Ways I Manage My Time

thought I’d share some things that I do to keep me organized. I made up titles for each day to keep me focused on what I’m doing each day so that I don’t spend forever online. I make notes of things that I want to post about on each day and try to take 5 minutes each day to post.  I have also made a “chain” of where my posts go to and try to be careful to not post the same thing twice.

#youtubetuesday – If I see interesting videos that I want to view (maybe educational or helpful in some way), then I will send that link to myself in an email with the title “YouTube Tuesday”. Then on that day, I will take the time to watch them.

#writingwednseday – This day, I devote my time to working on a book that I have started and maybe research others that I’m working on.

#technologythursday – My email box gets too full.  SO, I take this day to delete spam, maybe unscubscribe to things I no longer want, save emails to certain files so that they don’t just sit in my mail box and anything else needed.  I also take this day to blog (although, today I’m early.  lol)  I’ve also been reading a book called “Idiot’s Guide to Social Media Marketing”.  On Thursdays, I will look at the notes that I have taken from the book and maybe try to put things that I’ve learned to use.

#focusfriday – I think about the next week and what I need to accomplish.  Review my week and see what I didn’t finish up and why so that the same thing won’t happen the next week.
EVERY DAY at 9AM my phone alarm goes off saying “Draw, Paint & Create” ….  SO, I try to stop doing the above things at 9 AM so that I can  ….  DRAW, PAINT & CREATE.

Hope this has been helpful.


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Digital Sketch

Just a quick post of a digital sketch that I’m working on today. This is my friend Nancy holding her granddaughter, Hadlee.

I’ve always loved paintings by Mary Cassatt …  the mother and child scenes.  From the time that I was very young, I remember always wanting to be a mother with lots of children.  To me there is almost nothing greater than the love a mother has for her child.  At least that’s the way it should be. So many people aren’t lucky enough to have that kind of love from their mother.  Then they say that a grandmother’s love is even greater.  I don’t have grandchildren yet, but I do have two wonderful daughters.

A child is a treasure that unfortunately a lot of people take for granted and sometimes don’t treat them as well as they should.  Both of my daughters work in a field in which, sadly, they see that.  I’ve always cherished my daughters and have tried to give them the best life that I could.  When people look at the drawings that I do of children, my hope is that they see love and that somehow translates to the love that they have for their child.

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Technology Thursday

It’s been a while since I’ve blogged.      2014 held a lot of set backs for me due to some medical issues and other things.

But, I’m back !!!  In the past, I had designated certain days to get certain things accomplished.  It seems to help me keep my mind on track.  I work on these things for a short while in the mornings then paint afterwards.

Before I had MEDIA MONDAY –  This is the day that I dealt with emails (unscubsribe and weeded through them), posted to various social media sites, dealt with anything pertaining to the computer (moved files to the appropriate hard drives … I tend to clutter my desktop BADLY)  My husband was ALWAYS off on Fridays which is why I used Mondays.  2014, his days rotated which did effect my ability to stay on schedule.  This year, he has MONDAYS off which effects my MEDIA MONDAYS …. so, I changed it to TECHNOLOGY THURSDAYS #techthursday.

I have A LOT of great things to accomplish this year and it all starts with a plan.  Organization is key !!!  Stay tuned

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My Visual Mentor class with E.B. Lewis

Today is my skype meeting with E.B. Lewis. I would love for you to check him out. http://eblewis.com/

I met him almost two years ago at a children’s book conference in Austin. We were asked to turn in a piece for the panel to critique in front of everyone. It was an auditorium and the artwork was projected on a HUGE wall. He TORE ME UP. haha. I shook his hand afterwards and told him that I appreciated his honesty and vowed that I would make it better. Fast forward ahead to now. He only accepts a few people to mentor and I am one of them !!!

He is still as honest with me as that day. The meetings aren’t easy at all. BUT, I don’t want someone to just say that my work is good. I’m almost 50 (yep, I said that out loud .. or actually in my head) .. point is that I haven’t gotten to the point that I want to. He has. SO, I owe it to myself to hear whatever he has to say… no matter how blunt or brutal. 

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Visual Mentorship with E.B. Lewis

SO, Friday, I had my weekly meeting with Mr. Earl B. Lewis. I have to say that I was so afraid. haha. I KNEW what he was going to say. It’s PORTRAITS. !! AND I knew that he was going to tell me to throw all of it out (he’d mentioned this already)

I have SCBWI conferences coming up this February and April. He had said before that I may not have anything in the portfolio. AND I do agree with what he says. IF it’s not appropriate for portfolio then it does need to go. BUT, where does that leave me.

I absolutely LOVE my meetings with him and I feel that he is teaching me a lot. That’s not to say that it isn’t hard because it is. I have felt like giving up so many times that I can’t count. It is frustrating but .. he has told me a few times that he believes in me and that he is seeing how hard I am working.

The hardest thing is to get out of my own head. And I don’t know where all this is going to take me. BUT, I always pray over these meetings. That I can back away from myself and truly HEAR what Mr. Lewis has to teach me. And that God uses my work for HIS glory. So, right now all I do is get ready for my meeting to start in a few minutes and “wait upon the Lord”.

So, anyway, the meeting with Mr. Earl B. Lewis went GREAT. I think he and I have developed a nice dialogue. I’m a talker and it’s hard for me to shut up. haha. BUT, I have to remember that I’m paying for HIS time and not to hear myself talk. lol

That said, today I left very hopeful of the goals that I’ve set for myself. His critiques were honest and yes .. tough. BUT, I wouldn’t have it any other way.

The way that I see it is the way that I’ve BEEN doing things hasn’t worked out. haha. His way has worked for him.

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INKtober 2014

I would like to introduce you to INKtober. I started this last year on a whim. Read about it here.http://mrjakeparker.com/inktober

I plan on doing it again this year. Since my daddy died, the fall and October has always been so hard. SO, I have to say that I’m excited to participate in this again. I had started making plans for a lot of these drawings. I started working with the kids in some of these. My plans fell through because of a lot of medical issues. I am hoping that I can get back to those plans and maybe this INKtober can help me do that. I hope that you will both consider joining me in this. You don’t get anything out of it. BUT, you just share your stuff. It’s kinda cool.

You can see a lot of my #inktober drawings from last year on my website.  http://felicialilley.smugmug.com/

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another class with E. B. Lewis

My meetings with Mr. Lewis are always on Fridays.  It is a few days later and I thought I’d tell about it.

When we first started our meetings, he worked with me on watercolor painting. This went on for almost two months.  Summer was crazy due to some medical issues for me and some things with him.  Anyway, we started back up in August.  Before we started back up, I had decided that I wanted him to work with me on a dummy picture book.  We have SCBWI conferences coming up this February and April in Austin and Houston.

My thoughts is that I wanted to work on my book dummy and even my portfolio before the conferences.  He said that we could work on whatever I wanted to because it was my time.  I’m not sure at this point what I will do with the picture book dummy once I’m done.  But, I do think that working on it will be a great experience since we will be going through the entire process.

At this point, we are working on my thumbnails.  Honestly, I didn’t think it would take this long to get through the thumbnail process.  I thought that I’d be painting the pictures by now.  BUT ……. he is truly making me reach into myself and pushing beyond what I thought I was capable of doing.  I have to confess that it is sooo frustrating because I THINK that I’ve done what he wanted from me.  Then to get to our class and it still not be good enough or what he is wanting to see.  Yes, I’ve thought about quitting.  But, then I think about it this way. First of all, he is an award winning published illustrator and I’m not.  Second of all, if I were working with an editor, it would be the same thing.  Tons of changes.  Trying to tell what they are wanting to hear through my illustrations.

This isn’t easy or for the faint of heart.  Mr. Lewis is TOUGH !!!!!!!!!!!!  But, he isn’t trying to be mean.  He is trying to push you into going beyond what you THINK you are capable of.  He has really given me a lot of great things to think about.

I have met a lot of people in my position at conferences who come back to our table after their meetings with the agent or whoever.  They are all upset because their portfolio wasn’t “good enough” for the person that they met with.  They continue defending their portfolio and their illustrations.  Then they speak of how wrong that person was.  I sit there listening to them as they show me their portfolio and think to myself that they really need to listen to that PROFESSIONAL.  There were reasons that they said what they did.

It really is hard to not take things personally about what the professionals do say about your work.  It IS personal to the artist.  But, if you don’t step away from your work and truly listen to what these professionals say then you aren’t doing yourself justice. You really don’t know what more you are capable of, if you stay in your box and don’t try to push BEYOND.

Well, now, I’m going to rework these thumbnails AGAIN.  Yes, I’m feeling weary from reworking things so much and I feel liek I’m NEVER going to be good enough.  I just want to quit !!!  But, I’m not.  I’m going to continue with this because even though he didn’t like what I did.  He did give me encouragement when he said that he has seen how I’ve changed and that he believes in me.

Earl Lewis believes in me !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  SO … shouldn’t I believe in myself too.

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