Hi! I’m Christine Nishiyama, an illustrator, writer, and founder of Might Could Studios. I’ve taught 115,000+ students in my online classes, written 100+ essays on creativity through my email list, traditionally published 4 books in the Layla and the Bots graphic novel series with Scholastic, and self-published 1 picture book, We Are Fungi. I am currently sharing the process behind my next book here in this Substack.

I’ve been sending out email essays since 2017 and this newsletter has grown over the years to over 10,000 subscribers—I’d love to have you here too!

What’s Inside I Might Could Do That!

I write, draw, and talk about art and creativity through three different pillars. I aim to send one essay or book process post every week, rotating between the two as I wish. Free subscribers get 50% of my writings, while paid subscribers get 100%.

Here’s what’s up:

  • 🎨 Might Could Essays: Essay content varies, but it all revolves around how to live as an artist, mom, and human being. Current series: The Art of Wisdom.

  • 📚 Might Could Make a Book: Sharing the process behind making my in-progress book. Current book: We Are Jellyfish. About to start: Making Picture Books based on my online courses on writing and illustrating PBs.

  • ✏️ Might Could Draw Today: Might Could Draw Today (MCDT) is an initiative aimed to gently encourage us to make time for drawing, within a supportive and uplifting environment of artists from around the world. A new theme is posted by me or friends in our Substack Chat every Monday!

How Paid Subscriptions Work

Paid subscriptions cost $5/month or $50/year. Paid subscribers receive everything I write and help support my work as an artist. In addition to all upcoming posts, paid subscribers also get instant access to the entire Essay Archive with over 100+ essays on creativity and artmaking. You also get the ability to post threads (instead of just replies) in the Substack Chat.

In early 2022 I quit Instagram, the last remaining social media account I had. I now primarily use this Substack as the home for sharing my art and process, connecting with other artists, and making a living. I shifted to a paid newsletter so I can focus my time and energy on writing and creating value, rather than on marketing and empty social media interactions. Your subscription directly funds my art and helps me keep writing these newsletters.

What Readers Are Saying

“…you've said and wrote about THE things I'm in so need to hear and finally understand. That's why I'm so grateful to you. I always read you in the morning, at my office (I work in a hospital) and when I read you I want to go out and draw!! You're speaking to my heart and mind so directly, that you're helping me so much. So I just wanted to take a minute to write these lines and saying thank you again! Looking forward to hearing of you always from now on!! –Dolores M.

"Just gotta say... I just signed up a few days ago and sat down while waiting on my 15 year old to get out of school and read this. I now have tears streaming down my face and felt more reading this than I have felt period in a long time! Great essay! Will have me reflecting rest of today if not rest of the week!" –Megan R.

“I love the way you tap into the mind and emotion, and connect it with art and the whole creative process. It just all makes so much sense.” –Aryln R.

“Christine, I love reading your essays! Thank you for sharing your wisdom. They always make me feel better and I'm becoming way less judgmental about my art. You're the best! Thanks again.” –April R.

“I have cried after reading the essay! These were the most beautiful thoughts I've ever read! Dear Christine, I wish I could be in touch with my feelings as you are now.” –Tatiana M.

“Dear Christine, in the years I've been reading your posts, I am repeatedly touched by your realness and wisdom.” –Ariel R.

“Christine, I LOVE you SO much for this! And I will be reading this to my son when he gets home from school later today because I think it’s an important message for all artists. There are a LOT of critics in this world, ready to point out our imperfections. And some, who take pleasure in doing so. After a while, maybe, we become that critic for ourselves—telling ourselves "it’s impossible, those people are not like us, they are somehow more special." But it only takes one small, pure voice (like my son for me) pushing back on those messages to help us see our way back to the things we love. Thank you for being one of those voices.” –Vanessa A.

“Just a quick note to say THANK YOU SO VERY MUCH for your weekly essays! I ALWAYS enjoy them and you always seem to know EXACTLY what I need to hear. Thank you, thank you, a million thank yous!” –Jill B.

“I know these articles aren’t easy for you but please know that we love them! I think it’s fantastic how you try to break down the thought process behind the art because heaven knows, we need it! It is such a universal problem that it is our thinking (and unfortunately, thoughtless people) that hold us back from making art. Thank you so much for taking the time and effort to put these thoughts together for us.” –Renee R.

Thank you for your support! <3

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Illustrated essays from an artist (and mom and human) on living the creative life. Currently: making comics about IVF and a picture book about jellyfish.


Artist and author/illustrator of 7 books including the Layla and the Bots graphic novel series published by Scholastic.