I was so fortunate to be able to attend ICON 8 here in Portland over the past few days. It was exactly what I needed. In many ways the family-having hiatus was like graduating from college and building up a career all over again. To see others who've thrived through difficulties similar or worse than mine is inspiring.

Paula Scher's keynote was awesome and I'm so impressed by her bulldozer approach to problem solving. Her touch is nuanced and well-thought out as she fearlessly powers into a project. I love that.

Listening to seasoned pros who've adapted to adversity and taken roads they might not have considered when they started out was great. Everyone starts somewhere and who knows where you end up. I could listen to Carson Ellis talk all day. She was wonderful. I love how she's evolved as an artist and continues to find new and interesting things to challenge herself with. No matter how full her plate might be professionally, she always finds delight and joy to bring to her personal work. And she's a damn cool person, so... yeah. Girl Crush!

I met so many amazing artists and illustrators along the way. Everyone's striving to make their work all that it can be and bring it to the world. And y'all better be ready for Esme Shapiro, that's all I'm saying! It was a great show and I'm thrilled to have gone.