For the Greater Good: Tithing My Time as a Metaphysical Teacher

For the Greater Good: Tithing My Time as a Metaphysical Teacher

For those who aren’t aware: this summer, I am going to be involved in a start-up two week metaphysical children’s program in June and July.

I recently found out, as in the case of most start-ups, that there is no guarantee of payment.

As I have loans to pay and an independent lifestyle to save up for. I had thought of backing out, but it seems the universe has other plans for me.

Naturally, I had hoped for a salary, but what I got instead was a sign.

Last Sunday, something happened at Unity Church for Practical Spirituality, where every other Sunday, I teach meditation, affirmations, object-lessons and crafts to whoever shows up.

Last Sunday, I was unable to do my job, due to not having a way to get to church. My Mom hurt her back, my Dad had stuff to do and my ride fell through. (I don’t have my license, but working towards it!) I am extremely dedicated to my job and I can count on one hand how many times I have missed a day. I am one of only two teachers.

I resigned myself to the idea that I wasn’t supposed to be there that day, and in all honesty, I was pre-occupied with deliberating whether I was going to do the children’s program or not.

A few hours later, after church had ended, we received a call from the church. One of the members of the conjuration told us that two children had shown up.

“It was amazing!” she said, “(the older child) taught (the younger child) and they made a craft together. They meditated on their own and wrote a poem about the seasons. Everyone had tears in their eyes..”

Suddenly, I knew I was just where I needed to be. If I could create that at Unity, clearly, there is something that I am meant to spread in my local community. My mind was made up.

Therefore, in the spirit of practicing what I preach, I acknowledge that God is the source of my supply. I will tithe my time at the Center for Aligned Healing, for the greater good, whatever that may be.

And so it is!

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Author/illustrators and Shades of Grey: making a ‘book dummy’ for your big project

Author/illustrators and Shades of Grey: making a 'book dummy' for your big project

So after planning and conceptualizing and researching what I actually have to do to submit Luminè as an author/illustrator, I finally have discovered what I actually have to do to get this thing off the ground: I have to do what picture book illustrators do when trying to get their work published; make a ‘book dummy’.

What the heck is that? Basically, it’s a rough layout of the book, with text and images together. Sounds like a no-brainer? Not really. Read on.

In the case of a picture book for wee ones, it would be necessary to do the whole book. However: this is where I diverge. Luminè is a Middle-Grade reader, or MG for short. It has many many pictures and lots of text. Therefore, it would be unreasonable to expect a whole book, since the agent or art director wouldn’t really need or have time to look at the whole thing.

Therefore, in the case of my book, my submissions package would contain a polished ‘chapter 1’ with text images and appropriate typesetting to show those who see my work that my work looks good in print and alongside text. That is important too.

Since I wouldn’t be illustrating the whole book (yet, of course, but I won’t stop working while shopping the book around!) I would also include character concepts and studies. This way, the agent or art director could see that I could draw a variety of characters and had a consistent style. For my book, it would be necessary to showcase some of the more stylish and bizarre heroes and villains. These I have been working on and have already.

The sketch above is officially a teaser WIP of the wrap illustration for chapter 1. It’s really happening guys.

Throughout this process, I may only be able to show you glimpses of what I am working on, but I will still update the Tumblr lots to keep me sketching and keep my social presence active!

When working on big projects, it is important to keep sketching, so you keep the ideas flowing and your work improving. It can be really easy to fall into a pattern of only ‘drawing for final’. Not all of my sketches are spot-on in terms of anatomy or proportion. That’s fine! Some days, I feel more inclined to create a mood, while other days I seek to nail a pose.

I really forced myself to press on today. I was having one of those troublesome wacky days full of other non-art related conflicts and didn’t feel like drawing.

So I told myself: ‘If I start the book today and get this picture right, I’ll feel really good because I would have made today a great one instead of a bad one.’
I cracked open the anatomy books, got some reference and got started.
I’m pleased so far, and excited to draw the rest of Lena’s messy room.

I hope this helps clear up confusion for those people who really want to draw and write as well.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I’ve got a world to make…

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