Trying something new

If you’re reading this, you probably know me as a writer, not as an illustrator, but since I was a child art was my first love. I used to look forward to Sunday afternoons reading The Washington Post when my father was done with it, then I’d run off to create my own newspaper complete with satirical articles (before I knew what the word satire was), and of course a comics section, (I was especially into weird humor like The Far Side.)

So when I saw that The Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI) was hosting a daily art challenge for illustrators during the month of October, I decided to participate even though I don’t make a living as an illustrator. Participating in the SCBWI challenge was simultaneously trying something new, and getting back to something I love. Because I was intimidated by digital art-creating methods I wanted to go outside my comfort zone and learn to use a program called Procreate, instead of relying on the traditional art-making methods I’ve always used — and I’m so happy I did!

I didn’t love every piece of art I created during the 31 days of October, but I love some of them and learned from the others. Making art every day for a month was a good reminder of a lesson I once read in the book ART & FEAR by Bayles & Orland: “You make good work by (among other things) making lots of work that isn’t very good…”

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