For the last 6-weeks I’ve watched the flowers in my garden sit, sprout, and millimeter by millimeter, grow. If you came over and saw these plants you’d be less than impressed, because 6-weeks later they’re still tiny little guys with too much potential sitting inside of them.
That’s the thing with nature, it takes time.
When we look to nature as an example of how to live we notice that it’s about going slow. Rising up in our own beauty without perfection. Offering whatever we have to the spot we’re in right now. And giving back to those around us whenever we can.
Our gardens have a lot to teach us.
I’m excited to share with you the project that I’ve been slowly working on for 2-years. That’s 730 days of slow growth, frustrations, possibly even a few mental breakdowns along the way. But here we are, at the end of the journey harvesting all the hard work and energy that’s gone into a project that has become so close to my heart.
Leila’s Glasses was a book written by my mother, Annie Hutt, after having a dream about this very story.
When my niece Leila had to get glasses, my sister was worried about her feeling different than everyone else. Being adopted and now having glasses there was a fear of her feeling “other” and so my mother and I decided to create something (in secret) that would remind her of how beautiful she is but more importantly how loved she is for exactly who she is.
Out of that dream came this children’s book.
The first for both me and mother. It was a project that had me at wits end a few times but also showed me so much about myself and my own beauty. The process of writing, editing, planning, laying out thumbnails, painting 40 images by hand, editing those images digitally, and then laying it out in book format what a huge learning curve and an insane amount of work. Easily 100 hours was spent on the artwork alone (not including panic attacks held between paintings and the phone calls of fear about this book not coming together).
For two years this was the main point of conversation between me and my mother. It’s what filled my thoughts daily. And pushed me to become a new kind of artist. To embrace my love for illustration and to tell stories in a new kind of way.
While there are many things about the illustrations I would change, add, update, overall I’m thrilled with how this book, my first book, has turned out. Imperfect in so many ways, and yet exactly what it was supposed to be.
The good things take time.
Remember that the next time you’re rushing to the finish line. If nature has anything to offer us it’s that slow and steady always wins the race and allows us to enjoy the journey and every small millimeter of growth at a time. It’s what our social media influenced lives are so often missing–the chance to see the magic in the everyday.
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