Finishing up a book

I'm stepping away from the desk.

Finishing up the last few paintings of a book is always hard for me. By the time I get to that point, my mind is often on to the next idea and I've lost some of the creative steam I had as I began painting. It kind of happens in every stage actually.

Today I'm the point where I kind of want to be done. Is that a bad thing to admit?

I thought about this and I decided that actually forging ahead, finding that creative spark again and finishing a project is what sets the professionals apart from the wanna-be's. If you're still in that stage where you can't seem to finish a project, don't despair. You can do it. Here are some tips of what I do to FINISH and work as a professional.

1. Take a Break. Sometimes you need to step back and away from the work. You need to do something crazy, fun or simply relax. Sometimes that takes a day, a week or a month. Now as a professional, you often don't have an entire month to set aside a project, so you just have to learn what brings you the most satisfaction and relaxation in the shortest amount of time. Personally, I read a book, go on a date with my husband, or simply shut the door to my studio for a bit so I don't have to look at what's waiting.

2. Put on your favorite music or movie. Play it in the background as you work. You know it well, so it won't distract you completely, but it'll free your mind up enough to not analyze every last move as you finish up.

3. Hire help. Sometimes I can't seem to finish a project if I have too many other things on my "to-do" list. So I have been known to hire a maid to clean my house. It helps me focus on my art instead of the other things demanding my time.

So, I'll go back to being a professional tomorrow. Now it's time to take a break! Enjoy yours!

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I'm a freelance illustrator working in the children's book industry. I love kids and raising my own 4 children. They are the inspiration and the passion behind all I do in art and in life. See my website at

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