Even though I was great at dodge ball as a child in American grade school (because I pretended I was dodging bullets in Vietnam ((that is true)), I've never been into competition. Even in Dodge ball I just loved the idea of the game. Winning was second to "its just how you play the game". I took that to heart. Thanks dad!
But it's been an overwhelmingly very fun and healthy experience to be part of art agent extraordinaire Lilla Rogers Make Art That Sells Global Talent Search in which thousands of incredibly talented artists from around the world are competing for Lilla's affection for our work. Three rounds in which we get pared down to 50 after this first one and then pared down to a lucky few in that last round.
Taking Lilla's classes these last 6 months has been a whirlwind of hard work, great play and exponential growth. It is true, that when you truly find the thing that makes your heart sing, don't deny it but leaaaannnn way in. I have loved being in forums with so many artists and have found my champions there. We bounce ideas off each other, talk about art supplies and scanners, and ask for advice when our brains no longer can think. I've watched people grow and Grow and GROW. I've been told I'm doing the same. It's EXTRAORDINARY.
All this to say, I've spent the last 2 glorious weeks creating the cover of a Garden Journal in New Mexico, in the Rio Grande River Valley, on an organic seed farm, in our friend's beautiful hard-working pollinators garden. It's been the ideal place to play with this and watch the shapes of flowers and nature happen at the same time. As the garden grew these last few weeks I feel like I have as well. I drew Japanese anemones and Staghorn Ferns in different shades of "greige" and all the animals that fly and scuttle through the garden. And a beet. Some birds didn/t make the cut. A blue Morpho didn't either and I forgot to add a Big Yellow Swallowtail duking to out with a pair of hummingbird crips. Maybe later today. Anyway, here are some of the iterations of my journal cover. Much of it made it's way into my final entry, above. Ready for some process?
Lilla says, "Be who you are right now in the process" and who I am right now likes to conjure a little something unexpected to keep me going, such as wild boars and another stab at painting a squirrel in the pot on my fire escape eating my narcissus bulbs. Best of luck to all the artists who've entered--seeing your work and how hard you bring your A-Game sustains and inspires me. L'chaim!