Saturday, February 10, 2024

Creative Lab- Illustrators Break Through! Pushing Past Career, Creative, and Mental Blocks

Illustrators Break Through! Pushing Past Career, Creative, and Mental Blocks

W/ Pat Cummings, Cecilia Yung and Christy Ewers

What a great first Creative Lab Session with a fantastic panel! There were so many nuggets that I couldn’t write fast enough! We discussed burnout, branding, style, voice and more! 

Here are some takeaways from the session:

Pat Cummings 

“You have to lose sight of the shore to find new land!”

You just have to show up and do the work. Play—experiment! Don’t get discouraged. Rather take it as an opportunity to invest in yourself and your craft.

Cecilia Yung

“Is it time to change the approach? Upgrade the tools or adjust the goals?”

When experiencing burnout or mental blocks, a great way is to go down a checklist and see if there is anything you can change to help propel you forward in your career. Check off the mental checklist and find actionable goals to help you achieve your potential.
Christy Ewers
“You are the CEO of your career. Immerse yourself! Get a good feel of what’s going on in the market.”

You are an artist but you are also a business. Take action, dive in and immerse yourself in it all. Discover what is out there, where you see yourself, and where you fit in. Be honest with yourself, don’t compare and consider what’s important to you and what YOU are good at!

Pat Cummings 

Pat Cummings is the author/illustrator of over forty books for young readers. She also edited the award-winning series, Talking With Artists, which profiles prominent children's book illustrators. She teaches at Parsons and Pratt, and her children's book illustration class has a growing number of notable illustrator/authors among its graduates. Pat serves on the SCBWI Board of Advisors as well as on the boards of the Authors Guild, the Authors League Fund, The Authors Guild Foundation and as Chair for the Founders Award for the annual Original Art Show at the Society of Illustrators. She is a member of the Writers Guild of America, East. Along with visiting schools, universities, and organizations to speak about children’s books, she conducts a summer Children’s Book Boot Camp that brings writers and illustrators together with agents and top editors and art directors from major publishing houses.

Christy Evers

Owner and agent, Christy Ewers, has been a part of children's literature since her mother started the agency in 1994, and joined as an agent in 2013. With a degree in English and decades of experience in various creative fields, Christy brings a unique perspective to the agency, while maintaining the enthusiasm and love of art that is her mother’s legacy in the industry. She works closely with the entire “family” of artists, spearheading the promotion and deals for CAT Agency illustrators, as well as working alongside the authors in the group to help craft their writing for young readers.

Cecilia Yung 
Art Director, Illustrator

Cecilia Yung is the former Executive Art Director and Vice President at Penguin Random House where she was responsible for illustration and design for two imprints, G. P. Putnam's Sons and Nancy Paulsen Books. Over four decades in the industry, she is fortunate to have worked with some of the major illustrators of children’s books, but the highlight of her work is to discover and develop new talent. She is on the Advisory Council of SCBWI (Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators) as well as a member of its Illustrators Committee.

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