When I founded my illustration studio in 2007 I contacted two different types of agents looking for a little help starting out on my own: agents specializing in juvenile material and licensing agents. I had great feedback (and a few rejections too) from agents on both sides and eager for the marketing assistance but afraid to take on too much, I signed with the childrens book agent.
A couple of months ago I started to get frustrated by the tidal wave of other children's book illustrators out there and the very pathetic trickle of work that was actually coming my way and started to feel my confidence waver and I started thumbing the wanted ads to see if becoming a Janitor paid decent wages. I started reminiscing about the days when I worked for a Canadian publisher as an illustrator of gift bags, wrapping paper and greeting cards and wondering if maybe I could get back into the licensing world. It was during those gloomy days when, Elaine Citron of Cypress Fine Art Licensing emailing asking how I was and if I was still interested in being represented by a licensing agent. I was blown away that she had remembered me from all those years ago and started working with her as soon as I could. I can't believe the difference, my work must be a more natural fit for licensing - I don't know why I spent all those years chasing the dream of illustrating a childrens book? Not that I've given that up, but I've decided to put my efforts and the little time I can afford to paint (while being a stay-at-home-mom) into something more lucrative and frankly, more rewarding. In the month before signing with her, Elaine has already managed to sell a Halloween image of mine to The Leanin Tree - a fabulous company that thrills me to even type the name of.
I hope you remember the sketches for this snowman series, but it's been pitched by Elaine and already there has been interest for gift bags (I've also worked up a border and typography for some of the bags). All of a sudden, things feel pretty good again. I guess the only thing left to do is draw Santa Claus.