Make your Own Happily Ever After


I’m a total sap. I can’t get enough of romantic stories. I love the way they make me feel. That tingle that starts in your toes and works it’s way up your spine leaving you with a warm gushy feeling and a smile on your face.

How can you not love the idea of “Happily Ever After”? It’s just, sometimes you need to work for it and make Your OWN Happily Ever After!! Defining what that means to you and changing up the rules a bit if you need to.

I am working towards mine everyday!! ‘Cause ultimately isn’t that what we all want. To find love and be truly happy, both in what we do and who we are.

Happy Friday and here’s to making your OWN Happy Ending Happen!



on my desktop :: Surtex Final Booth Layout

Booth layout finished and banners all printed!!

Now on to laying out all the new portfolio binder pages…

Just a couple of hundred more things to check off my list and then I’ll be ready to rock and roll!!

Urban Repair


A Friend of my just posted this on Facebook and I just had to share!! Artist Juliana Santacruz Herrera, has taken to the streets of Paris to repair potholes and unfixed cracks with her colorful knitted repairs. If you want to read more abot Juliana just drop by here.

prepping press packs for surtex

It took us all day on Monday, but Alex and I were able to put together all of my press packs for Surtex. By the end we were a well oiled production team and had some pretty little booklets to show for it.

No boring folders here!!

Sketchbook Stories :: Kieren Dutcher

Kieren’s path to her dreams has also been long and meandering, much like mine. But, I think  sometimes taking the scenic route is the only way we can pick-up those much needed skills to be successful. Kieren has just put her first children’s book is out in the world by Tuttle Publishing and today she is going to share with us a little part of her journey.


Here is Kieren’s Sketchbook Story ::

KD: I saw this book in a bookstore and asked for it for my 14th birthday, The Tyger Voyage by Richard Adams, illustrated by Nicola Bayley. I LOVED her illustrations so much I cried when I got the book and knew I wanted to do something like that when I grew up. I’ve taken a lot of detours along the way, but have come back to what I most was inspired by so long ago. I went to UC Davis, then CCAC for graphic design, where I met my husband (and our daughter is there now, studying animation!). I worked in design studios, got a teaching credential, and have been teaching art to kids part time ever since, as well as raising my own two creative children. I love working with kids, and am totally inspired by the looseness and playfulness in their art. I get story ideas from them all the time, especially when they are chatting away while they work!

KD: In the past few years I have really been focusing on my art and writing. Last year was a big year for me, I had artwork in three exhibits, sold a story to Highlights magazine and my first picture book, Chinese and English Nursery Rhymes:Stories and Songs to Share, came out last spring.


KD: Now I am sending out two other picture books I’ve written and illustrated, sketches are shown here for a silly spoof on Goldilocks, with a family out camping in the woods, and the bear as Goldilocks invading their campsite, sitting in their camp chairs, trying on their bathing suits, sleeping in their sleeping bags.


KD: I’m also sending out a rhyming book about what’s in season at the farmer’s market and a story about a biracial girl who has to make a heritage doll for a school project. I also love pattern, folk art, and love to make quilts, here are photos of two I’ve made recently. My goal for this year is to find an agent. I would LOVE to design fabric, I love to sew!



Here’s where you can find Kieren ::

website :
     blog :

a sample kind of day

My head has been down with my noise to the grind as I try finish all my prep for Surtex. Time seems to be slipping thru my fingers and I don’t seem to be able to move fast enough. And everything is takes 10x longer then it should because of unforeseen issues (like my computer crashing every 10 minutes with the enormous files I’ve been working on). I guess that’s the way it is when a deadline gets closer and closer.

But on the upside the samples are just rolling in!! :-)

 This is my wedding gift bag for Haynes Besco!! I was really surprised when I opened the box because in my original files the flower was all cream with hits of light pink and the blue buds were also pink. But I think it turned out great and I actually really like the blue version :-)


Megan and my joint postcards just came in!! I think they came out really well. Now I’m working on cleaning up my mailing list and am hoping to get these bad boys out in circulation by the end of next week.

And my glass mounted wall art for Whispering Magic Words came in just in time for our Sweet Spot Give Away!!

Sketchbook Stories :: Dan Santat


I met Dan at the first SCBWI Conference I ever went to. I actually had to “call in sick” from my job to attend. It was so totally worth it and I’m betting Dan thought the same!

I vividly remember Dan’s work standing out from the pack at the portfolio review. A group of us snuck out to the balcony and peered over the ledge to see what the judges were looking at. They spent the majority of their time flipping thru his portfolio!!

We were all very envious when Dan was invited into Arthur Levine inner circle and offered two book deal on the spot. (and when I say “we” what I really mean is “I” ;-) It was pretty AMAZING!! And something most of us just dream of. Really though, it couldn’t of happened to a more amazing artist. Dan has a great sense of humor that is matched by his technical skills and strong personal vision. Pure Awesomeness!

Dan now has over half a dozen pictures books to his name (including some of my favorites: Always Lots of Heinies at the Zoo, and Chicken Dance ), and a stellar client list that is longer than my arm.

Here is Dan’s Sketchbook Story ::

DS: I thought I’d share the process of how the characters on my show The Replacements came to be.

DS: The idea came from an old comic book. The sections where you can buy disappearing ink and exploding pens and so forth. I thought it would be a funny idea if a kid could order new cool parents to replace the uncool ones that you currently have. I liked the idea of being able to choose your own parents as a foil to the old saying of “you can’t choose your parents” etc. and that’s essentially how the idea came to be. 


DS: The idea was originally going to be a children’s book idea where a little boy is tired of his parents rules of wash behind your ears, eat your vegetables and the sort. So he orders cool parents to replace his old ones who when are replaced are unnoticing of their removal as if they were just furniture. The dad is busy reading his newspaper in his easy chair and the mom is busy talking on the phone.

DSThe original idea for the father was a Mexican Wrestler named El Papa and the mother was a cowgirl named Cowgirl Annie. When I was asked to pitch it as an animated series Disney had mentioned that they wanted ‘hipper’ parents, and so, I changed them out to a daredevil stuntman and a British secret agent.


DS: It really is a no brainer to their inspirations. Dick Daring was modeled after stuntman Evel Kinevel and
Agent K was modeled after Emma Peel from the old TV show The Avengers. (Someday I will convince my wife to be her for Halloween)


DS: The kids were a bit different. Originally Todd Daring was the older brother and his sister Riley (who was Zoe at the time but changed because of Britney Spears sister’s show Zoey 101) had been flipped. Riley was to be the older sister and Todd was the younger. Reason for this is because Disney is rather girl-centric in terms of their show demographic and so they wanted an early teen girl who girls could relate more to.


DS: As development went on we revised and refined the characters. Mike Moon did an amazing interpretation of my characters which blew me away and I found myself compelled to go in his direction and we ended up
with a healthy balance between the two.


DS: The Replacements ran for approximately 3 seasons between 2006-2009. You can still find it on ABC and Disney Channel.


DS: Riley is named after the Executive Producer’s niece.


Interview with Dan Santat from Elizabeth Bird on Vimeo.


Here’s where you can find Dan ::

website ::

Crafty Goodness

I broke out the plastalina clay and watercolors this weekend. So I could work with Ava Blu entertained besides me. All in all it was a pretty crafty and productive weekend. Well minus the removal of popcorn from one of Ava Blu’s nostrils. She was experimenting (her words not mine).

The proof is in!!


Just got the proof for Megan & my joint ad in Total Art Licensing announcing the Sweet Spot!! It came out really nice! I can’t wait to see it in print.

I’ve been in crazy prep mode and it’s gonna be Surtex 24/7 till show time, so just bare with me. I’ve been cranking stuff out, but these large banner files I’ve been workinng on have been seriously crashing my system. My poor computer can’t handle to have more than 1 program open at a time, and even then I am crossing my fingers and saying a little prayer to the adobe gods every time I press save.