Focusing on doing what I love and matching this up with quality paying freelance and/or licensing work is my quest and to this end, getting an agent is a great way to go. But getting an agent can be a tricky thing. You want one who really lets you keep your name on things and promotes you as an individual with an individual style. You want to avoid becoming a cog in someone else’s machine if you can help it. So, I decided to go for getting on the radar of a longtime favorite illustrator and agent, Lilla Rogers. I entered her gts contest [which is really the main way she takes on new illustrators these days] with low expectations. But, omg…I made it through to the semi-finals, one of fifty chosen out of nearly 1000! My confidence soared, I was headed in the right direction. Butterflies flew around my head, Disney style!

number 1 great sloth

number 1 great sloth

But, then I was not chosen as one of the six out of fifty finalists. So, it’s one giant leap forward and ten paces back. I put so much into that competition, that I’m struggling to figure out which direction to go in now. It’s a strange feeling, a failure that doesn’t feel exactly like a failure but more like a disorienting event. At least it’s a failure that I can learn and grow from. After reading the judges feedback on why they made the choices they made, I know now why my sloth did not carry me [a sloth carrying me, that mental image cracks me up] through to the finals. And now, I plan to focus on making expressive characters that tell a story and see where they take me. So, failing can be helpful sometimes. Plus, my six year old daughter made this prize for me which is a pretty big win.