Saturday, September 14, 2013

With all of the illnesses that have taken over our family of late, we have been hybernating at home for what feels like an eternity! This has lead to me spending a little more time than usual perusing the internet and ordering lots of lovely goodies online!

I have been searching for some dresses for Jade for quite a while and have been quite disappointed by most of the new season offerings. Then I stumbled on the Zulily website that is full of some great one-off deals and specials for Mums, Babies and Kids, and managed to catch the end of the sale for these lovely Trish Scully Dresses.

I can't wait for them to arrive - along with some warmer weather too!!

As for me, well I have been trying to banish boring black and grey from my wardrobe for some time, (with little success), until I found the MIX website. It's just bursting with great coloured clothing for all ages! Here's my selection:

Best of all are the great prices! Would you believe it's a Coles Supermarket brand?! I was nervous about ordering on line without seeing the quality, but everything has arrived and I am really happy with it! Now wondering what other great colours I can add to my wardrobe!

Bring on Spring!

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Sometimes you just have to ask yourself WHY?!

I wrote the previous post a couple of weeks ago, but never got around to posting it until today. Our run of Doctor and hospital visits has continued as Zoe developed Chicken Pox within the week of getting out of hospital, and Jade has ended up with some stitches in her head following a nasty fall! All four of us are also still recovering from that nasty virus we picked up a few weeks ago! I have never known such a stubborn virus in my life and everyone is still coughing like an old man with emphysema.

I have had to let a few things slide lately (like the housework!) just to get through the days. We seem to have been hybernating at home for the past month and have enjoyed getting back to the simple pleasures in life, like making mud pies in the garden:

Amidst all the turmoil and sleepless nights I can't stop thinking about starting the Lilla Rogers course in October. I am so excited about it.

Lilla has already sent out some information and notes in preparation for the commencement of the course and I get a little thrill of butterflies in my stomach just thinking about it. Interestingly, one of the documents asked us to write some notes on WHY were taking the course. Funnily enough I found this one difficult to give a straight answer on. Why AM I doing the course? I am certainly not looking to take on more work.....I have pondered the question quite a bit since then, before finally realising that for me it's about self improvement.

Before I had kids I worked as a Children’s Product Designer in several industries including, Toys, Apparel and Bedding & Manchester. As an in-house artist I was always encouraged to explore many different styles, often to create the feeling that it was more than just one artist turning out the designs. Sometimes there was a team, sometimes it was just me. While the brands I worked on needed a certain ‘look’ and ‘feel’ that helped identify the brand in the market place, it was important that this look was not based on an individual artists style - because if that artist moved on then where would that leave the brand? When we looked to employ new designers we needed to know that they could work in a variety of styles to suit our brands.

Now as a freelancer, I am finding things are just the opposite! I AM THE BRAND. My work needs to be clearly identifiable as mine in the market place. If I think about some of my favourite illustrators and designers, I can identify their work right away. If you think about all of the artists represented by Lilla Rogers, I bet you can pick their work a mile off.

While I think I do have a certain look and style, I don’t feel that I am necessarily marketing it very well. I hope that by taking the Lilla Rogers ‘Make Art That Sells’ it will help me create a more professional web presence, strengthen my skills, and develop my style.

Following the course, I plan to revamp this blog (that has remained virtually unchanged since I started it 6 years ago!) and to finally create a website that will better represent my work.

Hhhhhmmmm, not asking much am I? Can a course truly do all this? I don’t honestly know but I have read such wonderful things about the course that I have complete faith that only good things can come from it. 

I’d love to hear from anyone else who might have signed up. What are your reasons for doing the course? What do you hope to get out of it? Are you as excited about it as me?

Back to school

It appears that I may have over committed myself AGAIN this year. I have started on an exciting new full-colour picture book project this week, while also working on the Ella & Olivia series, and have also been asked to squeeze in some more readers for this series.

As if that was not enough, I have signed up for the "Make art that sells" on-line course that starts in October!

I am so excited about the course. I have been thinking about it for a while and have been following the blogs of some of my favourite illustrators who recently completed the course. I can't wait to brush up on my skills and to connect with a new network of like-minded people. It's going to be a crazy around here in the coming months, but maybe it's just our new kind of 'normal' these days!