My Bringing Up Baby series focuses on my day to day life right now with my three-year-old daughter. I'm doing it as a 100 day project (one black monochromatic watercolor painting each day) and am almost halfway through. I've been wanting to chronicle this particular time in our lives because it feels like such a brief moment; a moment that I want to always remember and that my daughter will love looking back on. It's my version of a journal. So many tiny things happen in our days right now, some hilarious, some heartwarming, some sad, and some that are completely unique to us and our relationship. For me, it started out as just that: painting scenes and stories that I thought were completely us and no one else, but I've found out, through comments on my series, that a lot of my story is actually a universal one. I love that. I love feeling connected to other mothers in that way.
I do one painting a day, which often seems like a lot, coupled with my other freelance work, but I so look forward to painting it each day. This series has so much meaning to me personally and so far has taught me so much about who I am as a mother and who I want to be. And in an artistic sense, working this quickly, with such a strict deadline each day, has taught me how to trust myself so much more, how to work within very limited boundaries, and how to very simply tell a story.
Brooke Smart is an illustrator based in Sandy, Utah, where she spends her days gathering ideas for stories and her nights telling those stories with her pen and paintbrush, inspired by her daughter, the wildest and most creative three-year-old in the world. She earned a BFA in Illustration from Brigham Young University in 2007.
Brooke recently won an honorable mention in the 2016 SCBWI Portfolio Showcase in NYC. She is currently working on her first picture book.