While my first Heart of It e-course officially ended back in May, that was by no means the end of the experience! Over twenty artistauthors decided to contribute to our first ever Heart of It collection children’s book. (The “official” title is yet to be decided.) Since the end of class I’ve been guiding them through the publishing process from manuscript all the way to final art, giving them a small taste of just what it takes to create a book. And right now we’re about to go into final art…..so exciting!!!
Throughout the process I’ve taken on the role of editor and art director, taking into consideration the overall book and how each submission served the bigger picture…while trying to be present with the heart of each piece. Matthew, my partner(-in-revolution), takes care of the logistical things such as laying thumbnails and drawings into the book file to make sure artists are leaving enough room for their text and other nitty gritty specifics like bleed, trim and safety. He also provides all the fancy templates and helpful samples to assist students in navigating the process. The book will be published by the independent press Matthew and I co-founded, Reflection Press.
My sincere intent throughout the entire process is to ‘see the heart’ in each artistauthor’s words and art and to support them in bringing that out more and clearer. As the editor, I’m not picking and choosing who to put into the collection, I’m trusting that everyone has a story to tell. This is a very unique experience. I want to provide a real life publishing framework, but with heart. The majority of the artistauthors are new to the process so we learn as we go, but I always lead with the heart and the desire to support and empower people in honing their craft of creating beautiful and meaningful children’s books. Many people have been surprised by their innate ability to create both image AND word, even ones who previously thought of themselves as only writers or only artists.
Our stories and our art belong in our lives and in our world! Now is the time to reclaim our creative heritage: a heritage that gives us expression and voice. To do so with an eye on inclusion, heart and nature is REVOLUTIONARY! This is what we want for ourselves and our children. Working on this book is an amazing experience for my heart. I am grateful to this gathering of artistauthors for playing with me! They are doing some profound work, inside and outside at the same time. I know this book is going to be a valuable step on the path to a world of greater equality and insight for our children.
everyone is an artist.
this is the revolution.
If you’d like to see a little behind-the-scenes, one artistauthor has been blogging about her experience with the process on her website. You can also learn the story behind my desire to create these books in my “time to return to storytellers and artists” post. And if you’d like to join me for the next Heart of It course (and be part of the 2nd book in the series!) view the course page for more details. Let’s create a children’s book revolution straight from the heart! #kidsbookrevolution #wayofthebook