Some artist angst

Quite often when I finish an illustration I am unhappy with it. This is nothing unique – just about any creative person you talk to will have similar feelings about their own work. I don’t like to discuss my disappointment about any specific piece because I don’t want how I view my illustration to ruin someone else’s enjoyment of it. Plus, if I did that, pretty much everything I draw would be ruined for people.

This is a thing that I manage, and learn to deal constructively with my disappointment at my own lack of skill. It’s never good enough (whatever that means), but I can use this energy and channel it into making the next thing better. Occasionally a piece niggles moreso than the others, and the mistakes and inadequacies I perceive in it is like having a scratch I can’t ever itch.


I had this feeling very strongly when I saw my cocoon print in person for the first time (which I sold as a Rape Crisis donation print at the end of last year). I realised that I’d missed out on a lot of the colour and texture I’d wanted to achieve with the piece. This was disappointing to me, because the core concept was so strong and I felt like I’d not done it justice.

Regardless of my personal feelings the print was well-loved and the fundraiser was a great success. I’m so grateful to everyone who donated and enjoyed the original piece, it is still very special to me and it means a lot that you engaged so much with the work. I hope that my original knitted cocoon continues to give you warmth and safety when you need it.

For Shakti

I’ve been wanting to do another print fundraiser for another women’s charity, and Shakti stood out as an obvious choice. I wasn’t sure what image to do for them, and after trying out a few different concepts I came back to my original cocoon painting. The imagery works as well for Shakti as it did for Wellington Rape Crisis, and I just couldn’t shake the feeling that I wanted another go at this illustration.


Comparing the two side by side I’m surprised by how much my work has grown in the last six months. I am so pleased that this version captures a bit more of what I was originally aiming for. Quite often I feel like my work stays the same or gets worse, so it’s nice to see evidence that I am growing, that what I am doing is working. Re-drawing a piece like this is the clearest way to see those results.

Print donation

$15 of every print sold will go to Shakti. Please read about the wonderful work they are doing for international women facing domestic violence.

If you bought the first print and like this one, please contact me and I will send you a 25% off code for this print ($15 will still be going to Shakti). I have a record of your transactions, so please use the same name/email address as the one you sent to qualify for the discount.

This print will be on pre-order and printed in August 2014. If you require a copy earlier for some reason, contact me as this can be arranged.

If you do not want to buy a copy of this print, please consider making a donation to Shakti through their channels:

Purchase the donation print

Thanks to Pollyanne Peña for her time and support in helping set this print donation up.