I came across the 52 Week Challenge at the beginning of 2015 and it had the perfect mixture of support, structure, inspiration and kindness. Without the weekly prompts, I would still be chewing on my pencil and wondering what to draw and how to draw it. By mid year, I felt a change (most likely sleep deprivation and caffeine addiction) and I knew I could do this. I could actually make a career from doing what I love. I began using my challenge illustrations on greeting cards.
My big break came about when my illustrations caught the eye of Dr Howard Gray, a local author and the Chairman of The Batavia Coast Maritime Heritage Association. The Batavia Coast, where I live, is named after this very famous ship, The Batavia. The absolutely terrifying true tale of the shipwreck and survivors is well worth reading about. I put together 26 maritime illustrations which are now featured on The Mariner's Astrolabe, in the centre of Geraldton, WA. I am hoping to start work on the next historical monument (a massive steel globe) in 2017.
One week after that, I seen another challenge member that I admire greatly, Jolanda Jarman, share a competition that she had entered. Redheads 'Through The Ages' Art Comp. I decided to give up sleeping that week and got my entry in a few days before the deadline. I was in shock when I finally found out the I placed 2nd. The new collector's editions of Redheads Matches, featuring my design, are to be released late this year or early 2017.
So much has happened the past 2 years that I never thought was possible in a whole lifetime. These are just the highlights of those years and I still have my whole life ahead of me. I cannot emphasize enough how important this group has been to me. I have made close friends and I have made a career.
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