- Drew 1 illustration.
- Wrote 3 blog posts which are currently drafts until I get the photos put into them.
- Made 1 Facebook post.
- Made 3 Instagram posts.
- Published 1 podcast.
- Uploaded more files to my Google Drive so I can sort them. Sorted more of Google Drive & more of my email account.
- Spent a lot of time cleaning in my garage & throwing out stuff that no longer adds value to my life.
- Published 1 YouTube video (Episode 037 of The Ashlee Craft Show).
- Defined & solidified some of my new marketing & money making ideas.
- Wrote 9 poems.
- Worked a lot on my How to Grow Wheatgrass video! I started on it around three months ago & it’s totally time it was done.
- Networked with 1 new person
- Sent blog interview questions to 1 person
- Edited & made images for 36 slideshows that I’ll use in my 101 Ways to Love Yourself Udemy course
- Practiced guitar on three days. I slacked off big time towards the end of the week but I had other things I prioritized higher.
- Bought some more enamel pins for my pin collection from NatelleDrawsStuff, one of my favorite pin designers!
- Figured out more of who I want to be.
- Made list of important ideas to me right now.
- Sent illustration/comic to Campbell’s Soup regarding my idea for them & to get more exposure for my illustrations.
- Decided to pursue illustrating more & make more money from it. Came up with a lot of good marketing ideas to not only become a craftsman at it but also get people interested in them.
- Watched some good movies, made lemon balm tea for the first time from the lemon balm plant on my porch, weighed my pet geckos for the first time (harder than it sounds!).
- Signed up for Fiverr as part of my marketing plan for my illustrations! I still need to get my profile set up, but the first step is done.
- Looked into becoming a vendor & getting my art on products from one of my favorite online stores. I will pick some samples to email them soon!
- Slacked on the exercise big time. Actually, I didn’t do very well with any of the health-related goals. This will DEFINITELY change in the upcoming week & I will get back on track.
- Published my Adorable Farm Animals coloring book on Amazon!
- Finished mixing the song I woke up with in my mind 2+ years ago, so after a few very small tweaks it will be ready to be released!
- Finished mixing my cover of Archer’s Arrows by Crowded House. I’ll be putting it up on YouTube as soon as I make two small adjustments.
- Published 1 YouTube video (The Ashlee Craft Show, Episode 036)
- Almost ready to officially launch one of my owl websites due to the progress I made on it this week.
- Made 7 Instagram posts.
- Spent a LOT of time cleaning & sorting through all the junk in my garage & throwing out stuff that doesn’t resonate with me anymore. Also hung up more clothes in my closet so they’re not just sitting around on the chair in my room.
- Wrote 3,000 words in the current novel I’m working on.
- Edited 51 Udemy slideshows for the course I’m making based on my 101 Ways to Love Yourself book. This is the first round of edits on the slideshows where I’m making all the quote images, doing a little text editing, & fixing some formatting.
- Practiced guitar 6 nights.
- Rode 2 miles on the exercise bike. Walked a total of 7.63 miles on the treadmill. Bought a lot more vegetables & fruits & worked on integrating them into my meals. Sorted most of my pantry & got rid of sugary foods that I don’t ACTUALLY want to eat.
- Published 2 blog posts.
- Figured out where I will be getting the base shorts for my shorts design, which will be the first piece of clothing I’ve designed. This means that soon, I’ll actually have some demo versions ready!
- Drew 2 new designs & 2 illustrations. Got one of my designs I did last year ready to be on posters & t-shirts, so those will be available soon!
- Sent interview questions to 2 more people.
- Read lots of high-level & educational materials, as well as did a variety of marketing things. Bought more craft supplies for my business.
- Wrote 1 poem.
- Published 2 podcasts.
- Read more of The Biology of Belief by Dr. Bruce Lipton & more of Be Obsessed or Be Average by Grant Cardone.
- Doing better on my morning routine. I slacked for a while after the beginning of January was over but now I’ve started consistently writing five goals down each morning after I’ve woken up & meditated. My morning routine still isn’t where I’d like it to be, but it’s definitely better.
- Filmed a ton of video clips for upcoming videos so I’ll be able to finish & publish those videos soon!
- Published 2 YouTube video (Episode 035 of my show, & a poetry book review).
- Finished sorting my Google Drive the first time around. This means everything in there already is sorted, so now I can upload more stuff from my computer & my phone so all my files are sorted appropriately.
- Drew SO MANY THINGS! Created 8 new designs that I can use for posters, t-shirts, & more in my shop.
- Finished the remaining 4 coloring pages for my farm animal coloring book, so now I can publish the book as soon as I scan & edit the images!
- Wrote & sent blog interview questions to two more people.
- Published 3 blog posts, including 1 blog interview.
- Spent multiple hours reading & watching motivational & educational videos. This week was probably the most so far this year that I’ve invested time in personal development.
- Practiced guitar 6 days this week. Looked into an online course about surf-style guitar.
- Made 3 posts on Instagram.
- Wrote 1 poem.
- Actually began making exercise a daily habit. I walked multiple miles on the treadmill & rode a few miles on the exercise bike throughout the week, as well as doing yard work & active chores & doing some walking in the neighborhood. Therefore, I rate myself highly in the exercise category! Also worked on eating olives instead when I feel an urge to passively eat sugar to retrain my habits. I did slack on the veggies, but I’m going to set up my environment for success in this area.
- Finally launched one of the websites I’ve owned for a long time but never did anything with – Life is My Playground (www.lifeismyplayground.com). This also is the kick-off to a website challenge where every week I launch a new site from the variety of domains that I own but have never launched!
- Got serious about my fashion design idea & even wrote a draft version of the email I will send to one of my favorite online stores (that I’d like to carry my design) once I’ve sent them a sample of it.
- Studied Spanish every night this week.
- Did various other promotional things, product research, research on various ideas, etc. Reevaluated what things will actually provide me with the most value.
- Finished editing comic & sent promotional idea to Campbell’s Soup regarding idea I have for them.
- Was happy & felt good all week. I feel like I’m made a lot of progress this past week.
- Devised & actually started doing the morning routine I wanted to do! Admittedly I’ve been slacking in this area ever since about halfway through January. So I came up with a better morning routine & it’s been great so far. I got myself a small notebook & I’ve been writing my top 5 goals every morning when I wake up after I meditate. I also listen to one song in the morning, & I want to incorporate dancing into my morning routine too.
- Went to a reptile expo (Tampa Repticon) for the first time & got three pet Crested Geckos, which are so adorable! I got to see & pet a lot of awesome animals while I was there, but most awesomely I got to HOLD AN OWL. Owls are my favorite animal EVER so I was so excited.
- Finished reading Willpower Doesn’t Work. Started reading The Biology of Belief by Bruce Lipton.
- Did a lot of cleaning & organizing in my house & garage.
- Decided every Friday I’ll do a weekly planning session & set goals for what I’d like to put on next week’s Accountability Update
Tell us a little bit about what you do.
I am working to become an illustrator and I also run a small business on the side primarily focusing on turning my illustrations into different merchandise.
How did you end up starting your online shop? Was there a specific moment that you decided to do this?
I decided that I didn’t want to follow the same career path that I had been doing for the past 5 years, and wanted to focus on my art.
What is your favorite part about the creative work that you do?
Drawing animals and connecting with people!
I see on your website that you’ve lived in New Zealand & now live in Gainesville, FL. What are some of your favorite things about those places? Have they influenced your creative work in any way?
Both places have very unique wildlife, and that has definitely reflected in my illustrations. New Zealand has rolling hills, flightless birds, and no snakes. Gainesville has gorgeous swamps and prairies, and suburban birds of prey, which was completely new to me when we first moved to Gainesville, and still stops me in my tracks when one of them flies overhead, screeching!
A lot of your designs are about animals & nature. What are some of your favorite animals or plants to include in your work, & why? Do your dog & cat influence your art?
I like to highlight animals that may not necessarily be overly popular, such as aardvarks, frilled-neck lizards, and the aye-aye. I also like to share animals that are endemic to places that I have lived in, so I have illustrated a few New Zealand animals, a couple of animals found in Florida, and also Malaysia, the country in which I was born. I definitely also have designed merchandise that are inspired by my cat and dog!
Who are some of your biggest creative inspirations & why?
I draw my inspiration from exploring nature, so I like going on hikes and bush walks, encountering new animals etc. I also love traditional tattoos and Chinese art, and looking through art history books. Currently I follow many different designers on social media, including but not limited to; Phoebe Wahl, Pippa Dyrlaga, Sue Van Gageldonk, Becca Jane Koehler, Victoria Astrom, Lili Arnold, Susanne Suflanda Konig, Yumiko Higuchi, Gunnar Freyr, Bao Pham, Sarah Walsh, and Hilary Jane tattoos.
What do you know now that you wish you knew when you started? What’s your best advice for someone who’s just getting started with doing what you do?
Draw everyday, even if you don’t think it’s a good idea, or if it’s not executed to the standard that you had originally envisioned. Just put it down.
What kinds of things helped you build a customer base when you were first starting out?
Posting on social media frequently, connecting with other designers within the same community.
Do you have a specific process for creating new designs? What are some of your favorite art materials to use in your art?
I usually play around with ideas and poses of different animals, either sketches on paper or drawing directly on my tablet that’s connected to my laptop. I love acrylic and watercolor, and I also love trying out different pens! Once I settle on a design, I clean it up as a vector image and finalize from there.
What’s the best advice you’ve ever received?
Don’t give up.
When you were a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up? Does any apect of it relate to what you do now?
I wanted to be a marine biologist, then I wanted to be a comic artist, and then I wanted to be a translator and travel the world. I’m sort of weirdly in between everything now; I am still connected to animals and nature, I am working towards illustration as a career, and I love to travel when I can (although the translating part has definitely fallen short!!)
What’s your favorite type of product to make & why?
I love designing fabric patterns and sewing; surface pattern design is quite challenging for me because I have to focus on interesting details and subsequently making a pattern that works on a larger scale when repeated across a yard. Having that come together, as well as holding a finished product in my hand after sewing it, are both rewarding.
What has been your biggest challenge or setback, & how did you handle it? How did it help your business more better?
I didn’t have a background in illustration or design, so everything I have learned thus far in terms of the softwares used to create my art has either been self-taught, or from helpful advice from some very important people in my life. I feel like I am constantly playing catch up, while still needing to produce something tangible to keep my business going.
What’s something about you or your creative work that most people don’t know but you wish they did?
I’d like to think that I’m an open book 🙂
The cats you draw are so cute & funny. How do you come up with what they should be doing/wearing in your designs?
Most of the time it’s from seeing something my cat and other cats do something funny first hand, and I put it down on paper (like the pin of the naughty cat swatting at houseplants). Other times, I shamefully follow popular trends like pizzas and cats.
Why do you do what you do? What drives you to be successful/keeps you interested in what you do?
As mentioned above, I wanted to pursue a different career, and I hope that my art will bring a little bit of joy in people’s lives.
What’s your favorite quote, & how does it relate to or inspire you & your approach to your business?
I do not have a favorite quote.
What are some of your biggest goals for the year ahead?
On a personal level; take illustration courses to bolster my knowledge, and explore my art style. I believe art should be constantly evolving. On a business level; expand into different product lines.
What are some of your longer-term goals?
It would be pretty cool to work for/with a museum and non-profit organizations to illustrate for them, but that’s pretty wishful thinking right now. Something hopefully to work towards.
REFLECTIONS IN THE GREEN TRIANGLE BOOK
ALL MY FRIENDS
for such a long time I thought that I was alone / desperately seeking friendship & reaching out out out floating on desperate waves looking for someone / pleading in the night that I would find somebody to spend time with / searching & searching with the mistaken impression that I was alone / looking for someone I could enjoy being with & embrace & understand & be understood by / but with time I’d see the the whole time / I’d been surrounded by friends
one day I opened my eyes & saw that
I’d never been alone
& I began to find friends everywhere I looked
I was friends with the sun in the sky
the rainbows up ahead
the ideas & questions of if & why
birds singing in the forest I passed thru
each blade of grass covered with morning dew
birds outside my window chirping in the morning
in the lightening & thunder crashing out their warning
the rain pouring onto the pavement
peace, love, & independence
the moon watching gently over the night
the first brand new ray’s of the sunrise’s light
& the twinkling stars I wish upon
the joy contained in each beautiful song
the hummingbirds sipping nectar from flowers
in the fun & freedom filling my every hour
I found friendship in
leaves rustling & drifting down in the breezes
music floating from open windows
jazz musicians playing in cafes
magical sounds of harmonies
artwork & music & films & books &
poems on the walls
crashing waves upon the shore
& the sun melting onto the water in the afternoon
the smell of freshly mowed grass
& the after-rain’s fresh scent
& the sunsets & the sunrises
in the adventures I have everyday
& in happiness
I found a friend
- Published 1 YouTube video (Episode 034 of The Ashlee Craft Show).
- Downloaded video clips for my mission statement video that I am working on.
- Wrote 10 poems.
- Drew 8 farm animal coloring pages for the coloring book that I am working on. Almost done with this book!
- Started seriously practicing & studying guitar again. I slacked off on it for a while but I missed it & I want to become really, really good at playing guitar.
- Made 5 Instagram posts, several of which promoted specific products of mine.
- Published 1 blog post.
- Spent a few hours sorting my Google Drive to help me organize & find my files better.
- Got a new haircut that makes me look like the person I want to become.
- Filmed 50% of a video about my new haircut.
- Worked on editing & creating the images for 1 of the blog interviews I am working on.
- Made 2 new pages on my website, including one which includes a sortable list of the interviews I have conducted.
- Got clearer about who I want to become. Researched a few things in this area.
- Networked with 1 new person.
- Decided to get pet crested geckos after doing a lot of research.
- Saw The Beach Boys in concert!
- Began reading “Be Obsessed or Be Average” by Grant Cardone & “Willpower Won’t Work” by Benjamin Hardy. Finished reading “I Will Follow You: A Poetry Novel” by C. J. Robinson.
- Slacked off on eating vegetables & on exercise. I am disappointed in this, because I want to be exceptionally healthy. I know I won’t achieve that if I don’t make healthy eating & exercise a consistent habit. I created some plans on how I can change my environment to eliminate my excuses.
- I felt like I lost some momentum at the beginning of the week, but I regained the momentum towards the end of the week & had a great weekend.
reflecting upon the silver bar sidewalks & the misty moonlit jaunt thru the breeze double rainbow like a pot of gold in the sky / illuminations / reflecting on windows of trucks & on the sunglasses of passerby / on the Sunday / in the rain
driving thru the puddles / rustling of tires against water sprinkling it upwards showing showering rainstorm reflections
looking in the foggy mirror & at everything mistaken & distorted by the silver / like a whole other world hidden behind glass / distorted in the golden gaze rectified in my precision & by my passion / rejuvenated & suddenly understanding who I was the entire time
down many mistaken roads I walked & many mistaken lies I spoke / many sights of sorrow & many things of beauty filled my vision / down many darkened alleyways filled with soot I trod & many days it just never dawned upon me that I what I’d yearned for & what I’d sought had been there all along / I just had never seen them
I thought what I’d been looking for was something that could be bought / so I looked & looked in all the windows to every store but I kept finding myself wanting more & more / I thought what I’d searched for was far away from me & that by leaving this place, I could be free / so I ran away so I wouldn’t be alone only to find that I’d always been home / I thought what I needed was the love in somebody’s heart & that by finding that love, I’d make a start / so I searched for the one I was looking to find only to see I’d been there the whole time / all that time, I was only too blind to see as I looked & searched & cried & yearned only to find that all along, I’d been exactly where I needed to be
it hadn’t been money or distance or love that I’d needed / I didn’t need to go anywhere or buy anything or find someone to love me / I just needed to see the beauty within me
& all the loneliness turned to friendship, all the dark into light, & suddenly I began seeing the world with my own eyes / my own eyes looking at my own destiny / my own life / now I was free
I had been deaf / to the reflections / of the music / rhythm beating beating beating beating onwards / onwards / into the next reflection
- Made 1 YouTube video (Episode 033 of The Ashlee Craft Show).
- Downloaded 5 new fonts from the awesome Google Fonts.
- Faxed off IRS letter to update EIN with new company name!
- Downloaded numerous Kindle eBooks on the programming language Python so I can start learning it.
- Networked with 14 new people.
- Began working on a video about my personal “Mission Statement”.
- Installed DaVinci Resolve video editing software on my computer.
- Made post on here about interviewing people from my blog & received a lot of responses! Began writing interview questions for some of the people.
- Organized more of my Google Drive, which will ultimately make all my files easier to find.
- Wrote & published 2 blog posts.
- Had revelation about WHAT DO I REALLY WANT? (I wrote about this revelation here http://www.ashleecraft.com/personal-evolution/5-beautiful-rare-things-want-feel-2018/)
- Drew 3 new designs, which I will put on products in my online store once I edit them.
- Used CoSchedule’s Headline Anaylzer tool for the first time & was impressed by it.
- Re-vamped my Evernote to-do list to make it more practical & easier to use.
- Saw Billy Joel in concert!
- Went to Alpaca Magic USA, a local alpaca farm in Homosassa Springs, FL. Got to feed & pet alpacas, & got great footage for a YouTube video about alpacas!
- Began writing my 50 Adorable Moose Facts book, & got about half of it done.
- Felt like I lived with passion more of the days this week than not. I did a lot of amazing, fun things! My anxiety bothered me for a few days & on those days I had no motivation to do anything. But I took it easier when I needed to & worked through it.
- Slacking on my veggie-munching goals. I’m lazy when it comes to eating vegetables. So I bought mini veggie cups of beets & three-bean salad, as well as some fruit squeeze pouches, so I have no excuses. Ate sugar compulsively two days in the past week. Still not exercising as much as I wanted to.
- Began reading “Love Yourself Like Your Life Depends on It” by Kamal Ravikant & “I Will Follow You: A Poetry Novel” by C. J. Robinson. Finished reading “Love Yourself Like Your Life Depends On It”.