I've just returned from the SCBWI Winter Conference in NYC as half this title indicates. As for "First Thoughts", they are a bit of a jumble. Themes that come to mind (as also indicated by the sketches above) include "Juggling Priorities", "How to Play my Hand", and "Oh I don't even know!". I was hoping to have this happy and clear first post regarding the conference but I feel neither happy nor clear.
I need some serious time to think about what I did (or didn't) get out of this event. I can start with a few things I did get (this list is more to bolster myself than anything else!)
-I met and reconnected with several lovely and talented bloggers and illustrators.
-I had a nice face-to-face meeting with the art director of the 2 books I will be working on soon. I learned some great things about the projects, the publisher, and can now put a friendly face to a voice.
-I heard some really powerful speakers, my favorites being Carolyn Mackler, Harry Bliss (amazingly refreshing, honest and real... PLUS super talented!), and Richard Peck
-I went to the MOMA and saw a wonderful Lucian Freud exhibit.
-A new appreciation for the New England regional conference put on by the NESCBWI. I think they do (dare I say it?) a much better job in giving illustrators opportunities to be seen and promoted. I'm looking forward to this April's event. To be fair, I think in years past, the NYC conference has done that as well, perhaps I picked the wrong year to attend for what I presently need in my career.
For a drilled down review of the event in detail, check out Leezy's blog. She's done an amazing job of covering all the events including the illustrator's intensive. She's also really nice and has a lovely portfolio!
Perhaps I'll post more about the event when I've processed things a bit more.