On July 4th, 2016 at 4:30 AM, my granddaughter Lyla May Hochstin was born. I was very excited to meet her.
She was born on the 4th of July!
Sean, Chase & Lyla in the hospital.
Here she is bonding with Mommy.
Lyla was what inspired me to paint a series of watercolor paintings of baby animals to frame and hang in her nursery. Soft pastels, creams, beiges, peaches, pinks and grays were my color palette. I wanted to paint something for her that she could enjoy for years. Children are fascinated by animals, and since that is my specialty, it was the perfect subject matter.
I love to paint realistically, so I worked from actual photos of baby animals, adding my own touch of personality and charm to them, as well as whimsical clothing. I enjoyed it so much that I painted every sweet little fuzzy baby animal that I could possibly think of – from a baby elephant and baby tiger, to a baby duck, and baby pig! I literally could not stop because each one was more fun to paint than the next.
Here is the finished nursery awaiting the baby’s arrival with six of the framed watercolors. I love the soft colors and how it turned out!
I received such a positive response from everyone on my artwork that I decided to bring the watercolors to the publisher’s Penguin/Random House. It turns out they are going to publish a children’s book using them as the characters. I am not positive of the final title, but I call it Hello Baby Animals.
I am so excited that something I created out of the love I felt for my future granddaughter would result in a book. It shows you that when you are using your passion for something from your heart, it comes through in your work. It never felt forced, there was just the pure joy of creating and I lost all sense of time as I worked.
I really hope my book brings joy to lots of toddlers and their parents as they watch their child meet each baby animal for the first time!
Here is Lyla, her first week at home in her little nursery in Brooklyn….
..amongst her baby animal friends..
and she is just as adorable and sweet as can be!
I cannot wait to read “Hello Baby Animals” to her!