FIRST THOUGHT: Powers of a Girl
Walt Stanchfield was an illustrator best known for Disney classics like The Jungle Book. He later taught new animators and shared something along the lines of: everyone has 10,000 bad drawings in them, so you might as well get them out now. I adore this idea because, even if you’re not an artist it rings true. We’re terrified of failure, so much so that we don’t put our work out there, we don’t bring up that new idea for fear of it being shot down, and we don’t even begin. Put simply, we all suck at some point in our career. It’s best to accept that and embrace those poorly executed projects and networking mistakes. That’s how we learn, that’s how we grow.
WOMEN IN NUMBERS: 27 percent
When we hear about the newest amazing invention or the best new rising star, we tend to let it dim our own brightness. Don’t forget that it takes time, like a ton of time, for people to achieve their goals. Don’t forget too, the importance of letting someone else’s light illuminate the path for you and others to follow. Marvel and DC are just a few companies that are starting to give us some shining stars to emulate, with 27 percent of their characters being female.
WOMAN TO WATCH: Alice X. Zhang, Illustrator
If you’re in a creative industry, you feel plenty of self-doubt. There’s a reason why we share the stories of women who do brave stuff—it’s a reminder that you can too. Alice X. Zhang is a phenomenal example of just that.
About a decade ago, Alice graduated from Rhode Island School of Design. From the get-go, she’s explored her interests in cinema and design as a full-time freelance artist. While Alice has garnered quite a following on social media, she hit next-level fame last year when she tweeted a few of her paintings of Beyoncé.
Alice didn’t choose Beyoncé because they’re besties (though I’m sure they are now). Instead, she was simply inspired by a fashion editorial spread in Vogue. She liked it and used the images as practice. That’s it. Alice followed what she enjoyed and that’s clearly something that admirers can sense.
As a Chinese-American illustrator, Alice brings a particularly unique perspective to the world of comics. She’s illustrated for DC Films, Lucasfilm, Marvel, and shows like Doctor Who and Sherlock. Alice’s art hits your heart immediately, with its expressive and ethereal strokes.
It’s truly no surprise that Alice has just finished one of her most impressive projects to date, Marvel’s book called Powers of a Girl. Written by Lorraine Cink and illustrated by Alice, the book goes into the stories behind characters like America Chavez, Ms. Marvel and Squirrel Girl. It’s a fantastic primer for those who don’t know much about comics and it’s an excellent gift for mega-fans.
Let’s face it, we could all use a little supergirl magic in our lives.
QUITE THE QUOTE
Shonda Rhimes said:
"Words have power. TV has power. My pen has power."