Friday, January 27, 2012

Creative problem solving CONTEST

Here's a brain challenge for all you creatives out there. Below you'll find an image that I created for our Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators Illustration CritiqueFest. It was lots of fun to do and I have  a really good sense of how the story is going to go but no idea right now what the "it" is. I came up with trying to see the moon during the day as it has to be something in the sky or up high (I think).

So anyway, the winning prize for "it" is your choice of a 1 hr Skype picture book consultation with me or a high quality print of this piece, or free participation in my Hero's Art Journey e-course starting March 5th. This course, which features interviews with and inspiration from award-winning children's book people Yuyi Morales, Magaly Morales, Jim Averbeck, Elisa Kleven, Ashley Wolff, Hugh D"Andrade, Maya Gonzalez, Francisco Alarcón, Lissa Rovetch, and a ton of other amazing picture book people and fine artists and even a couple of agents is a life changing fun and empowering creative adventure for very beginning to experienced artists, kids book people, teachers, therapists and adventurers and has received wonderful responses from everyone who has taken it. You'll get to "draw" out and make peace or slay your inner critical monsters, create your own Victorian silhouette tree of life, access your inner goddess, and much more. Do visit the website to find out for yourself.

To win, all you need to do is come up with that special what "it" might be - be as wild as you like - post it in the comments, and link this blogpost to your blog or social media and sign up for my fun infrequent newsletter (if you're in Northern California use this link and if you are anywhere else in the world use this link (you'll also get some litle giftees for signing up).

Be as brilliant, clever, soulful, funny as you can - but no pressure : ) Results will go out via newsletter or here (or maybe both). Good luck and turn off that critical inner voice monster : )

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Great Inspirational Opprtunity for Children's Picture Book People

From the awesome Sharon Levin who does sooo many good thngs

Hey all!

Yes, it's getting to be that time of year again.  Please do help me spread the word.  It's going to be my last year affiliated with the festival (10 years is a good run, but my 'baby' will be in 10th grade next year, the eldest will be in college and it's time for me to move on), so I'm hoping for a HUGE turnout.

Thanks gang!!!!


WHEN:  Saturday, February 4th, 2012, 10 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.

WHERE:  Orion Elementary School, 815 Allerton Street, Redwood City

WHY:    A unique and FREE opportunity to hear presentations by a wide range of children's authors and illustrators.  The lineup includes Jennifer Holm, 3 time Newbery Honor Winner as well as the author of the best selling Babymouse series.  Also presenting,  Elisa Kleven, Bruce Hale, Deborah Underwood, Teri Sloat, Thacher Hurd (not just a wonderful author/illustrator in his own right, but the son of Clement Hurd - illustrator of Goodnight, Moon), Shirin Bridges and our own amazingly talented Orion Parent - Elizabeth Gomez.

We have been doing this Festival for ten years.  It was started by a parent and the school librarian.  The main purpose was to have children meet the people who create the books that they love. We wanted to help break down the barriers between reader and author.   The festival has been and will always be free - we never want cost to be an issue for those who want to meet these amazing people.

Each classroom adopts an author or illustrator and studies her/his work in depth.  They then create beautiful banners based on their person's art.  Every child in grade 2 and above may serve as a docent to the author(s) of their choice.  It truly is a school wide event and Orion's gift to the greater Bay Area community.

Thank you for your time.

More information on the Festival lineup below:
Elisa Kleven
Thacher Hurd
Deborah Underwood
Elizabeth Gomez
Teri Sloat
Shirin Bridges
Bruce Hale
Jenny Holm

From me - And just to kvell a little (kind of means boast but it's more like sing or trill - OK I looked it up - "beam with pride and pleasure") New York Times best selling author Deborah Underwood is a former student from one of my kids' book courses, Elisa Kleven and Elizabeth Gomez are both good friends featured in my Hero's Art Journey e-course (next one starts March 6th) and I know and love Teri Sloat. They are all fabulous speakers and gifted creators. Makes me feel mighty lucky!!!!

Lessons learned in 2011 from A-Z

Art heals the heart and makes the soul sing
Car accidents are awful – leave earlier, drive slower. Also, courage comes in many forms.
Dental surgery sucks – brush and floss really well
Everything creative is not necessarily great (but most things are)
Finding out what's true for me changes with time but the essence of who I am remains the same
Goodness begets goodness
Help (asking for it) can be a really good thing and gets easier with time - helping others, even better
Independence is also good
Just do it and trust that it will be OK regardless of expectations
Kangaroos are not the only things that hop all over the place
Learning is its own reward (so is loving)
Marriage has its ups and downs (tho mostly ups).
Never give up on something you believe in (and if you lose faith, act as if)
Old people have often learned what’s really important (love)
Practice kindness to yourself and others (self part isn’t always easy)
Question what’s really important
Realize that this is it – “your one precious life” and try to live it with integrity
Seek out like-minded souls to grow with
Understand that life leads from one mystery to another
Very often we think we’re going one place when we’re really going another
What matters most is taking the journey with heart
eXtraordinary things happen when you take risks
Yellows like Quinacridone Gold can look light golden light
Zesty energy comes from eating well (no flour or sugar), being creative, and loving well

Wishing all of us a magical and transformational 2012 full of unicorns and rainbows and other fabulous miracles

Here’s a wonderful link to the symbolic meanings of unicorns