As an illustrator we are presented with a wide range of opportunities to work with others in a wide variety of direction and purpose. Usually I am creating a piece for someone who has not had work done or needs new material to fill their visual profile. But with Saving Mim I was asked to totally redo a book cover because the old one was failing to draw attention in a positive way. In fact the old one was placed on a “worst fantasy book cover” blog, seriously hurting the clients ability to make sales. This added a lot of pressure to perform, not only did I have to create a strong work to promote the book but it also had to undo the setbacks the previous piece did for the novel. On top of that, the creator of the book wanted to have the piece reviewed by a series of professional cover critiques. Of course I stand by my work no matter what, but it has been such a long time since my work was put up to a serious critique on that level. But it was a huge success and it reminded me of how important we illustrators are to those we work with. It is not just our own livelihood that we put into our work but very often it is the livelihood of others as well. I don’t know if their is any other business in the world where this is done in such an intimate level, like that special relationship between the artist and client. We depend on each other and need each other to succeed, and that is a beautiful thing. Here I thought I might feel lonely spending so many hours alone in my studio painting. But the reality is, I have made so many strong connections with clients and their work that I would not trade what I do for anything in the world. I just want to thank all those who put their faith in me time and time again and I look forward to any who I might get to connect with in the future. What a beautiful thing creative work can be.