Post first published in my personal newsletter
©2016 Mabelle Photography
As a kid, I was a horrible artist, and realistically who wasn't. I was creative but lacked skill and discipline. After Junior High, I gave up on drawing, I just wasn't good enough.
Years later I took a risk and went to college for graphic design. I had no idea what it was but I was told I could draw, but that it wasn't necessary that I was a great artist. I thought, "I could do that!"
You would think the most important thing I could learn in college is how to do the work. how to draw, how to design and how to take a photo. But I learned something much more important.
The most important thing I learned in college is something I could have never learned on my own. I needed someone else to tell me. My instructor (Sean Thorenson) told me something that changed absolutely everything. He told me I was good at drawing. This may or may not have been true but that wasn't the point. I never thought I was good at anything before. It was like a fire lit under me.
This new found encouragement sent me on a rampage of creativity. I spent hours, days, and years trying my best to make it true. All because an industry expert said a few kind words. whether they were true or false it set me on the path to making it true.
Ellie is the exact same,
Her Zoo is closing, and Ellie wants to help make it the best last day ever. How could she help? She wasn't good at anything (Yet).
She sees the zoo keeper painting a sign and she takes a risk. She paints. To her surprise, the zoo keeper encourages her to continue. this sends Ellie the Elephant on a painting spree that could change the course of the zoo altogether. This book is an amazing story that shows the importance of encouragement and art. I mean we could probably live without art and encouragement, but It's probably like living under communism.
©2016 Mabelle Photography
Let's be honest here, I don't think I have given a fully negative review on art yet. I really need to do that sometime soon But today I can not. This art is amazing for so many reasons. The writer/Illustrator Mike Wu has worked on some of the most epic cartoons of our time. working most of his career with Disney and Pixar, this guys art is as good as it gets.
the characters are designed to be the cutest versions of that animal we can think of. They are also colored with what I assume is water color leaving the art to feel very comfortable and fun.
No matter how much encouragement you think an artist is getting, I am positive another compliment won't go to waist. Instead, it will fuel them.
Encouraging others is one of the most important gifts you can give. This week I'd like to ask you to do something. Tell someone, what they are good at (even if you think they know it). What you get back could be the next thing you fall in love with, or the best damn clean floor you had ever seen, or maybe just a smile back. either way, you encouraged them to work harder and to be better.