WOW ….that’s ME! This magazine arrived today! – Williamsburg’s NEXT DOOR NEIGHBORS, focusing on the Arts this issue, included a story about me (written by editor Greg Lilly) and my road to having an agency in the children’s book industry! I knew it was coming but not when. I’d been interviewed (didn’t realize so MUCH of my past would end up in the article!) and then photographed by photographer Corey Miller (it was his idea to surround me with some of our books in my dinning room….I just love it! it feels like me!) But seeing it actually in this well done magazine is humbling and thrilling!
The title might surprise some. I’ve had a great, lucky and full life, but I also had one BIG life disappointment that this is referring to. Being an oil painter caused me to develope severe chronic asthma and put an end to my life dream to be a gallery oil painter, just beginning to happen finally after three children. My youngest child was 3 or 4 when I was told I could no longer EVER paint with oil again. But dealing with that fact lead me eventually to this wonderful, friendly, creatively alive industry, and perhaps a more purposeful and happily contributing life! Funny how life works.
I’ve actually found myself telling my story a few times when I talk to groups of artists looking to get into this industry. It can be very challenging of course and artists get discouraged. My story can be rather motivational I suddenly realized. By persevering, being patient, putting one foot in front of the other, and being open to taking advantage of opportunities, I traveled a road that brought me finally, over 25 years ago, to Children’s Publishing and the wonderful art produced for it. I now feel, oddly perhaps, that asthma was a ‘gift’. It shut one door, but then another opened that I feel deep down gave me, and my family, so much more than my fine art career might have. As many of you know…. almost 15 years ago I trained my new daughter in law, Nicole Tugeau,to be an agent as well (Tugeau 2!) I repped my talented son Jeremy Tugeau for many years, and he’s now repped by Nicole. AND he is a gallery oil painter! and has a MFA and teaches art full-time now. Three years ago my youngest, and daughter, Christy Tugeau Ewers joined me as partner in our CATugeau Agency which allows us to grow and go on into the future with her many talents put to great use!
So ‘adversity’- those doors that close to us during any life – can actually lead us to a more gratifying, long reaching, life altering path that is JUST RIGHT for us and others! We have to be open to it. We have to allow the change and the challenge to act out. There is opportunity in adversity… in every life. GRAB FOR IT!