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2012 has so far been a very busy year. My new venture into children’s books started with a visit to NY for the SCBWI Winter Conference. It was a wonderful experience and the community of children’s illustrators seemed very warm and receptive. And learning how much I didn’t know is always a valuable lesson.  I am just delighted to be working with my new agent, Chris Tugeau. She’s sharp, enthusiastic and inspiring. I’m splitting my occasional free time between sample work for Chris and a book dummy for an amazing text by children’s author, James Thach. More to come in later posts. On the project front, there have been several adult book cover commissions and a few editorial jobs in the mix. I hustled to get several out the door before our trip south, and wound up hauling my large format scanner and my printer plus all my painting supplies to Florida. So the trip was a comfortable mix of work and play.

Below is a piece for Strategic Finance Magazine that was commissioned by one of my favorite art directors, Mary Zisk. It accompanied a story presenting a corporate survey on whistleblowing: what was seen, was it reported, who kept silent, and regret for acting or not acting.

Whistleblowing: to keep silent or not

The Milken Institute’s story “Don’t Kill the Lawyers. Deregulate them!” offered an opportunity for silliness. The art director, Joannah Ralston, her editor and I had a good time coming up with product labeling for off-the-shelf legal specialties.

Aisle 6, on the left

Of course there was the play time on Sugarloaf Key and the best fresh fish ever, thanks to our Yellowtail fisher-person experts Pat Jackson, Carol Sullivan and Ron Maier.

Cooking with Djami: Paella for ten

Yellowtail Snapper fish tacos

Back home for a week of catch-up then a quick trip to New Orleans to help with some family matters. Wise planning put us there just in time for the French Quarter Fest, an amazing local mix of fantastic music, unbelievable food and the best people watching ever.

On the way to Richard’s fishing camp near Des Allemands, southwest of N.O.


Lucky Dogs, of Ignatius J. Reilly fame


One of the stages on Royal Street


Mardi Gras Indian – the real deal


She looks so much like the violinist on Treme!


Washboard man