I wasn't planning to do any sort of year-end reflection, but I'm so glad I did.
It's so easy to forget past events and accomplishments when I'm in a lull or a rut. But looking back, I have a lot to be proud of from the past year and it's nice to remember. Thanks to
My friend Vanessa who suggested that we both make something and hold each other accountable,.

To summarize the year, I chose my favorite highlight from each month and animated some elements of the drawing. I hope you enjoy it!  

 
 

January

 A few concept sketches for women's march posters

A few concept sketches for women's march posters

 

2017 began in protest

I didn't end up making a sign for the Women's March, even though I played around with a few concept sketches. Like most people marching, I am a total newb to activism and wasn't sure what to bring with me. I loved reading all of the signs around me, however, and was delighted to receive this book from my sister only 2 months later (how did they make that so fast?!).

 

February

 
 the sketch evolution of my visual itinerary of a week in San Francisco

the sketch evolution of my visual itinerary of a week in San Francisco

 

Scoping out the scene

My husband and I decided to move to San Francisco in January, so during this trip to SF I met with friends, collaborators, and potential clients. I had lunch some people from the iPad team at Apple, and began to realize the possibilities of setting up shop in The Bay. 

 
 

March

 the correlation between caffeine consumption and creativity 

the correlation between caffeine consumption and creativity 

 

Back to the grind....

....literally. I brought some Blue Bottle beans back home from SF and started a morning pour over ritual. I would fill my mini Chemex and sketch while I enjoyed the brew. I was working on my commission for Apple and another illustration project most of this month, so I drank a lot of coffee and created so..... many..... concepts. 

 
 

April

 My favorite concept from the cutting room floor

My favorite concept from the cutting room floor

 

Learning new things...

I wonder if the other illustrators that Apple commissioned spent as much time as I did on their illustrations. Part of the reason I spent so much time was that I was learning a new app (Procreate) along the way. I really love the level of artistic control that it provides you with the brushes. I'm glad to now have this as a new tool for my work! Learned a TON working on this project. 

 
 

May

 The evolution of the first infographic in the series

The evolution of the first infographic in the series

 

Another big project!

Even though RJ and I had been working on this assignment on and off for several months, this project was a scramble at the last minute to get things ready for publication on May 1st, which is Labor Day for Spain and many other Latin American countries. I had a lot of fun embellishing more traditional graphs to provide additional context and humanize the data for this work. 

 
 

May (#2) 

 The process of downsizing our personal possessions

The process of downsizing our personal possessions

 

Feeling the squeeze

This reflection isn't just about my work projects-- it's also about my personal journey. In addition to having several projects going on, I was prepping our house to go on the market. I didn't cognitively feel any anxiety, but physically my body was sending me signals. In particular, it became really hard for me to take a full, satisfying breath. 

 
 

June

 such a great self discovery exercise! 

such a great self discovery exercise! 

 
 

Soaking up DC

June was our last full month living in DC and I tried to fully enjoy it while checking things off the to-do list. I really loved hosting my scholars from Higher Achievement for a "Careers in Design" field trip, and I loved being interviewed for the Policy Viz Podcast. But my favorite work product came from taking Mari Andrew's class on Skillshare: Drawing for Self Discovery. The "Switching to Decaf" slice of the pie above is a direct result of the breathing issues that started in May. It did help a little! 

 
 

July

 Our trek across the good old U.S. of A

Our trek across the good old U.S. of A

 
 

And then we moved!

We spent much of July prepping/packing for the move and planning our trip across the country. The drive was so much more fun than I thought it would be, and I wanted to illustrate the journey so that Reid and I could remember it. You can find time lapse videos of our trip at #PennyandCamGoWest

 
 

August

 One of my early #100dayproject posts

One of my early #100dayproject posts

 

Landing and then taking off

August was tricky, but awesome. I signed up to work at a retreat for five days within the first two weeks of landing in SF. By the time I had semi-unpacked and found a dog sitter it was time to leave. The retreat was an incredible experience and I'm so glad I took it on. When I got back I attended a meet up event for the #100DayProject and I decided to take it on myself, with the goal of weaving more photography into my work. 

 
 
September_Gif_Small.gif
 

Dreamy clients

I spent some time in September working on this fun video project with the George Lucas Education Foundation. This was another great learning experience with a super fun client. It didn't hurt that the subject matter was fascinating as well. You can check out the final full video with commentary on Facebook or as part of the full article on Edutopia.com

 
 

October

October_Gif.gif
 

Travel and Project Fatigue

In October I had a lot of travel and several mishaps with bookings and delays. By the time this trip to Scottsdale was coming to an end I was SO ready to just be home and start feeling settled in San Francisco. I started to lose interest and get frustrated in the 100 day project, which I think is pretty common. Thanks to those of you who left me some encouragement! I'm planning to pick it back up in 2018. 

 
 

November

 Some pages from a workshop that I graphically recorded

Some pages from a workshop that I graphically recorded

 

Rejuvenation

In November I had two opportunities to step up my graphic recording game. I had a lot of fun creating new templates for this workshop that had a "pop art super hero" aesthetic. These two gigs reinvigorated my excitement about this work and the value of bringing conversations to life with visuals.

 
 

December

 

Reflection

I'm counting this Year in Review project as my December highlight. I've been in a bit of a creative slump, and this process of reflection has been a great reminder of all that I have accomplished in the past year. It was hard to choose just one highlight for many of the months! With that in mind, I couldn't resist throwing in a few additional personal favorites. 

 
 

Honorable Mentions

just a fun doodle of Lady Gaga's "Million Reasons"

 A visual resume, for pets! 

A visual resume, for pets! 

 A Standout scholar from a year long visual thinking seminar

A Standout scholar from a year long visual thinking seminar

How it felt to be leaving dc

 

Thank you so much for following along!!