I've spent the majority of my work history specializing in comic illustration and graphic design.
My style is generally influenced from the bande-desinées aesthetic, along with flavoring from anime (specifically the aesthetic from late 90's, early 00's) and western animation (specifically Disney). I generally stick to my personal brand of stylization, though I often diversify atmospheric approach and artistic direction to the property.
My skills are best utilized toward sequential artwork (i.e. comic work, novel insert-artwork, or other narrative-based visuals), concept and character design, and commercial promotional illustration. I also have experience as a digital colorist.
Additionally, I have experience in commercial graphic design, specifically pertaining to merch/product design and subsequent packaging, as well as promotional graphics and logo design.
FEES & AVAILABILITY
I am open for inquiries for illustration or design based projects. I am not available for comic-based work.
I don't accept work below $300 USD per job. I don't do well with projects needing fast turn-around or pinch-hitting work. I can more easily become available for a work if the inquiry is at least one month ahead of the expected production schedule.
For exact rates, please inquire me to the nature of your work to get a quote and scheduling availability.
I regularly freelance 1-on-1 art workshops in 3-month durations. The workshops are designed around weekly sessions, focused on the improvement of specific artistic goals requested by the client.
I design the workshop experience as something that can be dovetailed into my client's existing schedule, and provide structure and a tailored curriculum over 12 weeks to help my client see tangible improvement/results in their work, as well as provide tools to further develop their aims after the mentorship experience concludes.
Since the mentorship workshop is designed specifically to the client's goals and needs, it can cover a wide range of topics. Thus far, I've helped clients improve their skills in areas of aesthetic style, linework drafting, comic foundations, character designing, environmental building, and much more. I tailor the workshop experience to what the client wants to see develop in their work, rather than teaching how to do art.
On top of grounding the workshop in learning the desired skillset, I also specialize in elevating the quality of labor that goes into doing art. I help address obstacles such as weeding out unhealthy mental approaches toward creativity, healing/prevention of artistic burn-out, and improving the emotional relationship between artist and canvas. My goal as a teacher is to showcase how to prioritize and maintain emotional satisfaction as a consistent standard when doing art.
I've workshopped with clients of all levels of skill, from beginner level to the established professional. If you seek artistic improvement, I'll help you get you where you want to be.
FEES & AVAILABILITY
The weekly sessions consist of 12 total (averaging 3 months) over text messaging programs (Google Hangouts or Discord), with the rate of $200 USD per session, though open to sliding scale negotiation. Continuance for another 3-month duration optional.
If you're interested, please contact me for additional information and a free interview.
I am available for 2 new clients.
Please click on the quotes to expand the full review.
"In just a few months, she’s helped me grow more than I could ever have imagined and I couldn’t be happier about it." —A. Hotte
Let me start by saying I've been a fan of Jayd's work for many years. The opportunity to learn from her seemed like a once in a lifetime chance and I'm happy to say it's been the most rewarding learning experience I've had in a long time.
Before I go too far, I should mention I’ve been a mostly self-taught illustrator for a number of years now. I had weaknesses I struggled to tackle on my own and I had been wanting to try my hand at something new. This seemed like a perfect opportunity to do both so we ended up splitting the three months mentorship into three subjects: Composition for illustration and covers, environment design and comics 101.
She did so much more than merely giving me new information: With each subject, she guided me out of my comfort zone like a clairvoyant art wizard and into a brand new space of learning that blew my mind every time. She thoughtfully tailored her lessons and homework to my personal needs. She quickly noticed obstacles and knew how to approach them in a constructive way. The homework was relevant and the feedback sessions that followed were particularly great: They highlighted some issues I never noticed I had and allowed me to explore new art grounds under the supervision of an expert. Her notes and draw-overs illuminated previously unknown possibilities and opened new paths of understanding. Her earnest encouragement about the progress being made made it a positive experience throughout, even when the work got more difficult.
She knew what could realistically be done within a few sessions and she excelled at devising a plan that would help me in the long term. While homework did require dedicated time and effort every week, it was worth every second put into it. In fact, I've already used her teachings for work that I would have struggled with only a few months ago. In just a few months, she’s helped me grow more than I could ever have imagined and I couldn’t be happier about it.
Jayd is an amazing artist and storyteller with a real ability for teaching. Whether you’re looking to explore something new, expand your current knowledge or improve your work, I fully believe she would make a great mentor.
- A. Hotte
"tl;dr - THE mentoring workshop for those looking for that galaxy-brain levelling up of art skills. Would rec in a heartbeat." —Krad
tl;dr - THE mentoring workshop for those looking for that galaxy-brain levelling up of art skills. Would rec in a heartbeat.
For context of myself and what I was looking for: I went to Ringling College of Art and Design, had summer art classes at SCAD, and one or two private tutoring sessions a decade ago; am also now a working comics professional. I was specifically looking for a way to level up art skills - something more involved than a video, class (even Schoolisim quality), or a book. Jayd caught my eye as someone that had the rare combination of being phenomenally skilled and unquestionably professional (not to mention experienced). I will give a disclaimer that we knew each other decently well after running in the same comic circles for a few years; was familiar with her own output and general practical mindset regarding execution of drawing -- however that had no bearing on the mentorship other than knowing I was in good hands from the get-go.
The course itself is structured on 1-3 specific drawing areas you choose to improve in (and spans 3 months) -- the lectures/workshops are then tailored to the desired goal. Each "session" was either an interactive lecture (with reference photos, her bringing years of experienced insight into practically breaking down the issue into digestible chunks), or an interactive workshop (a mutual dialogue and/or redlining session that brought the same depth of insight and had the flexibility to pivot accordingly to the most pressing issue.) Homework was also involved every week with a review for the last week's homework at the beginning of every session.
Immediately, I noticed Jayd has a charmingly spooky way of zeroing on the actual root of whatever mental roadblock that exists -- not the symptoms that could mask the problem, and she also didn't just vaguely state the obvious like I've noted a lot of other artists/professors have a habit of doing (ie 'work on your fundamentals'). If the roadblock of your current proficiency and goal wasn't immediately spottable, there was always the custom homework exercises that would bring it to light within a week or so. Once when that root disconnect was known, she would surgically talk/draw you through what was needed for you to make that 'aha!' connection until you had in-fact, done so. Most often there was immediate night-and-day progress in the homework in the week after; and there was always significant progress seen from the beginning of each month to the end.
Jayd was also incredibly good-natured through the whole set of months; I was never once intimidated or disheartened by the feedback, but neither did I feel like she was being easy on me for the sake of niceness; something I'm always wary of. (In fact, she'll warn you up front that there will be weeks where your work may be red-lined to the edge of the earth and back; honestly those red-lined images are worth their metaphorical weight in gold as-is.)
Definitely reserve this for a span of months where you can dedicate a good 6 hours a week on the homework at minimum if not more; my one issue was struggling slightly with juggling a dayjob/freelance/commissions/weekly webcomic on top of this, though it reflects on my (lack) of planning than anywhere else.
Overall, the advice/mentorship given will be incredibly useful for years to come -- the kind that I've saved and printed out in a special notebook; not even *just* useful in the moment. Would continue it in a heartbeat if it weren't for temporary lack of time, and would recommend to intermediate-skilled artists looking for that something "extra". I am happy to answer specific questions at firstname.lastname@example.org .
"If you are dissatisfied with your art, Chira's lessons are *The* Investment for Yourself and Your Craft." —Cae
IT MIGHT SEEM LIKE I'M OVER-EXAGGERATING, waxing poetry over how much this mentorship has changed my life... but, I’m writing this testimonial to emphasize that this is exactly the case: if it wasn't for Chira, I don't think I would have gotten better at art as fast and sustainably as I have, and with a momentum I know will last beyond my time with her. If you are dissatisfied with your art, Chira's lessons are *The* Investment for Yourself and Your Craft.
To use myself as an example, I started this mentorship with incredibly low regard for my art -- I draw as a hobby and considered myself good in some respects, but bad in many more. I thought it was a matter of skill and that the resolution to these deficiencies was a matter of regimented practice and focused lesson work. I’d tried the former prior, have had lessons with other talented mentors... but, Chira differentiates herself as someone who is not only skilled, but perceptive and wise. Just three lessons in, she honed in on the root of my self-loathing, the nihilistic framework that defined my approach to art in itself. I admit, there were many unforeseen mental blocks in my case... but, answering Chira's questions forced me to answer to myself and therefore tackle these head-on.
Chira is tough because she 100% holds you personally responsible for your own improvement. But, she is also fair because she is committed to helping you learn to help yourself. I was wary it would have fallen into one extreme or the other -- but, Chira provides you exactly the feedback you deserve for the work you put in week after week. You end up feeling stronger and stronger after each lesson because of that.
Speaking of: the technical skills do come in a very Self-Apparent way because Chira creates lesson plans that *will* reveal your weaknesses and then presents exercises that addresses those weaknesses. There were many epiphanous moments during my entire course with her. It really felt as if I’d condensed several years of studying in a few short months. Chira is SO SO SO knowledgeable and provides such helpful resources it’s actually pretty uncanny, if I do say so myself. I improved my anatomy and artistic expressiveness, learned how to draw backgrounds, stage lighting and compositions, tackle different body types and character dynamics, and that’s only accounting for the big stuff... not the small (but crucial and personalized) tips in-between.
OVERALL, I started this feeling mediocre and dissociated... and ended this entire thing hopeful and excited with where I’ll go with my art. I cannot recommend Chira enough and would be happy to Continue My Bragging one-on-one.
"I was simply astounded at the progress I had made when I compared my work from the first week and the last. I felt growth as an artist that I haven’t felt for a long time." —Jessica
I’ve followed Jayd’s artistic career for many years, so I was very excited to be able to work with her!
For context, I’m your average Jane who dabbles in fanart and sketchblogs and all that. I have a degree in graphic design and have been working in the print industry for a few years, but my interests are mainly in illustration. I happened to be in something of a funk creatively, and having landed a job as an art director for an indie game proved to be the push I needed to take up this opportunity. This mentorship was just what I needed to help me feel re-energised and I found the experience extremely rewarding.
My chosen topics were anatomy, environments and object construction, which Jayd strung together into lessons, exercises and assignments that provided a natural progression between the subjects. She was frank but kind with the obstacles we encountered: when I was too nervous to work without references, she gently took away the crutches by assigning me tasks that used my imagination. And what fun those ended up being! That is just one example of Jayd providing me with an insight into many factors that go into my art - external and internal, good and bad - which will be very valuable for me from here on.
At the end of the three months, I was simply astounded at the progress I had made when I compared my work from the first week and the last. I felt growth as an artist that I haven’t felt for a long time. I feel it truly helps to work under an expert, and Jayd is nothing but constructive and thoughtful with her advice.
Overall, Jayd is flexible, capable of thinking-outside-the-box and open to dialogue in her approach to helping you, so don’t be afraid to voice any problems or concerns you might have. If you are prepared to commit time and energy into this mentorship, I know you will find the experience as valuable and worthwhile as I did.
"Jayd's even-handed but direct, empathetic, and perceptive approach made a huge difference for me." —Ash
I came to Jayd looking for help with moving past several roadblocks in my art study and abilities. I originally requested help with mechanical fixes, thinking my needs were based on building better habits and smoothing out certain concepts I felt I had missed in my schooling. However, it didn't take long for Jayd to discern that I needed something different. In the course of my two sessions (six months) of mentorship, we worked through finishing a project through from pitch to completion, and we specifically covered issues I was having with approaching my art to begin with, as I suffered from mental blocks that made it very difficult to proceed in creating how I wanted to.
Jayd's even-handed but direct, empathetic, and perceptive approach made a huge difference for me. With frank conversation about what was going on and gentle steps in a different direction, I was able to address several fundamental issues that I otherwise was unable to recognize or tackle without that guided support. I also have a roadmap for how I plan to move forward, using techniques and advice given through the time spent learning from her. I found that the work I put in was worth the effort, even with challenges I faced.
I encourage that whoever seeks out Jayd's help will listen earnestly and maintain an open perspective with what she brings to the table as a fellow creator, artist, and professional. She is punctual, reliable, reasonable, and communicative, and cares above all else about helping you reach the goals that you come to her for.
Every person looking for instruction will be seeking something unique. What I received may not be what someone else needs or seeks out, but if you are seriously interested in the time and investment of what private mentorship can bring, send Jayd an inquiry.
"I'm so glad I took the leap to take on this mentorship with Chira. I'm coming out of it feeling confident about my path forward!" —Binglin
This mentorship with Chira has been truly invaluable to me!!
For some background on where I'm coming from: I had the privilege of being able to attend art school, but I wasn't able to make the best use of my time there due to personal health crises. Eventually (2 years post-grad) I was ready to get back to tending my art, but I felt totally lost. I knew what needed to improve, but didn't know how to start.
I've had a long list of personal projects that have been indefinitely on the back burner because I always felt like I "wasn't ready" for them, but I'm so glad I took the leap to take on this mentorship with Chira. I'm coming out of it feeling confident about my path forward!
Everyone's got a different learning style, but I found the workshop to be super seamless and I experienced tangible improvement every single week. Lessons were straightforward and concise. My experience with Formal Art Instruction involved learning a lot of cut-and-dry rules, but no one ever told me WHY things worked the way they did. With Chira, week after week I learned, not necessarily brand-new information, but new ways of understanding that information in practical and accessible contexts so the knowledge could actually stick.
I HIGHLY recommend taking this on if you know it's time for you to expand your art-making horizons, but feel daunted by the task. Time-commitment-wise, I personally put in no more than 6 hours weekly (usually less!). I'd be happy to chat one-on-one with anyone who wants to know about my experience in more detail! email@example.com
"Overall, Jayd’s mentorship had a really unlocked the ability in me to just trust in myself and the process, and know how to adjust for obstacles along the way." —Linh
Jayd was recommended to me in extremely high regard by one of my good friends, so needless to say I already knew that I was going to be in good hands for this mentorship. What started as “I’ll aim for the moon and see where I’ll land” ended up as one of the most illuminating time I’ve ever had regarding my art and how I view my relationship with it.
Even though I’ve always enjoyed art and considered myself an artist, I had always been determined to make it a hobby – as I was mainly self taught, I did not have the confidence to look into applying to art schools, pursuing it as a freelancer, or making a livable business from it. I leaned hard onto the amateur label and, thus, never trusted myself regarding my own creations and art process. Art to me was always a lot of work to bring about the visions I have in my head, and I felt like I couldn’t draw without looking at a billion references – and even so, I would get tired out from gathering the references, crafting the sketches, figuring out what the blobs of my sketches were even about, and so on. I doubted myself every single step of the way, to a point that earlier this year, when art was such a mental load in my mind, I was deeply considering quitting art cold turkey – going on an art cleanse, so to speak. This was when my friend notified me that Jayd has a spot, and with a leap of faith, I signed up — and I can confidently say it was one of the most life changing decisions I have ever made.
From the get go and the very first interactions and exercises, Jayd has always shown herself as someone who was extremely sharp and observant, but also very fair. Jayd made sure that I knew what my strengths were, but she also never hesitated to tell me what I could work on. She accurately pinpointed me as someone who enjoyed drawing but didn’t have a lot of foundations, so she worked together with me to strengthen my foundations and make the creative process less about work. Sure, there was always work needed to be put in; Jayd made sure I understood that my creations should be intentional so they can be my best work at all times. But she gave me a lot of tool sets to really alleviate the work that I felt regarding the process of drawing. Four weeks in, I felt like such a breakthrough with art that even though I had long hours at my day job, I just couldn’t. Stop. Drawing. I felt such a rush with it because the process was so Easy now that I just had a lot of stamina to keep drawing and keep improving. Jayd’s encouragement and guidance were always the beacon of my weeks, and any time that I felt any doubt, I just looked back at her redlines and references that she had carefully crafted and instructed for me – they’re worth their weights in gold.
My original goal was wildly ambitious (I wanted to develop a visual development pitch, with characters and backgrounds and etc.), so Jayd and I worked together on particular topics that serve as good foundations for that goal going forward, which is anatomy, perspectives, and character interactions. Jayd was very skillful in noting my strengths and weaknesses every week, and strung the lessons together in a natural progression that I felt like I could keep going forward. Whenever I had doubts, Jayd was always wise with her advice. One week, I had a lot of difficulty with anatomy and found some random advice online about how I should slow down and actually study each part of the body from the heads up – an approach that was in direct contrast to Jayd’s recommended approach for me, which was to just focus on making my gestures be drawn in under two minutes; if I couldn’t achieve that, then I would start over. I definitely felt like I worked better under time constraints, and had doubts about the random advice, but I decided to listen to Jayd and followed what we did together. When I brought this up, Jayd very kindly but frankly made me understand that I should listen to my guts and our customized approach (I had such a great time just focusing on our approach that we worked together, rather than some random person’s online!) This is just one example of Jayd providing great insights and mentorship for my doubts and process regarding my art, which is extremely valuable for me and my art from here on. I’ve always found Jayd extremely kind but also very even-handed; she made sure I knew my improvements even if I couldn’t see it easy for myself (with self-doubt and all), but also made sure I understood what I could work on going forward. Her enthusiasm about my own progress made me feel more sure about myself, and every week I was armed with new knowledge that just made art more enjoyable and fun.
Overall, Jayd’s mentorship had a really unlocked the ability in me to just trust in myself and the process, and know how to adjust for obstacles along the way. The most valuable thing I set out as a goal – and Jayd had absolutely helped deliver it – is to gain a sense of comfort in drawing: drawing now feels like a haven instead of Work that I felt like I have to put into. With the foundations we’ve built together, I’m a lot more comfortable going forward and continuing to work on my skills. I’d love to continue working with Jayd had it not been for time constraints with commitments on my part, but it was a huge pleasure working with Jayd. This mentorship unlocked and greased my creative gears, and I feel brimmed with projects and ideas. Would definitely recommend this in a heartbeat – thank you for everything, Jayd!
"My happiness was always important at every point during the mentorship, because Jayd’s goal WAS to make me feel happier with my art." —Julia
Honestly, I don’t think I could possibly over-sell Jayd’s mentorship workshop! The strides I made while working with her were HUGE, and while I definitely still feel like I have a long ways to go, I feel that I was left with the skills and the mindset to see myself to even greater heights with my art.
For some background context, I am mostly self taught, with some failed attempts at schooling in art and a lot of struggles with self-study--due in large part to issues with self esteem and perfectionism. My goal going into the mentorship was mostly to work on technical skills, but I found that instead, a good portion of our weekly sessions were devoted to really enlightening talks about these issues I was struggling with. Sometimes, things I wasn’t even aware of! There were at least a few critique sessions that started off with Jayd saying something like “I get the impression that…” or "it seems to me like..." about my approach to working on an assignment, and I would just have this moment of clarity, where suddenly the pieces fall together and I understand why I struggled with something, or what I’m not tackling effectively. She has this weird ability to just sort of know, just by looking at your work, your emotional/mental state while you made it, and that was probably equal parts terrifying and fascinating to experience every week.
What struck me most about my mentorship with Jayd though, was how much she genuinely cared for my progress, my view of my own work, and my work itself. She always made sure that her assignments were fair, and that they were never more than I felt I could handle. If I felt frustrated with an assignment, she was always happy to offer me an alternative. If I felt frustrated with my work, she somehow, magically, was always ready with the perfect flavor of encouragement, insight, or critique that I needed to hear. My happiness was always important at every point during the mentorship, because Jayd’s goal WAS to make me feel happier with my art. And I definitely am MUCH happier with my art than when I started!
Really, my only regret is that I can’t do another course right away, because this is definitely something I would happily do again many times over. Jayd’s (immense) technical knowledge and experience aside, the way she teaches and relates to her clients make her mentorships so productive and enlightening in a way that I just can’t imagine getting from any other source. The progress I made under her guidance each week was absolutely insane, and I feel very confident that I’ll continue to progress with what I’ve learned. If you’re looking to improve any aspect of your work, I really can’t recommend a better investment for yourself!
"I would definitely recommend Jayd's mentorship whether you’re starting out or if you’re a veteran who’s been stuck in the dumps like me. " —Jackie
Working with Jayd was a really phenomenal experience. Since I’ve known her for a long time, I already had a sense of what it might be like but despite our long history as friends, she didn’t pull any punches when it came to the development of my art and my own development as an artist.
I had once been very ambitious and determined. I had a webcomic. I did conventions, illustrations, commissions, the whole she-bang. But the past few years had me waffling on and off about art and whether I had wanted to pursue it seriously again after all the personal turmoil I had doing it the first time. Jayd not only helped me with the things I asked her to but she helped me dissect and evaluate my process and how I’ve been approaching my art and why I might be running into these roadblocks so frequently. I think that’s what made the experience really invaluable to me.
It’s one thing to acknowledge your faults but it’s another to be given the perspective from someone who’s been there and done it before. While her guidance through healthy practices and fantastic red-lining were very helpful, it was her encouragement to draw to my heart’s desire within a safe space and support throughout the process that helped build my confidence in order to draw regularly again. And enjoy it too!
I think after spending a few years in the industry, you start to get jaded and Jayd’s positivity, insight and advice has been incredibly instrumental to overcoming my artist fatigue, on top of all the technical roadblocks I’ve developed along the way.
Over the expanse of the course, I never once felt pressure to overextend myself. In fact, I got so pumped during this course, I was doing work ahead of time because I hadn’t been so excited to work on something in such a long time!
Jayd cares a lot about your growth and it reflects in her teaching methods by being curious about you and where you’re standing with your work. She lets you know what you need to work on in a very constructive way and breaks down the fundamentals of things you might already know but had no idea why people did it. Also, she is a genuinely delightful person and makes it known that she is your biggest cheerleader.
I would definitely recommend Jayd's mentorship whether you’re starting out or if you’re a veteran who’s been stuck in the dumps like me. She’s a great teacher who answers all your questions, holds you accountable for your work, yet she’s understanding and lenient when need be. It’s a few weeks of training wheels and it was a really critical and amazing experience for me so I encourage anyone who's stuck or curious to send an inquiry and see for yourself what an easy and low-pressure environment Jayd provides.
"10/10 would recommend over something like udemy, skillshare, etc. Really insightful advice every week, and homework assignments that were really genuinely challenging." —Walther
OKAAAY... testimonial... for chira's mentorship!!
Okay let me start off by saying I'm HISTORICALLY an awful student. Throughout high school and college, I always turned in work late, last minute, or not at all. REALLY. I went to summer school twice, failed rudimentary classes specifically because I didn't turn work in, retook many classes in college, too. Somehow I still managed to graduate, but this is to add context to the fact that I did not miss a SINGLE assignment for Chira's mentorship. I even turned most of them in EARLY! That's pretty monumental for me!!! That's a big deal and I think reflects how Chira understands client needs and so on and so forth.
Chira was great at getting me to where I needed to be week to week. Very encouraging while also offering super solid advice with clear explanations on how to improve! I've taken a lot of non-traditional art classes and have found that the critique has always been a bit too weak for me. Chira's critique is like a strong cup of black coffee; I'd pay for it regularly if I could. Plus, the one-on-one attention is great for someone like me who is easily distracted. AND the fact that it's over text is convenient for someone who is 1. busy with a job and 2. has social anxiety. I was really nervous with the interview process, but I felt very understood throughout the mentorship, and there was always room for me to ask questions or change schedule when things came up in my life.
Overall, 10/10 would recommend over something like udemy, skillshare, etc. Really insightful advice every week, and homework assignments that were really genuinely challenging.
"Every single insightful session and personal revelation borne from her lessons always led to the same resounding thought: this was so, so worth it." —Gladyfaith
After years of struggling with self doubt, my experience with Jayd’s mentorship has been invaluable and life-changing in my journey as an artist. For anyone who is on the fence -- every single insightful session and personal revelation borne from her lessons always led to the same resounding thought: this was so, so worth it.
Some background on me: I went to a local state university to study illustration, and after a long-winding, meandering path, I finally found employment as a full-time artist in the animation industry. I was one of those types who’d constantly battled with imposter syndrome and always felt like I was miles behind my peers. Everything seemed so much harder for me to grasp and I would feel like I was constantly drowning to keep up. With every line I drew came an inner mental judgment berating me for my failings and of not being good enough. It came to a point where it felt like I’d hit a mental block in improvement and completely stopped drawing for myself because it no longer felt joyful. I went through many different avenues and classes in an attempt to help shake me out of this mental sludge, but nothing seemed to be working; I felt lost in a hazy fog with no way out.
That’s when I found out Jayd was offering a mentorship workshop. I remembered the depth that she would answer others’ questions when they came to her for advice on social media. She’d give stellar technical instruction, but also and more importantly, I recalled her empathetic and perceptive approach that was unique to her. Even just after sending her some inquiries about her workshop through email correspondence and after going through her initial free interview, I could already feel the kindling of a small inner fire that came from her astute observations.
Before I comment on the contents of the lessons, a critical aspect that made her mentorship work well for me was the flexibility of the homework load and the option to move class dates. Due to my full time job and regular heavy deadlines, I would struggle in other classes to keep up with the homework. With Jayd, there was a fluidity that made it possible to balance my day job without falling behind in my homework assignments. If I anticipated a heavy week and communicated that ahead of time, she would offer the option of reducing the homework load or moving our next lesson without penalty. She was very considerate of preventing overload or burnout, and prioritized crafting an experience that would be the most beneficial and manageable to me as the mentee.
As for the lessons themselves: I worked with Jayd for twenty-four mentorship sessions over about six months. Combined, the topics we covered were environments, draftsmanship and expressions, composition, visual sequential storytelling with emotional subtext, and gestures with a focus on emotional resonance. She was very flexible with her lessons, and would also pivot according to my needs whenever we discovered an area that I especially struggled with. She was also amazing at crafting a curriculum that helped me maintain a momentum so that I would see visible, concrete improvements not just in my homework or personal art, but also in my professional work. I am happy to say that after feeling stuck for so long, my art finally feels far more full of life, vitality, and emotional resonance after working under Jayd’s careful guidance.
The format of the lessons consisted of a combination of chat-based lectures and critiques, occasional screen-shared art demonstrations, and homework sheets with her drafted draw-overs and incredibly detailed notes. I’d never realized it before this workshop, but this format was perfect for the kind of student that I am and how I retain information. Jayd is extremely thorough in her responses and her notes, and to have them available to review in the years to come is priceless to me.
If I could summarize this whole thing into one sentence, it would be this: Jayd is an incredible, one-of-a-kind mentor. I could really tell just how much she cared about me as a mentee in her approach to helping me achieve my goals. She found ways to construct lessons that helped me tackle my weak points, and somehow always found a way to make it fun. That aspect was motivating when it came to completing the homework, and made things that I’d usually find difficult a lot easier to approach. And she is such a well of vast knowledge! Her gift in storytelling is no fluke -- every component in her work has a specific intention and choice behind it, and as a mentor, she helped me reflect more deeply on my own artistic intentions and finding ways to pour that intention into the direction of my work. Through her guided questions, responses, and assignments, I could feel my own observation skills improving dramatically.
And Jayd’s perceptive ability towards understanding her students and extracting what they truly need is unrivalled; she could pinpoint exactly where and why I was struggling. She was not only good at highlighting how to improve my technical skill -- she also consistently recognized the psychological roots of my problems just by observing the details of the homework I turned in and by extracting the subtext in how I phrased my struggles. As others have mentioned, she would instantly know how to put a name to my mental blocks that I had long been unable to understand on my own (like an “art therapist”, as I would fondly put it). There were so many “Aha!” moments week by week; I finally felt understood. She not only revealed to me the source of my mental blocks, but gave me solutions that actually consistently worked -- solutions that I hadn’t found anywhere else or on my own in the better part of decade.
She also helped me build up my mental confidence; I started out demotivated, depressed with my work, and overly self-critical, and I came out not only feeling stronger in my technical skill, but also embracing what is unique and magical to me as an artist. The undercurrent of the entire mentorship was her helping me find a way to enjoy art again on my own terms. The difference in mental clarity is phenomenal -- I’ve felt growth that I haven’t felt in years. I feel empowered to continue my artistic journey and I now have a clear vision in how to move forward thanks to the tools she’s given me over the past half year. Along with my renewed enthusiasm, she also taught me how to reflect more profoundly about what I wanted to say as a storyteller and illuminated ways to convey the heart of that vision. I cannot stress this enough -- the quality of the uniquely designed one-on-one instruction that I received and how it was tailored Just For Me was phenomenal. This mentorship was good not only for the betterment of my skill, but also for my Soul. I came out of this feeling healed... and I’m finally drawing for myself again.
For those who have also felt disheartened with their art and seek that gentle but firm guidance to find their way, I would wholeheartedly recommend this mentorship. Jayd fostered in me the confidence to trust in my own artistic choices and the illuminating direction to hone in on my personal storytelling voice, empowering me to love my art again.
"I finally feel grounded in my art: I have building blocks, tools, and a real process. It's honestly changed my life for the better!!" —Serafina
I came to Jayd's mentorship with a rocky educational history. I always felt like I learned poorly from others; I was a solitary student, the type to do research for personal enjoyment but who internally dreads lectures and homework, so even though I excelled in schooling, it made me miserable. But I knew I benefited from one-on-one tutoring, and being familiar with Jayd and her work I was confident in her skills as a teacher, so I came to this wanting to improve in several technical and conceptual areas.
My twelve weeks with Jayd fundamentally changed how I work and learn for the better. Through the course of the mentorship, she helped me recognize a number of cognitive and emotional roadblocks that prevented me from progressing far more than any lack of knowledge did. Jayd has a vast trove of knowledge she can share with you, and she happily will, but the real treasure of this mentorship is her unique way of keeping you honest to your own standards. Jayd challenged me like no one else, but her compassion and skill in communication kept the focus on how I relate to my own work. It made me realize how much I got in my own way, stifled by fear of looking stupid or just self-destructive frustration. It was a hard pill to swallow, but Jayd was always there to keep me from getting down in the dumps on myself and gently remind me the point is not to look smart, it's to learn. Learning is messy, and you gotta let yourself make the mess so you can get to the other side and clean it up.
Beyond that, Jayd is incredibly encouraging and fun to learn from. Her approach is totally free of any kind of artistic prejudice: she never tried to control my artistic expression or judge it, she framed critique solely on how I control my own artistry and how we could improve that process. Red-lined homework was never a personal attack on what I liked to draw, and that made every lesson easier and more enjoyable to learn. Jayd's lessons gave me an incredible foundation in the practical, methodical work of creating. I finally feel grounded in my art: I have building blocks, tools, and a real process. It's honestly changed my life for the better!! Things that were distressingly hard, confusing, or intimidating feel manageable with trial and error, and I feel renewed with a sense of confidence and creative curiosity. I'm so excited to work on my personal art projects with the skills I've learned! I also honestly feel like this cracked the case of learning from other people for me, and that itself has already opened doors for me. I can't thank Jayd enough for being both a great teacher and a kind voice in my journey!
If you feel lost about how to improve or like you keep hitting a brick wall, take this workshop. If you feel burnt out and down on yourself about how your work turns out, take this workshop. You'll learn the skills to create what you want to see in the world and not destroy yourself in the process.
"Despite having drawn for my whole life, I felt like I built an entire new foundation for my art through the course of this mentorship." —Momo F. Black
For a long time I had wanted to improve my art but had been shy of mentorships or lessons where I would have to reveal just how little I knew. Being entirely self taught, I was painfully aware of gaps in my knowledge but wasn't sure how to articulate them, and I was worried about embarrassing myself due to my lack of ability.
These worries were completely unnecessary with Jayd's mentorship. She reassured me that this was about my learning and growth, not about judging me for where I was in the process of learning.
Over the course of twelve weeks, we addressed perspective, anatomy, composition, and color theory. Despite having drawn for my whole life, I felt like I built an entire new foundation for my art through the course of this mentorship.
The homework was exactly enough to be challenging and support consistent, sustained growth without being overwhelming. In our review sessions, Jayd always listened to my concerns and questions and addressed them directly, as well as pointing out problems that I hadn't been aware of. She was perceptive, communicated clearly, and creative in finding ways to help me overcome obstacles I faced. Because the lessons were tailored to address my specific needs, I learned much faster than I had before.
Perhaps most valuable was how this mentorship changed my perspective on studying art. I had been at a plateau for a while and worried that maybe I just hadn't been born with the right "artistic sensibilities." This mentorship gave me confidence in the fact that art is a skill that can be learned like any other, while also giving me the tools and direction to learn it.
This was an extremely rewarding investment in myself and in my art study, and I would highly recommend it to any artist looking to improve.
- Momo F. Black
One of my hobbies has been my active interest in western zodiac and tarot. I've been researching astrology since I was a child (single-digit age) and regularly explore tarot. As an adult I found it a very fun exploration for self-reflection or creative purposes. I specialize in western astrology, specifically in regards to reading natal birth charts, but adept at tarot card readings as well (I have 20+ tarot and oracle decks, and counting).
I offer readings as a means for a fun, intuitive outside perspective for those curious about exploring this kind of esoteric interest, but only so far it remains understood my readings are for entertainment purposes only, and not meant to be a substitute for any professional or legal counselling.
Additionally, I offer consultation on explaining the symbolism and mythology behind astrology and tarot for creative purposes -- such as research for an artistic project or working out astrology sign placements for your story's characters. Feel free to contact me with consultation inquiries if you have questions.