While I was working in Berlin a few months ago, I received a pretty exciting custom order. It came through in the middle of the night and I awoke to the request. When I read it, I was so excited, for a few reasons. It was my first order to Japan. Plus, the request wasn’t for the usual pet dog or cat, but instead for a pet rabbit. And finally the background was to include hearts, a stretch from my normal geometric patterns.
After getting over the giddiness of realizing that one of my pet portraits would hang in a hallway or bedroom across the world in Japan, I started brainstorming about the heart background. It’s very important for me to keep GoodAfternoonan’s items cohesive. I work to refine my drawings to fit a particular look. I knew that keeping that look and including hearts in a background was going to be difficult. I also knew there was a way so I got to work, sketching out ideas. Custom requests always keep me motivated by stretching me.
This rabbit is not only one of my favorite compositions, but I absolutely love the heart-patterned background. I’m so incredibly thankful for my customers’ ideas and requests. They always reawaken my love of drawing.
This post is part of my Chasing the Creative Impulse Series, which explores techniques for sustaining creativity in a busy life. I believe that the habit of creativity comes from practice and not just from a compulsive feeling to create. This series outlines ways that I’ve maintained a creative life.