Lisa Congdon and ‘The Joy of Swimming’
Fine artist, illustrator, and author Lisa Congdon works in many media, but her distinctive style is recognizable for its joyfulness and sincerity. In her latest book, The Joy of Swimming: A Celebration of Our Love for Getting in the Water, her enthusiasm for her work—and for the book’s subject matter—splashes off the page.
Lisa Congdon is known for winsome, colorful paintings, line drawings, and hand lettering, as well as for her popular books, such as Art, Inc.: The Essential Guide for Building Your Career as an Artist and Whatever You Are, Be a Good One.
Much of her work is inspiring and educational. And just on its own, the story of her creative career is also an inspiration: When she was 30 years old, Congdon was not an artist. That is, she hadn’t gone to art school, and she reckons that she hadn’t drawn or painted since childhood. She was working in public education when, at the age of 31, she took an art class—just for fun.
As a result of taking that class, however, she got hooked on creating art. She explains, “I started doing it all the time. And because I was drawing and painting almost every day, I got better and better at it. And because I got better and better at it, and because I was doing it every day, I eventually found my voice as an artist.”
And that’s how Congdon came to a place where she could turn her passion into what she did for a living.