Last year, my freelancing was going great. I finally felt like a real illustrator, y' know? I landed a fabulous agent, started getting regular assignments and felt validated after all the years of paying dues. Yay, I'm working!
And now the illustration market is painfully quiet. At least, it is for me which has made it easy to believe that it was a grand fluke and now it's over. Mope, mope, mope.
This is not to say that I want to give up. Not at all. But getting past that dejected feeling is challenging and I've been thinking a lot about what I need to do to keep going and not go INSANE with doubt.
And the answer is simple, really.
But hope alone is not enough. I've found that I can't just sit and "hope" something good happens. I have to create situations to be HOPEFUL about. I can't be a passive spectator in this, I need to work at it a little.
So how am I doing that?
*I'm working on my own storybook dummies...seriously working on them. Writing manuscripts, having them critiqued, working on them some more, fleshing out the sketches and finishing a piece or two in color.
*I'm taking a writing course. (Anastasia Suen's poetry workshop) I took her Intensive PB workshop a while back and found it invaluable. Not just because of all the "meat and potato" info but also because it gives me a reason to sit down and focus on my writing.
*I'm reading. A lot. (For the class but also for pleasure. Reading good books is very inspiring)
*I'm working on some fresh pieces for my rep. The ol' portfolio never tires of fresh work.
*Sending postcards to past clients, reminding them I'm alive and querying new ones.
Much more productive than moping, I think.
Even though, a few chocolate filled moping days are allowed from time to time. But not too much! It's going to take a heck of a lot more than HOPE to get back into your jeans if you do. Trust me on this, I know.