Pen and ink on paper, 15 1/2″ x 11″

When I first talked to an advisor in college I thought I wanted to be a graphic designer. “No, you want to be an illustrator or fine artist.” I was told. So I majored in illustration with a minor in graphic design, knowing that was were the money was. I’m now a professional graphic designer who is getting older, and hoping to become more focused on fine art. So that advisor…. well … was pretty good. My teacher, Dave Christiana. Who I, by the way, I had a crush on (doesn’t everyone have a crush on their teacher?). Today he is married to a beautiful woman and still teaching in Tucson, and he illustrates (very successfully) children’s books. His passion? Oil painting. Enough said. Be realistic. Talent isn’t the only part to the equation. Hard work comes into the mix, and confidence.

This castle illustration was the very first one I did in college illustration class. I was so nervous on the first critique I almost threw up. I really believed I might not be good enough to be an artist. Can you believe my teacher told me “You don’t have choice. You were born an artist.” I was shocked. I thought you had to EARN it! NO…. you have to be an artist in your heart and then just do the art that your heart tells you to do. The other stuff, graphic design, waiting tables, secretary, whatever it is you do that isn’t art just is what you do to support yourself. Your STILL an artist. Isn’t that cool? So just know that and own it. Shew. Feels good!

So, I did this piece because I’d done poetry all my life and wanted to publish a book with my kids poetry running up to my adult wha-wha sloppy love stuff. This was going to be my cover illustration. Enough said. I think the piece is nice (did the stippling with a magnifying glass!), the poetry was pretty sappy.

Anyway, you won’t see much illustration on this website because I don’t really do much anymore. I’m into fine art as a creative expression, I make my living at designing websites. I’m really blessed. To those just getting started, don’t give up. It’s worth the work.

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