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Welcome to the thirty-first issue of The Featured Image newsletter, a place where writing meets art. As a reminder, the goal here is to add visual creativity to our work and gain inspiration from those already doing it.
 
 
Creator highlight: Wendy MacNaughton
Wendy MacNaughton is a prolific illustrator who combines words and art in all sorts of creative ways. She’s written/illustrated her own books, as well as illustrated others’ books like a scratch and sniff guide to becoming a wine expert and the famous cookbook, Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat

I particularly like her illustrated columns, like this one she did for The New York Times about the mega trend of the 16oz craft beer can.
Drawing by Wendy MacNaughton for this article. 
MacNaughton has an interesting approach called illustrated journalism which you can read about in this interview for Communication Arts. She also answers how she got into drawing and writing, which is perfect for our purposes here!

I'll end this with a perfect quote from the interview:

“There hasn’t been a better time to be an illustrator since before the camera was invented. The definition of illustration has become so wide, the mediums so limitless and the platforms so varied.”
Even though I was vaguely aware of Wendy MacNaughton, the real reason I wanted to write about her is because of her new drawing podcast that my friend Ashley sent my way. 

Podcasts excel at many things, but learning or practicing a technical skill is not one of the things I would normally put on the list. Checking out MacNaughton’s new drawing podcast has completely changed my mind on this and I encourage everyone reading this to check it out (they are only a few minutes!). For now it is living within her Substack newsletter.

If I was pointing someone in the direction of where to learn to draw, YouTube would be a top choice all day long. You can learn literally anything on there. 

But I’m now aware of a very real disadvantage video tutorials (or any visual tutorial) have on creative endeavors. 

Seeing the end results on screen takes away the creative freedom of enjoying yourself. Seeing someone else do something or trying to copy someone’s style in a step-by-step process can be helpful in learning, but doesn’t feel very creative.

I was surprised at how fun it was to follow simple audio prompts. Not being able to see what her version looks like was a revelation I hadn’t really experienced along my journey of learning to draw.

There are only three episodes so far and each one is only a few minutes, but they are a great way to get into the creative spirit and to get the hand to paper. 

Just hit play on the first episode with a piece of paper and pen/pencil. 

I did all three with my kids and we can’t wait for more. It’s great fun for any age.

I'm also now thinking there should be more podcasts that involve tutorial style learnings for all sorts of things (and more for drawing for sure). I think the fears of it not being the "right" medium are probably overblown in many cases.
 
Turn on images to see.
We all had our own pages, but my daughter took my "dandelion" and stole it to make it her own. 
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Ok, that's it for this week. Be sure to create something cool and share it with someone.

Erik 
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