Hi. I’m Joanna and I’m an illustrator with a background in the giftware industry and in recent years publishing. I have worked with award winning children’s author Lynne Reid Banks as well as the redesign of that dear bear that we all love, Paddington, with a freelance colleague for the official film style catalogue out this year…. I love working with self publishing authors and publishers alike on children’s books, poetry, fiction and non fiction titles that have heart and depth.
Wow! Look at those gorgeous illustrations is just the reaction you want when someone picks up your children’s book for the first time. In fact if we rewind, it’s the reason someone will pick up your book in the first place.
The illustration should be absolutely edible and delightful, the colour palette and characterization consistent. Unfortunately there are a fair amount of troubled children’s book illustrations out there, mainly in the arena of self publishing…that….well…. aren’t meant to be scary, but give you shivers for all the wrong reasons!
Something I always say to new children’s authors who wish to go the self publishing route, make sure the illustrator you choose is actually a professional or at least can create a consistent character across a 30 pages with a variety of spread layouts. Agree a payment plan, agree a deadline, keep communication open throughout and ask to see roughs/line drawings during the creation process so you can say happily to yourself ‘This person gets my story’.
Can I just add too, for the avoidance of doubt, should you go the publisher route with your story, they will not want to see illustrations presented with your manuscript. Publishers have their own ideas about what illustrator will bring zing to Prudence the Petulant Rabbit or who will create a convincing but cute robot dragon for your picture book idea….so don’t send them any artwork…..no…just don’t.
Here are a couple of children’s book illustrators whose work I think is awesome…
Oh…and there’s me…well it would be rude not to…
yes they are lovely, Joanna - I especially like the baby penguin looking up at the stars! There are quite a few authors on here who have - or are considering - self-pubbing. Perhaps you should put the link to your website in the 'introduce your work' section?