An ad for Elizabeth.

In an earlier blog I said the best thing in my college portfolio was a talking baked bean. Why a talking baked bean? Because the only thing I could draw with any accuracy was an oval.

Draw an oval. Add stick legs and stick arms. Add eyes and a mouth. Color the oval brown. And there you have it. A talking baked bean. (I know. Not exactly a Bob Ross moment, is it?)

For a brief time I considered becoming an art director. But in a flash of clarity it hit me. There aren’t that many clients out there whose products are shaped like an oval.

The point is, as a writer, I am in awe of anyone who can draw, which brings me to my daughter, Elizabeth.

Before she graduated from MICA and then went on to work in New York, Elizabeth often stayed at my apartment in Richmond. She always brought with her a small sketch pad and a pencil.

One Saturday I asked her what she was drawing. As in typical father-daughter communication, her one-word response was, “Nothing.” As in typical father-daughter interaction, I went back to watching football.

Before the end of the day, my curiosity got the best of me, and I asked again to see her sketch pad. This time she reluctantly handed it to me.

What I saw blew me away. On each page she had drawn in pencil one character. Each character looked as if it had come from the same, distant planet. At the same time, each character looked different, each with its own personality and backstory. As I said, she had drawn one character per page. In one afternoon of football, she had filled 50 pages.

It didn’t seem like a big deal to Elizabeth. For someone who can only draw ovals, I felt like a new Marvel franchise was unfolding before me. Hyperbole aside, I could plainly see Elizabeth had skills.

Five years later, Elizabeth is back in Richmond and looking for opportunities, full-time or freelance. Here’s her website.

If you like what you see I ask only one favor. The fact that she’s my daughter? Please, don’t hold that against her.

Oh, and as long as you’re here, if you’re a company whose product just happens to be shaped like an oval, maybe we should talk.

Published by bassetts49

50 years in advertising, 20 years as the creative lead on Geico. A life in creative thinking.

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