Would you like to be our next member spotlight?
At WiT, we love to shine a light on our members' stories and give them a chance to answer questions about themselves, plus offer advice to other members.
Artist / Licensor
Rejection and persistence have become my allies. Without the pain of rejection and the fruits of persistence, the goals I've attained would never have moved past being thoughts and dreams.
More About Me
Tell us about your career journey and how you ended up here
I'm a self-taught artist who specializes in creating contemporary fantasy composite art for consumer products such as puzzles, greeting cards, journals, stationery, wall art, etc.
I was born In Indianapolis, IN and grew up in a very creative family. My love for art started at an early age and continued into high school where I took art classes to improve my skills. After graduating high school I joined the Air Force where I was able to participate in military art competitions, winning many awards.
After leaving the military I studied engineering in college (still entering art and photography competitions) and landed an international award for color photography leading to my work being published in “Photographers Forum” in 1991.
I put my art on hold for 26 years to raise a child and care of a disabled parent, and got back into art in November 2017. I painted and created as much art as I could for the next 2.5 years to create a portfolio and built a website to display it. Then I attended a licensing expo in May 2020 and secured my first licensing contract. Since then, I've secured several more with one of my recently signed contracts being with Diamond Art Club -- production starts in 2023 with sales beginning in 2024.
Even with all this success, I still hadn't fulfilled my dream of having a design published on puzzles. So last year I started networking with licensing agents and reaching out to the major puzzle manufactures, sending them emails asking for their submission requirements then sending my portfolio. Much to my dismay, no takers. Then all of a sudden in mid October 2022, I get an email from Kailyn Marcotte, owner of JIGGY puzzles inviting me to submit designs for the 2022 holiday season, so I did and one of my designs was chosen to be published in their kids Junior JIGGY puzzle line.
It was at this point I decided to join WIT to pursue education, mentorship and networking to expand my business.
Describe yourself in 5-7 words - have fun with it!
Silly (with my closest friends), persistent, loving, very supportive.
Tell us about a time when you thrived at work, and what you learned about yourself from that experience.
I learned a lot about myself during the 2.5 years I was ramping up my art portfolio. I had no idea how much easier life would be once my my family issues were resolved and my time was finally my own. The ideas flowed and so did the creativity. I honestly NEVER imagined I would have achieved all I have in such a short amount of time.
What is your favorite part of your job?
Creating art and researching ideas for new art
How about when you "turn off" and go home? Any hobbies or fun activities you are involved in?
https://www.instagram.com/cherylwalshfineart/ Underwater Fine Art
https://www.instagram.com/andrewgonzalezart/ airbrush artist
Iridescent fairy wing artist
dipped resin floral art
intricate paper artists in Dubai
Anything else you want to share with the WiT Community?*
I would love to be in the mentorship program as either a mentee or mentor or both!