Eager to network and learn more about the industry, I joined the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators a few weeks ago. I thought that by joining it would help in my research I had begun on my thesis project, a 32-page picture book that I am illustrating for a client. I just wanted to write and mention how pleased I am with the resources thus far through SCBWI. I am looking forward to participating in some upcoming conferences put on by the local chapter, Southern Breeze too. After joining, I received in the mail a "Publication Guide" with information about publishers and the submission process, as well as a copy of SCBWI's super informative newsletter. I definitely recommend to anyone interested in the children's illustration market to join.
On a high from my new membership, I went, toting my portfolio, to the portfolio workshop last weekend, hosted by Southern Breeze. They had two great speakers, Donna German of Sylvan Dell Publishing and Mark Braught, freelance illustrator. Sylvan Dell is a company that produces children's books with a focus in math and science. Donna spoke about submissions she receives, things she likes to see in a potential illustrator for her books, and necessities about starting out (importance of a website, other professionalisms, etc.). Mark, who gave a super pastel demo at SCAD a couple quarters ago, gave insight on promoting one's work, pricing, and the importance of a good portfolio. The actual portfolio review portion of the event was short, but I felt like the information from the speakers and networking were very beneficial.
The impetus for the portfolio workshop was to prepare for wik09 (Writing and Illustrating for Kids '09), their annual Fall conference in Birmingham, AL. Pat and I registered to go. I think I got him eager to find out about graphic novels in the children's market, which is going to be a workshop at the conference, given by Calista Brill, Editor of FirstSecond Books. I am going to some workshops, which I hope will help with not only insight ino the industry and meeting some children's illustrators and writers (and maybe some publishers too!), but also will aid in my thesis. I also signed up for a portfolio review, and look forward to the feedback I'll recieve on my work at the conference.
I'll follow up this blog with some notes and photos from the Birmingham conference in case it might interest some of my fellow illustrator friends!
Speaking of other illustrator friends, you all might like this:
I heard through this event last weekend of a great resource new to Southern Breeze illustrators, the Illustrators' Corner. It is a place to post works for critque, to both give and get feedback. I look forward to posting something in the near future.
P.s. I won my category at the Generate event! I got a copy of Adobe CS4 for my Christmas cover design for Atlanta Intown! Yay! I saw the other entries, and they were all AWESOME. I have no idea how I won, I was just happy to finish.