From inside cover flap: Like beads on a mala, here are 108 contemplations to reconnect you with the richness and vitality of the present moment. As you experience each contemplation, the lotus ﬂower blossoms, reﬂecting the unfolding of your pure, joyful nature. Though stress and struggle may surround you, the journey to peace is an inner one; there is nothing to obtain outside your mind. May each Zen moment you experience bring you a step closer to real joy.
My contribution: I am honored to have contributed to this book in the form of illustrating 108 watercolor lotuses (a test of my patience and a meditation in itself) as well as page design in collaboration with designer David Vidri.
The Moments: The book is composed of 108 individually painted still frames of an animation sequence. If flipping through the book, the lotus slowly opens from bud to blossom. A metaphor for moments in a sequence of a lifetime, the book reminds us to focus on each moment as perfect in its position to create the full journey of life.
Description: Have you ever thanked your body for everything that it allows you to do? Follow along as Thank You, Meexpresses thanks to our bodies, and say thank you to your eyes, nose, mouth, ears, hands, and feet. Say thanks to your brain and your lungs. And last but not least, say thanks to your heart, because that is the place where the best thank you’s start.
What might start as a simple practice of gratitude for the body (encouraging healthy physical habits) can quickly grow into something bigger: a positive life-long mindset of valuing yourself enough to learn, grow, and achieve to your highest potential.
My contribution: Writing, illustration, design.
The Why: The idea for this book was inspired by my journey through self-acceptance and finding peace with my body image and inner critic. The journey started with an exploration of whether expressing gratitude for my body could help overcome negative self-talk, poor self-esteem, and eating disorders. The answer was yes—keeping a gratitude journal completely changed my perception of self, self-worth, and self-care. I encourage parents to share this concept with children at any age, because a healthy and balanced relationship with “self” is truly what brings inner peace and success in all areas of life.