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  • Any glimpse into the life of an animal quickens our own and makes it so much the larger and better in every way.
  • My Art in Dog World Magazine

    May
    8
    2008

    dog world magazine

    I had quite the giddy little girl surprise yesterday when I opened my mailbox – I received the July issue of DogWorld Magazine. I wasn’t expecting this issue until – well, July. So I was pretty surprised to see it and cannot TELL you how quickly I opened up to the inside cover contents:

    dog world magazine inside contents

    Now, this is where the squealing like a little girl part came in. Those of you who know my work know exactly why already, those of you who don’t? Click here, then come back and have another look. If any of you would like to reminisce, you could go back to my blog archives and have a walk down memory lane, and see how Katie’s portrait came to life in my studio.

    When I was asked to display artwork in DogWorld Magazine, I was absolutely ecstatic. I had to submit work for consideration, first, and then the editorial team would approve the final artwork selected for this issue. Katie was an obvious choice, she’s a gorgeous purebred Lab. I quickly provided everything they requested and it wasn’t long before her portrait was issued their stamp of approval. So much so, in fact, that they gave her a full page:

    dog world magazine dog art inside july 2008 issue

    From start to finish, Katie’s portrait is “all me”. What’s different about this piece from my other portraits is that I also did the photo shoot with Katie. I selected this composition from my own photography – so it is exactly how I envisioned her from start to finish. Getting down on the floor with her and hanging out with her, seeing how she behaved around her mom, this conveys her spirit in a portrait perfect way, from first hand knowledge and experience.

    The greatest part about this opportunity is that it is who it is. Dog lovers, those who have those special connections with their dogs, trainers, aficionados – these are the eyes that will pick up this magazine and see this portrait, so this is such an insane honor. Really. I can’t even wrap my brain around how flattered and overwhelming it is.

    dog world magazine painting caption leanne wildermuth

    Other artists work included in the “Gallery of Dogs” spread include Michael Pfleghaar, Louise Peterson, Nicholas Moss, Paul Boddum, Marjorie Pesek, Lori Alexander and Hilda Spain-Owen.

    If you’re in the pet store or Borders or wherever there’s a great big magazine rack – pick up the July (2008) issue of Dog World.

    Mememmeeeeeee

    April
    7
    2008

    Leanne Belrichard Wildermuth April 2008 portrait' class=
    My dear friend Taba (gardeners : visit her site.) asked me to take a pic of my new not-gray haircolor. I colored it Saturday morning with some Ion colors from Sally Beauty Supply– mixing 3 parts of their liquid Color Brilliance golden brown with 1 part darkest brown. I honestly didn’t care what color it turned out to be, as long as it was not-gray. It is definitely not-gray, and I actually dig it. I am sure I’ll be coming back to search my own dang archives to figure out what I used and what it looked like!

    So, since she asked, and if I told ANYone else that I know that I took a new pic of myself they’d all be like “ooh lemme see, I wanna see!” here it is, and there you go. (And if you want to see what I looked like when I was a youngin’, click here.)

    I did measure and weigh in this morning, my measurements are all the same except for my thighs, which went down 1/2-inch (YAY for vanishing thunder thighs!) and my weight, which is down 1.7lbs from last Monday. Progress, sweet progress. So, to reward myself for such good results, I walked for 30 minutes at 3.5mph at an incline today. Yeowch. LOL

    Time to dig back into the design queue – so much to get done this week so I can get back out into the studio next week!

    Four Score, or Several Years Ago

    April
    2
    2008

    The other night, Paige (my BFFL) and I were reminiscing about the good old days, how old we are, and the creepy part? Who has died from our two classes. She graduated a year ahead of me, so I don’t remember some of the folks in her class – in fact, I don’t remember a lot of the folks in my own class, either!

    I told her about a dream I had not too long ago that included this super sweet guy, Ken Carpenter. I remember Ken. He was a jock, he was good looking, above all else, he was cool. He was a sweetheart. Nice to everyone, smiling, laughing. He was just like that in my dream, too. I don’t know what he was doing there, but there he was – and I waved and greeted him like we were going to have coffee and catch up on years gone by.

    I Googled him the next morning, and was so sad when I found out that he’s passed away. Hodgkin’s disease took him when he was just 29. I about cried, honestly. Obviously he didn’t change, as the community revered him so much they named a park after him in the little town I grew up in. I intend to take the girls to that park when we get back up there in June.

    Paige and I talked about that, and a few others who are doing well – and more who had passed away. Seems cancer is the devil, and it’s snatching up more and more people than I realized.

    By the way – did you know that you can request your annual mammograms to start any time? You don’t have to wait until your 45. I’ve been having them done since I was around 27, when my sister-in-law passed away from what started out as breast cancer, and ended up ravaging her entire body. It’s never too soon to start checking.

    Well then I got to thinking about more people, people I lost touch with or just haven’t heard from in years. A couple of my best friends in high school drifted away, we kinda-sorta kept in touch but after I while I felt like I was more interested in maintaining a friendship than they were, so I took the hint and just stopped trying. Shalise, Jen, Erin, Tracy – they’ve all just disappeared.

    This morning I woke up thinking about Shalise. She went off to college, met a guy, fell in love, got married and had a baby. That’s about when we lost touch, so I thought I’d give her a Google. (hah! It’s better than getting hung up on, right? WHO? Who is this? Leanne? Leanne who?) I found something REALLY recent, like she’s doing this RIGHT NOW and dang if she still doesn’t have the biggest heart ever, she’s joined the 2008 MS Walk on May 4th. So of course I dropped a donation into her virtual bucket, and I think it would be really so cool if you did, too. Kinda sorta to say “hey” for me, more to support the cause, and applaud her for still being a sweetie-head. I think she has the most compassionate family I’ve ever met.

    Okay so while we were talking, I also had a movie flashback. It was Sandra Bullock in Hope Floats. She was the prom queen, yadda yadda and goes back to her home town and needs to get a job. She walks into an employment agency and a girl from high school runs the place, and finds it the perfect opportunity to tell her she doubt she can find an opening for a prom queen. Sandra admits that she has no idea how she treated this woman in high school, but she’s sure it couldn’t have been very nice since she’s hell-bent on putting her in her place. She asks if she could also put her in a job, too.

    MAN I could totally relate to that. I don’t remember people, I don’t know how I treated people, and though I definitely wasn’t a prom queen, I sure do wonder sometimes if I was a real foot-in-mouth kinda gal back then, too.

    I wonder, do you wonder? Do you find yourself surprised when you find out what someone’s doing now, what they look like? Do you attend your reunions? I haven’t, and don’t intend to… see above for my reasons. And just for fun, if you’re married and you want to show up in Google when someone’s lookin’ and they might not know your married name, add it to your blog somewhere. If you want to be found, that is.

    ;)
    Here’s me:
    Leanne Belrichard, Harry D. Jacobs Class of 1989
    I totally botched the link to donate to MS Walk 2008 – Please go here if you’d like to donate!

    Cat Portrait Pencil Drawing

    December
    3
    2007

    custom cat portrait art pencil graphite drawing

    See, power outages can be a good thing. I had received this commission to paint a pencil portrait of Moggie in a 4″ wide by 10″ high size a couple of weeks ago. Peeling myself away from the online part of making my living can be pretty tough, and honestly? I have a confession to make. I procrastinate. For good reason, I think (sometimes).

    I haven’t drawn a drawing since High School.

    Seriously, a true graphite pencil start to finish full drawing in its final form this is IT piece of artwork – it’s been about 18 years. You’d think that since I’m an artist for a living, I would produce more graphite drawings. I’ve worked in colored pencil, watercolor, oil, acrylic, even india inks – but it’s rare that someone asks a graphite of me. I always attributed that to not having any in my portfolio, I guess.

    Once in a while though, I get a client who asks “can you do this?….” and of course I never decline. I will, however, procrastinate at least a little out of sheer fear that I’m totally inept and unable to create something with a certain medium on a certain ground.

    I know, it’s crazy. I should know by know that this fear of mine is all in my head. This God given gift just flows through my hands out onto whatever is in front of me with whatever tool I have in my hand. I am so humbled by that. I finished Moggie lastnight (well, almost – she is in proofing stage and still needs whiskers and her tag wording, and then of course my signature) and when I took my hand away from the pad I thought “Woah. Well. There she is.” And when you finish something and see it through your own eyes but know it happened not because of anything you learned in school or taught yourself, it’s a sort of euphoria that you can’t feel from anything else.

    It’s when you crave that euphoria that you find yourself doing what you’re meant to do more often, and feeling a sense of peace and calm in your life that you can’t attain any other way.

    This is what dreams are made of, and this is how you live them.


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    How I learned Design

    July
    2
    2007

    Mary asked how I learned web page design, and if I took any classes.

    In 2001-2002, I decided after playing around online for a few years that I was an expert and bought a domain, this domain. I used a standard online template editor thing and my site looked something like this.

    Then I started looking for programs that would let me create something myself, and tried to figure out how to upload it – where to upload it – and get it to display online. In 2003, my website went through several updates and changes while I taught myself html, tables, rollovers – with a WYSIWIG editor called IBM Websphere. It used to be very purple. I also used to have a gazillion pages that I had to hand code, upload, and make all the navigation work together on individual pages. Looking back on that? Ick.

    In 2004, I went from green to my pumpkin/gold color I got another new look, with a new color. That has been my primary color palette since then, too. I was still in the table based layout thing, but I was finding sites and galleries that were using this thing called PHP. I had no idea what that was, so I started Googling it and trying to find a program that would let me write PHP in a WYSIWIG way, like IBM Websphere did with tables. I tried a couple of things – but quite honestly I just didn’t get it. I was blogging at the time on LiveJournal, so that didn’t help me learn anything at all – their templating system either assumed you knew PHP or gave you a variety of free themes to choose from. I switched over to Blogger, where I caught my first glimpse and understanding of how it all worked. How information is stored in a database and delivered through PHP code in the form of div tags and stylesheets – but once again, I ran into a brick wall, because I didn’t understand div tags or stylesheets, either.

    I swear, you’d think I’d have given up by then – but no, I forged onward, determined to learn it (because I’m cheap, that’s why).

    Somewhere along the line I Googled for templates. Themes. Designs. And I found some. And I studied them – and I started to develop a basic understanding of the role CSS played in how things displayed. I’ve always sortof known what the code meant, how it was supposed to work – I can read it just fine. I just didn’t know how to write it, or where it all stemmed from – where the master list with the shortcuts was kept.

    I started applying the things I was learning – playing with stylesheets through Blogger, and went through several revisions of my blog as I went.

    I found WordPress. I hired Lisa. (and Becca, too!)

    I knew how to make graphics. That was not a big issue, although I did need to really get much more familiar with PSP to take my graphic design to the next level, too. (And I’ll keep going with that, getting Draw and Painter as I get more advanced.) I Google the things I want to learn, and look for tutorials online for some things – many of the things I just visualize in my head and make it happen.

    The next challenge was that I needed to make the whole design as a graphic first, and then *know* as I was designing in PSP how I would cut the graphics up into little pieces and how they would come together in the stylesheet. I needed to incorporate the PHP, knowing what information that code was calling to pull into what space and where, and how to wrap something pretty looking around that information.

    I’m a hands on kind of girl. I bought CSS Mastery and refer to it on occasion, but most of the time I teach myself as I’m creating it, live on my design blog. (Another resource: CSS for Dummies) I have another installation of WordPress where I code up all of my graphics, tweak them, and write the stylesheet. I did refer to other stylesheets for a while, and I also was fortunate enough to find a mentor in Lisa – after I taught myself the basics and could stand on my own 10 fingers most of the time. I also did some free designs to get more familiar with stylesheets – but you really do need to be careful about doing things for free, because you might find some people expecting things for free once you’ve got yourself established.

    Thankfully, there’s a wealth of information available to learn from all over the internet that offer up free information. I have a bunch of them linked on under design resources, and I am more than happy to share my resources with anyone willing to try to figure things out and learn it themselves.

    As for my current status, I’m still learning. I feel much more comfortable now with what I know – but I also know that I don’t know it all, and probably never will. At the rate things change and grow on the internet, that is an impossibility – but I am determined to stay current (and browser upgrades will force me to do that), and determined to continue growing and maturing with the code.

    The Face Behind The Blog

    June
    27
    2007

    david dairey the face behind the blog memeShelly at This Eclectic Life tagged me to participate in The Face Behind The Blog meme. Shelly has a great collection of old photographs from her childhood days – now I don’t have that many in my possession, but I’ll do my best.

    Here’s how it goes, in the words of the originator, David:

    “Post a short blog article that includes a photograph (or a series of photos) showing the face behind your blog. If you already show a photo somewhere on your site (such as in your about page), then make your post more interesting and choose a photo that’s not currently online. Include links to other people that have displayed a photo, or include their photos in your post, adding a reference. A link back to David’s post is much appreciated, to help create a more personal community! Then tag as many others as you like in your post to spread the meme. Each person tagged should create their own post and repeat the process.”

    200pic1.jpgAlrightie then. Lemme see here. It all started out when I was a wee munchkin in a suit with a.. mom? What did you put on me? Is that a TIE? Ohhh the 70’s. It’s not my fault, my mommy made me do it. At least I’m wearing a skirt, I think? I don’t really know. But I’m cute, eh? I had those grandma-pinchy cheeks. Yep, the grandma’s loved me. The dad? Not so much. He bailed not long after this photo was taken. Can you believe it? I’m so stinkin’ cute, how could he leave? ::resisting urge to pinch my own baby cheeks::

    Completely skipping those awkward years of my youth because thankfully, those photos are in mom’s house, somewhere, and I am really fine with that. They can be lost, or found and burned – whatever works. I’m good. You know what I looked like at my Senior Prom – and that’s all that really matters, right?

    200pic2.jpg Skipping right on up to my late teens – early twenties (just saying that makes me feel old), when I lived in the beautiful sunny San Diego area. Aaah, those were the days. See how happy I am with my Super Big Hair? I loved living in California. I met one of my dearest friends there, after having worked with her for several months thinking she was a snotty valley girl – and here all along she thought I was a big B-word. Funny how first impressions can be so wrong! She and I hung out on Oceanside beach and Carlsbad.

    200pic3.jpgI can’t even begin to describe how much I loved living in California. I can still hear the sound of the waves crashing up onto those rocks, and I can smell the Pacific like it’s embedded in my sinuses. I miss living on the West Coast very much!

    At the time, I worked in Accounting. Can you believe it? I can’t. I’m horrible with numbers. I always say “that’s why God made calculators!” I worked hard, though, even though my brain hurt and recovery 200pic5.jpgdid require lots of cheap grocery store wine at the end of the day. Just kidding. I wasn’t a lush, but I did have a much more relaxed and carefree lifestyle while we were living there.

    All of these photos were taken by my friend Erin. Our men were both in the Marine Corps so we had a lot of fun getting gussied up and taking photos for them while they were on duty. I was even wearing her clothes at the time, which was cool because I always wanted to wear something smaller than a size 10. That only happened for like 6 months out of my whole entire life, and only because I sucked my gut in really really hard. She took the photos in black and white so you couldn’t see how my face was turning blue from holding my breath in.

    200pic6.jpg And then. I should just have you caption this photo for me. The winner would be something like “And then she moved back to the midwest.” or “Illinois. Takes the Cali right out of a girl.” You know, something gloomy and snowy that makes you want to grow your hair out long and wear college sweatshirts and put static guard on your hair in the fall and winter. Why am I showing you this? Just to show you folks on the West Coast what will happen if you move to the Midwest. You’ll completely forget how laid back and sensible life can be, and you’ll become one of those corn growers who doesn’t know how to put an infinitive in front of a verb. You’ll start saying things like “My hair needs cut.” instead of “My hair needs TO BE cut.” I swear, “to be” or not “to be” is never a question around here.

    200pic7.jpg Aaah getting settled in, chopping the hair off, adding a dog and then a kid to the brood, life is good. Chloe came first in 1993, then Catybug was born in 1996. The two of them got along famously as you can tell, Chloe guarded us even from that scary clickity thing that daddy was pointing at us. Then she smiled pretty because she realized she was on candid camera, and she was a smart girl. We’re coming up on the one year mark of having lost our first baby girl, so expect another mushy gushy kleenex getter of a post.

    200pic8.jpg Like I mentioned, we live on the Mighty Muddy Mississippi. We’re not allowed to feed those ducks anymore – can you believe that? Apparently a goose scared the crap out of a person, instead of the other way around, so now they’ve prohibited any of the good old traditions of going down to the river to feed the ducks. Catybug and I giggled a lot that day.

    200pic10.jpgThis is one of my favorite photos, but mom would have a meltdown if she saw her winky smiley face on the internet, so I blurred up her face some just to make her feel better. She’s really cute (go see her here, she actually doesn’t mind that one being on the web!) – I would have cut and pasted her head but boy that would have looked wierd. I got this great upright piano from a gal I worked with who was going to lose it to the burn pile if she didn’t find a home for it. I love having mom and my sisters over, we all sit around and play chopsticks and songs from when we were kids – and my mom also plays Grandma teacher with Catybug now, too. It’s a wonderful thing, those memories of playing the piano when I was a kid. I still know one or two songs from my childhood, too.

    200pic11.jpgI don’t think anyone who visits my blog has seen me pregnant. So TA-DA, here I am, pregnant with our little Chickeymonkey. Yes I gained like three hundred pounds and we had to install that backing up beeper on my rear end so I wouldn’t crash into people when I moved around. Sheesh. Yeah, pregnancy is beautiful – when it’s over and you’re reminiscing about it. This is me and my hubby on our second wedding day. The second marriage, I mean. And boy am I pregnant. Woah. Where’s the beach? Maybe you should just cover your eyes and scroll down now? That would be good. Thanks.

    leanne wildermuthThe Chickster wouldn’t let me get a photo of the two of us together, making things all even between sisters and all that – so I leave you with my most current photo from a couple of weeks ago. This is me, folks, in my studio. After all these years, I’m doing what I love to do. I’m creative every day, I get to be with my kids, I get to enjoy my home and my life and I get to savor it at a slower pace.

    And that concludes my “short blog article that includes a photograph (or a series of photos)”. What is short, anyway? I don’t even want to know the word count on this entry. It’s probably longer than a whole month worth of entries all put together.

    Who to tag?! Now I’m supposed to choose some people to do this. I can tell you who I’d like to see doing this – people who haven’t shared pics of themselves very often, if ever. I’m not going to tag anyone, though. I’m going to ask that if you’ve made it this far, and if this is something you’d like to do, please let me know and I’ll link to you.

    * * * * * * * * * *
    Include links to other people that have displayed a photo, or include their photos in your post, adding a reference. Here are the others who have participated so far:


    Char at Essential Keystrokes

    Zep at The In-Sect
    Ingo at Stixster

    Stevie at Lost In Cyberspace


    Wendy Piersall at eMoms at Home





    Dave Olson at Live the GREAT life that you desire
    Greg at Become a Remote Control SEO


    Armen at iFFECT.NET




    Lisa Gates at intrinsic life design



    Adam Kayce at Monk at Work

    Tammy Lenski at I Can’t Say That!






    Steve at Ramblings from the Marginalized
    Troy Worman at on!blog
    Lilith at Lilith’s Owl Nest

    Revov at REVO-OVER


    Derrick Sorles at Life By Design
    Ken Xu at Mysites Advisor dot com

    Roberta at Roberta Ferguson


    Ingrid at Through My Eyes
    Don Lawson at Affiliate Watcher







    Faddy at Girl Next Door
    Thess at In Nederland

    Suzie at 1Day@ATime



    Skipper at My Life Starts At Forty-Two
    Seiche at Seiche
    Leah at Leah’s Cafe

    Josie at Josie Two Shoes
    Dr Ellen Webber at Brain Based Business
    Mika at Text Unlimited
    Nell at Tales of a Melodramatic Moron

    Pen at the pen is mightier than the sword

    Jamie at Terinea Weblog


    K at K, speaking!

    Chase at Queer Chef
    Hanne at Lucid Unreality
    Jill at Gelb9
    Tish at The Kat House

    Jessica at Life is RANTastic!

    Logtar at Logtar’s Blog
    Julie at TeacherJulie.com
    Wilson at Get it Funk

    Sue at Life in the Urban Zoo
    Isabelle at Tricotine

    Alternati at Sarcasm Aside
    Mousey at Sasha Says
    Diana at Nazarene Family Services

    Jen at Expat Travels
    Meeyauw at meeyauw

    Tammi at Drawing on Words
    Jams at The Poor Mouth
    Mar at maremagnum

    Karen Delaney at A Strange Life
    Lynnette at The Fun Times Guide

    Trish at Incoherent-ish
    Lisa at Lisa C Writes
    Becky at Becky’s Nook

    Dora at Peppylady
    Renny at RennyBA’s Terella

    Autumn at Autumn’s Meadow
    Jen at Jen’s Horde

    Sandy Carlson at Writing in Faith
    Captain Lifecruiser at Sea Lifecruiser
    Trinity at Rooms of My Heart

     

    Coons!

    June
    15
    2007

    Back in December one of my paintings, Coon, was published on the cover of the Journal of American Veterinary Medical Association, or JAVMA. I wrote about it here, if you want to have a look.

    The other day, I received a photo from one of my clients who purchased a large print of that painting after she saw it on the cover. It is just too cute not to share!

    Meet Rhonda, Flicka and Kismet. Aren’t they adorable? Rhonda gave me permission to show you her lovely self with her babies (thank you, Rhonda!) – and I have to admit, I love seeing photos of my artwork hanging up in their homes around their owners. That says to me “I look at this all the time, and still love it!” I love that. It’s way better than those photos of my artwork in the dumpster with ketchup splattered on the cracked glass. Those hurt, man. (j/k, that hasn’t happened. I swear.)

    Rhonda also shared this other photo of her babies, checking for bugs. They’ve grown a bit but aren’t they the cutest little guys? They look pretty darn thorough. She could charge for their services, really. I would hire them in a heartbeat.

    I get so mushy gushy when I get the privilege of sharing the love that my clients feel over their animals and pets. It’s a whole different level of love and compassion, I think. One that makes most people say “Huh? What do you care? It’s just a squirrel.” (I’m just sayin’, for example, you know.) It’s a special bond between human and animals that only other animal lovers can really understand. It’s such a cool thing.

    < -- This is where you pretend I've gone into a long emotional discourse about the relationship between people and critters, nod and think "yeah, I know exactly what you mean." -->

    Two Hundred : A Milestone

    January
    29
    2007

    certificate of authenticity original oil paintings leanne wildermuth On December 11, 2002, I printed my first Certificate of Authenticity. It belongs to Doc Shnurman, a monochromatic chalk portrait of my family physician. Although I had completed several paintings and portaits prior to that date, that was the first one that received official documentation and began my professional endeavor and record keeping. Today I printed #200. And it belongs to Elsie.

    I knew starting out that I wanted my work to be worth something – not just at the time of purchase, but to increase in value over time. I know that I’ll be dead when it happens, but I do want to make someone giddy with excitement when their appraisal from the folks on Antique Roadshow exceeds their expectations. I know. I’m wierd. But I want that. I want that for my clients, and I want that for my kids.

    I also wanted my work to be worth something emotionally. That’s a big deal, and that carries more weight than the financial gain to me – that’s what keeps me going.

    I haven’t done a CoA on every single painting – just on every one that has been sent off to a new home. So this isn’t a record of how many paintings I’ve completed, but how many people are in possession of an original work by yours truly. Two hundred.

    That’s an incredible figure to me, two hundred. That’s about 4 full years, about 50 a year. That my work has reached out and affected that many people enough to want to own it is overwhelming, really.

    I get to do what I love. I get to use the gifts that God blessed me with, and I’m humbled to know that what I do has meaning.

    To those of you who have allowed me and my artwork into your homes, thank you. From the bottom of my heart, it wouldn’t be two hundred without you.

    AVMA

    December
    15
    2006

    A few months ago I was contacted by AVMA, aka the American Veterinary Medical Association about my painting, Coon. Some of you may remember this painting I created back in 2004 for the Wildlife Center of Silicon Valley (California), it was auctioned off to the highest bidder to raise funds for their rehabilitation and release facilities. I was happy as a clam to find out it brought them a few hundred dollars, especially since this raccoon is one of their very own rescues.

    Now I’m thinking this must be good karma that the AVMA selected this painting as one they wanted to feature on the cover of the Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association this month.

    The American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA), established in 1863, is a not-for-profit association representing more than 74,000 veterinarians working in private and corporate practice, government, industry, academia, and uniformed services. (source)

    Of course, I am positively proud and absolutely flattered and humbled both that so many professionals will get a glimpse of my work, and perhaps catch a sense of my love for wildlife. There’s no better reward for me than this, really. Truly. It’s like being in a room of 74,000 who all have everything in common – especially since my “what do you want to be when you grow up” answer was always “A Veterinarian”. Now that didn’t happen, obviously, but I am doing what I’m meant to be doing, and it does involve animals. And for that I feel blessed, and grateful.

    I don’t ask for much – I just do what I love to do, and hope that people see that and remember what I’m representing when they’re looking at anything in nature – right down to the intricate veins of a Cecada.

    Today, I’m honored. I’m excited, I’m elated – I can’t even identify all of the feelings swirling around right now. This is just – in a word – cool.

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