Embarking on an Adventure

I'm starting something new -- a big project. Want to hear about it? Sure you do.



The Journey

I’m embarking on a new journey, an emotional one that means the world to me — giving back to my mom who has given me so much. My 86 year old mom, Marilyn Van Wagoner is quite the storyteller, and my older sister, Kara Hunt (also an artist ) found some of her stories and asked if I'd like to do something with them. Why, yes I would. I can't think of a better way to show my mom my thanks and appreciation for her continued support throughout my life.

My Mom and Me

My mom is an inspiration to me and is the most selfless person I know. She has always encouraged me to follow my dreams and my passions, including teaching me to draw horses while sitting in church when I was a squirmy kid. She supported me no matter what I did, and I’ve put her through a lot. She has been my rock, my role-model. My hero.






The Dedication

While all the stories were fun, one of them really spoke to me, Eensy, Teensy Teddy Bear’s Adventure. And so, I decided to illustrate this story. This paragraph that came with the stories was the final push that inspired me to dive into the adventure. This illustration will be the dedication page leading into the story.

Story Time Dedication by Marilyn Van Wagoner, art by Traci Van Wagoner

My Goal

I want to share this journey with all my fans and have them become part of the process. Therefore, I’m creating a playground of sorts for us to share ideas, sketches, videos and other fun stuff on the journey from sketch to printed book on Patreon.

I’ve thought about setting up a Patreon page off and over for a couple years, and now I have a project that feels right for launching such a venture. For the rest of the year I’ll be sharing the journey of creating a picture book from sketch to final printed book— just in time for the holidays.


What and Why

I’m starting out with the basic plan and we’ll see how it goes. I'll be sharing sketches, behind the scenes stuff, full timelapse process videos, and other ideas that come up along the way. We’ll be able to chat, share ideas along the way, you’ll get voting privileges on choosing characters, colors and cover designs, perhaps a coloring page or two, and we’ll go on this adventure together with Willie the Eensy, Teensy Teddy Bear as I make the book a reality.


Supporting me on Patreon means that you’ll be helping me be able to focus on this personal project, giving me more time to create and share my art and experiences with you, my amazing online support and community. Your patronage will also help cover the costs of getting the book printed.


How Patreon works

You will be able to choose how much you want to pledge and this is as little as $3. You can come and go at any time. I hope you’ll join me and stick around for my ongoing creative journey, as it looks like this is what I’m doing for the rest of my life, creating art that makes people smile, think, be kinder and happier.


A Sneak Peek

Check out this video which shows a peek at the fun things you get to see on this adventure.


Don't Worry

I’ll still be sharing bit and pieces of the journey here and on my social media. And you have a few days to decide -- in which I'll be sharing more teasers on my different social media. Find links at the top of my website.


If you want the full picture you’ll want to become a patron. My patreon page, Traci VW Creations, will launch on Monday, July 1st. I hope you will decide to join me. I will share a link here and on social media as soon as it goes live. I look forward to sharing this journey of Teddy Bear's Adventure with you.


And Talking of Teddy Bears

Blue Bear is my -- our mascot, and I must thank my honey, Kurt Keller, for bringing his childhood stuffed bear along for our journey. Blue Bear has become an integral part of our creative endeavors and particularly in our children’s book world. In addition to seeing him in my header, you can find Blue Bear in every book I / we’ve illustrated. So, this teddy bear story has another level of meaning to me.

Kurt and Blue Bear are helping me get to work

Share with Me

Do you have a favorite teddy bear or stuffed animal? I'd love to hear your story and see pictures or drawings if you've got them. Thank you for your support. It means the world to me!


Live. Laugh. Learn.

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