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What keeps me going in this difficult and often soul crushing field of children’s books? My critique group!

It started many years ago, strangers, coming together to help propel each other’s work to a higher level. We were delicate with the critisism, but didn’t hold back. We always found something positive in the work and we were always, ALWAYS, respectful of the differences in style. It wasn’t that these people were really trying to be polite, respectful, thoughtful, and accurate, that’s just who they are. Through my critique group, I found my best friends. They are the most wonderful, funny, considerate people and I cherish them. Our e-mails, phone calls, and get togethers are not always art related, but when we do work, it’s extremely valuable. We all have different perspectives, we have different ideas, and what comes out of this hodgepodge of thoughts is amazing. They call me out when I’m being lazy. They find the flaws in my illustration when I think it’s not that obvious. They’re comments and criticisms are always spot on weather it’s positive or negative. They also leave me with a feeling of enthusiasm. Our group is full of positive energy and after a meeting I feel great about what I’m doing and I can’t wait to work more. I feel very lucky to have found my illustrator group. I just wanted to say, “THANKS!”


My critique group, starting from left,

Erik Kuntz (
Gene Brenek (
Mary Sullivan (
and me. Aren’t I lucky? Yep, VERY!

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