, I’m finding myself watching the in-box a bit. I like having deadlines that are screaming at me to be finished.
A while ago a dear friend spoke to me about the possibility of doing some work for a book she’s writing. It’s a project I think is really worthwhile but the budget is uncertain. Now I have a bit of time to fiddle about with some ideas I am finding it really liberating. I’m enjoying the creative freedom but I’m approaching it in the same professional way I do with any project because it’s important to me to do a good job for my friend.
That said if anyone does write to me out of the blue stating they have a fantastic book that they’d like me to illustrate for nothing because the publishers are bound to accept it straight away! (It happened again this week) I’ll be hitting delete and taking the dogs for a walk on the beach.
Spring has arrived in glorious Melbourne and we’re all feeling very very lucky and happy to live here. So the next pop-up features the family in the garden. My husband just adores spending time in his garden and last weekend he planted a tree that will take about 15 years to grow to maturity.
I am also trying to get my head round completing two big projects. It’s going well but the madness is building and it’s going to take a bit of level-headedness to keep things under control. I can’t complain about being busy doing stuff I just love to bits.
It’s been ages and ages since I wrote but I’ve been busy preparing for The Little Archie’s exhibition at Oak Hill Gallery and drawing my own children for their grandfathers 70th. Hope he likes them. You can try and guess which famous people I’ve tried to paint. Good Luck.