One of my favorite inspirational book authors is Patti Digh. I own all of the books she has written so far, and every so often page back through them, enjoying new insights each time. I have known for a number of months that Patti was collecting stories and writing a new book, The Geography of Loss. Those who know me, will understand how much the idea of this book resonates with me (husband’s cancer, death of a son, deaths of numbers of Navajo friends, etc).
I was quite excited a few weeks ago to learn that Patti was asking for blog readers to submit illustrations for possible inclusion in this new book. My first thought was that I am not a professional artist and thus am not “good enough” to participate. My second thought was to sign up as fast as possible!
I was sent two passages from the book-to-be. The assignment was to illustrate whatever part of the passage jumped out at me. I finished up the two illustrations this past weekend. Notification will be given by early December to everyone who will have artwork included in the book, which will be published June 2013. I can’t wait to see if I’m included! (And I’m also greatly looking forward to reading this book when it finally comes out…)
The first passage I was given included word pictures of a broken heart and being thrust into a strange, new, arid landscape while others are still continuing life-as-usual beside the lush river of life.
The second passage talked about any moment possibly being in the last 15 minutes of your life. It included word pictures of looking back to see how much love you have expressed to those around you during your life-time.
I like the second illustration better because it is so much more personal. It was serendipitous that the purples I added to the “universe” background are highlighted by the pinks in the photos. On the other hand, I like the details in the first illustration. Plus it was great fun to see the “waves,” “light reflections” on the river, and the “shoreline” complete with yellow flowers actually turn out looking somewhat like the picture in my mind’s eye!
I will certainly let you know if either or both of these illustrations are chosen to be included in the book. In fact, you will probably hear my shouts of joy all the way around the world wherever you live!!
Update 2013: Neither illustration was chosen for Patti’s book…but both paintings are on display in my house!
Breaking News 2014: I am a book illustrator after all! Read all about it HERE.