The Illustrator’s Story SCBWI Utah/Southern Idaho Illustrator’s Conference March 2, 2019

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Any Questions? Email Manelle Oliphant illustration@manelleoliphant.com

Click here to register

”The Illustrator’s Journey

March 2, 2019, at the Sons of the Utah Pioneers Building,

3301 East Louise Ave., Millcreek, Utah 84109

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Schedule

8:30 – 9:00 Bagels and water, networking, set up portfolios ($5 for portfolio display) and grab a seat

9:00 – Welcome and Announcements

9:15 – Kevin Lewis –Form Follows Function: Writing for the Very Young

(Portfolio Reviews with Kevin begin)

10:15 – Julie Olsen –Agents: Who, What, Why, When, How

11:15 – Molly Idle –Motion Pictures to Picture Books

12:15 – Lunch

1:15 – First Look

2:15 – Networking with Illustrator to Illustrator

2:45 – Questions and Answers

3:30 – Door Prizes and Portfolio Contest Winners Announced

3:40 – Book signings

Make sure you purchase books ahead of time and bring them to the conference to get them signed.

 

Here are their author pages on Amazon.

Molly Idle

Julie Olson

Kevin Lewis

 

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Portfolio Display

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Portfolio display costs $5 at registration. Local art directors are invited to view portfolios as well as our visiting faculty.

Utah/Southern Idaho Chapter of SCBWI is excited to announce it’s first ever Portfolio Contest at the 2019 Illustrators Conference in Salt Lake City. 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place

winners will have their artwork promoted on the chapter’s website. In addition, 3rd place will receive a $25 gift card to Dick Blick. 2nd place will receive a $50 gift card to Dick Blick. First place will be invited to feature their work on promotional material for the 2020 Illustrators conference and receive $300 payment for their work.

The contest is open to participants in the portfolio showcase at the 2019 Illustrators Conference in SLC, UT.

 

Submission Guidelines:

  • You must have a physical portfolio on display at the 2019 Illustrators Conference.
  • No digital Portfolios.
  • Portfolios should be no larger than 11 x 14 when closed.
  • They must be bound (no loose pages).
  • Your portfolio must contain 12-20 images that are appropriate for the children’s market.
  • No original paintings or drawings (use printouts instead).
  • One set of contact information cards such as a postcard or business cards can sit with your portfolio.
  • You may display one or two book dummies to the portfolio attached with a string.

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A winning portfolio will contain:

  • 12-20 images presented in a clean and professional manner.
  • Images appropriate for the children’s book and magazine market. (Lots of children and animals is a good place to start).
  • Artwork with a consistent voice.
  • Good flow of images from page to page.

The results of the contest will be announced at the close of the Illustrators Conference.

 


First Look is free to enter and Limited first 20 Artists

Click here for First Look Details


 

Early Bird Registration before February 2, 2019

  • SCBWI Members:  $80
  • Students:  $90
  • General public:  $100
  • Portfolio Display:  $5
  • Portfolio or Book Dummy Review with Kevin Lewis $45

Registration after February 2, 2019

  • SCBWI Members:  $90
  • Students:  $105
  • General Public:  $115
  • Portfolio Display:  $5
  • Portfolio or Book Dummy Review with Kevin Lewis $45

First Look

Click here to register


Presenters

Kevin Lewis

11E273AB-410C-43AB-B9ED-6905E9FF765BKevin Lewis is the author of many children’s picture books for toddler and early elementary grades including the classics Chugga-Chugga Choo-Choo and My Truck is Stuck (both illustrated by Daniel Kirk), Halloween favorite The Runaway PumpkinLot at the End of My BlockDinosaur DinosaurTugga-Tugga Tugboat, and Not Inside This House.

Kevin grew up on his grandparents’ farm in Rembert, South Carolina. Around the third grade, he fell in love with books, and by middle school, Kevin was a bit of a reading recluse. Books carried him through high school and Erskine College, where he studied English. A children’s literature course he thought would be an easy three credits ignited his passion for children’s books, a passion that led him to New York City and his first publishing-related job at the legendary bookstore, Books of Wonder.

For over two decades, Kevin has been one of the most highly regarded children’s book editors in the industry. At Scholastic Inc., he worked with Dav Pilkey on the original Captain Underpants. At Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers, where he served as an Editorial Director, Kevin worked with a veritable who’s who of authors and illustrators including Laurie Halse Anderson (Fever 1793, Chains), Spike and Tonya Lee (Please Baby Please), Tony DiTerlizzi and Holly Black (The Spiderwick Chronicles), Derek Anderson and Lauren Thompson (Little Quack), Alex Sanchez (Rainbow Boys), Jim Benton (Franny K. Stein) Angela Johnson, Kadir Nelson, Cynthia Rylant, and Loren Long. As an Executive Editor at Disney Press, Kevin developed and produced the Vampirina Ballerina series and edited books by Matthew Cordell, Barney Saltzberg, and Chris Barton.

In 2018, Kevin became an agent for the Erin Murphy Literary Agency, primarily focusing on writer-illustrators and diverse voices.

These days, Kevin lives in Newburgh, New York in a two-hundred-year-old farmhouse with his husband, Phil, and dog named Kat. Most of the time, you’ll find him gardening in the yard, biking around the Hudson Valley, or sitting on the back porch (which often doubles as his office).

10 Spots for Portfolio Reviews with Kevin Lewis. He will review your website or a book dummy. One or the other. The spots will sell out, so sign up quickly.

 

Molly Idle

0B350A7E-5DBA-421F-A748-88D43D4E217AMolly Idle is the author and illustrator of the Caldecott Honor-winning picture book Flora and the Flamingo and all of the Flora books. She’s also the creator of the Rex series, which includes Tea Rex and Sea Rex, and the illustrator of People Don’t Bite People. Her newest picture book is the dazzling mermaid tale, Pearl.

As a child, Molly was wielding a pencil and scribbling before she could walk. Her mother, who is also an artist, always encouraged Molly to use her paints and easel. After graduating from Arizona State University with a BFA in Drawing, Molly accepted an offer to work as an artist for DreamWorks Feature Animation Studios, where she worked on a number of films. Then she leapt into the world of children’s book illustration!

These days, Molly lives in sunny Arizona with her marvelous, multigenerational family which includes: her brilliant husband, two mercurial sons, two remarkable parents, and a pair of snugly cats. When she’s not making mischief with her boys or watching old Technicolor musicals, Molly can be found in her workshop with a pencil in one hand and a cup of espresso in the other- scribbling away on her next picture book!

Julie Olsen

E5DCBDFC-36F0-44E9-B8FB-F1381363EAF8In fourth grade, Julie Olson stated that she wanted to be an artist when she grew up, and they printed it in the local paper, so she had to follow through, right? Luckily, things worked out, and after earning a BFA in Illustration at BYU, Julie began her career as an artist. Julie Olson has now been illustrating picture books for nearly 20 years and authoring them for 8. She loves sharing the knowledge and experience she’s gained with others to help them fulfill their dreams as well. You can find out more about Julie, her books, her art, and other helpful information at www.JulieOlsonBooks.com.

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Click here to register

Registration Opens November 1, 2018

Early Bird Prices End February 2, 2019

See You There!

 

 

 

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First Look 2019

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Do you want the chance to get an in-person critique of your work from an agent and professional illustrators?

Then you’re in the right place!

This year for our “First Look” panel, Agent Kevin Lewis (Erin Murphy Literary), and Illustrators Molly Idle, and Julie Olson will be critiquing YOUR illustration on a live panel at the Utah/Southern Idaho Illustrator’s Conference on March 2, 2019.

Submission guidelines:

Your Illustration: You can choose to illustrate a middle grade novel cover or a full picture book illustration (specifics below).

Illustration specifics (choose 1):

Choice #1- For a middle grade novel cover: Illustrate a cover for a classic story (fairy tale, folk tale, classic novel). You can interpret the story however you want. Make sure it is age appropriate for the audience (8-12 years old). Leave space for the title and author’s name.

Dimensions for a middle grade novel cover: 5 1/2 x 8 inches (must be vertical orientation) with a 1/4 inch bleed all the way around. Make your final file in jpeg format at 150 dpi.

Choice #2- For a full page picture book interior illustration: Illustrate a full bleed illustration for a picture book interior. Illustrate a classic story (fairy tale, folk tale, classic novel). You can interpret the story however you want. Make sure it is age appropriate for the audience (3-8 years old). Leave space for some text somewhere in the illustration.

Dimensions for a full page picture book interior illustration: 11 x 9 inches (must be horizontal orientation) with a 1/4 inch bleed all the way around. Make your final file in jpeg format at 150 dpi.

File format: JPEG

File name: lastname_firstname.jpeg

Send to: Shawna Tenney at shawna(dot)tenney(at)gmail(dot)com.

Email subject line: First Look 2019

Due date: Turn in your illustration no later than midnight on Saturday February 16, 2019. Entries turned in later will not be accepted. We are only accepting the first 20 Entries. So hurry and get your illustration turned in. This is a popular event!

Cost: Free!

Questions? Email Shawna with any questions you might have about your “First Look” illustration entry.

The 2018 SCBWI Utah Southern Idaho Illustrator’s Conference

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Manelle Oliphant 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It was a great conference this year. The portfolio display was amazing with many examples of great art. We said good bye to Sherry Meidell as the area illustrator coordinator and said hello to Manelle Oliphant.

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Sherry Meidell and John Elgren of the Sons Of the Utah Pioneers

Sherry Meidell painted and presented a watercolor for the Sons of the Utah Pioneers. They have been very geneous with their building and accommodating our conference.

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Richard Erickson

Richard Ericksen the art director from Deseret Book talked about getting the book brief and then picking the designer and the illustrator. He has to think about budget and time frame. Is the tone of the art consistent with the text? The cover illustration is needed as soon as possible for publicity purposes. One thing for illustrators to consider is the trust the publisher has put in you to meet deadlines and to do the project right.

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Brandon Dorman

The great illustrator Brandon Dorman talked about each illustrator having their own unique journey. He also talked about the importance of meeting deadlines. If we work hard, we can help our stars align. He also talked about walking through all doors that open to you.

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Brandon Dorman

We had two break out sessions this year. Manelle Oliphant and Shawna Tenney were the presenters. Manelle talked about the importance of branding and gave us many things to think about. She had a lot of questions for us to ask ourselves about what brand we want to put out there and who we are talking to.

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Manelle Oliphant

Shawna talked about how to put together a great book dummy. The illustrators that attended her presentation appreciated the insights she presented.

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Shawna Tenney

The first look was a great chance to hear the presenters critique the participant’s illustrations. We got the opportunity to look at the art and see and hear what others might think about the illustrations. There is always a lot to be learned from the comments that are made.

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First Look

There is also a lot of conversation and networking that takes place in the illustrator to illustrator break out session. It gives the illustrators the chance to ask questions of their peers and hear what others are doing.
Then to wind up we had the panel discussion which is always informative. We could ask questions to the presenters and get some last minute comments from them on subjects that interested the illustrators. It was another great conference.

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Travis Rawlings and Annie Bailey

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Manelle Oliphant and Jennifer Eichelberger

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The audience and portfolio display

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Margaret Weber, Brandon Dorman and Richard Ericksen

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Margaret Weber, Brandon Dorman and Richard Erickson

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Lunch

Shawna Tenney and her Amazing Illustrations

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Shawna JC Tenney, Illustrator and Author

Shawna is a great illustrator and the host of the Stories Unbound Podcast.

I was able to ask her some questions about illustrating and her creative process. Enjoy.

1. Could you tell me what was the first spark of idea you got for “Brunhilda’s Backward Day”?

I got the idea from a childhood game I used to play with my best friend Lara. The game was called “The Opposite Witches.” We pretended to be witches that did everything backwards. We flew our brooms backwards, our spells always went backwards, and we even tried to speak backwards. It was so funny to us that we mostly ended up laughing the whole time.

2. And how did it change as you started to work on it?

When I first wrote the story, it was about a couple of kids who went to a witch’s house and what happened to them when the witch’s spells went backwards. But the story just wasn’t working, so I decided to make the story about the witch and what happened to her when her spells went backwards. After that, the story began to work.

Brunhilda’s Backward Day by Shawna Tenney

The cover of Shawna’s Book.

3. Did the illustrations come easy for the book?

No, it really took a lot of effort and deliberation. I started with a lot of planning- planning character design and environment design. Then I did lots of thumbnailing- working and reworking- until the book started to flow. Then I had to work and rework many of the sketches. I was very deliberate and careful about the colors I used. Finishing all the illustrations was a learning process. But I’m really glad I took the time to make an effort to make the best quality artwork that I could.

 

4. Did you have any setbacks in creating the book and what did you do to overcome the problem?

I can’t think of any specific huge set backs that happened during the creation of this book, but I had many story and design problems I had to work through. I revised my story many times with the help of other writers. I showed my sketches and color studies to my illustrator friends, and they helped me solve the visual problems I was dealing with. Critique groups and trusted art friends are so important to have if you’re going to work in this industry.

Storyboard for Shawna Tenneys’s Brunhilda Book

Part of the story board.

 

5. What has been one of the most useful bits of information you have received at the illustration conference?

There have been so many good and inspiring things I have learned through each speaker we have had at the conference. It is hard to choose just one thing. But I really enjoyed hearing from Giuseppe Castellano, Art Director at Penguin Random House. He was very personable and I enjoyed talking with him. I really liked what he had to say in his presentation. Here are a few gold nuggets of information I got from his talk:

He talked about the 3 keys to being an affective artist: Personality, Prowess, and Presentation.

He also talked about marketing your artwork. When you are marketing your artwork on your website, what matters most is your art- not your web address, font, sketches, logo, background etc.

We also heard first hand about how he finds artist for his projects. He doesn’t find artists through artist reps anymore. But he usually finds work through postcards, emails, social media and friend referrals.

Illustration by Shawna Tenney

Illustration by Shawna Tenney

 

6. Has the portfolio display been helpful for you as far as getting an illustration job?

Yes! Local art directors come to visit the portfolio display every year.

Last year a designer for the Friend Magazine, came to look at the portfolio display. We talked briefly after he looked at my portfolio. A week later, I received an email asking if I was available to create a cover for The Friend Magazine. Yes, of course!

 

7. Why would you recommend the conference to other illustrators?

It’s a wonderful place to mingle with other illustrators, network with industry professionals, get your work in front of art directors, and learn a ton about working in the children’s book industry. Plus it’s the only opportunity like this locally for illustrators, and at a great price!

 

8. Do you have any ideas on how an illustrator should prepare for the conference?

Prepare your portfolio with your best work for the portfolio display. Have some art friends give you feedback on what if your best work, and listen to what they have to say. Prepare an illustration for the First Look Critique. It’s an invaluable experience to get a first hand critique from an art director and professional illustrators.

July 2017 cover of the FRIEND

Shawna’s cover for the July 2017 issue of the Friend.

 

9. What advice would you have for a beginning illustrator?

Go to this conference! And go to as many conferences as you can.

Also, don’t be nervous! Don’t worry if you’re just beginning on the journey. Everyone is at different places in the journey, but everyone was a beginner at one time. Go prepared to talk with everyone and learn from everyone. We are all there to help each other!

 

10. What advice would you have for a continuing illustrator?

Go to this conference!

It’s so important to keep networking and find your circle of trust and support for your journey. Some of the things taught at the conference, you probably already know. But you never know what new things you will learn. And never underestimate what you can teach to others!

Also, you never know what new work opportunities could come out of showing your portfolio at this conference. It’s such a great opportunity to connect directly with art directors and other professional illustrators.

Introducing Brooke Smart

Brooke Smart has come to our conferences and gone to some of the bigger national ones. We asked her about her experiences with both kinds of conferences. She is a delight to talk to and has some pretty cool experiences.

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1. Why illustration? How long have you been working as an illustrator?

I have been drawing and painting since I was a small child and have always known I wanted to do something with art, but it wasn’t until college that I discovered a love of storytelling as well. It was definitely lucky that I ended up at BYU with the incredible professors that I had there in the illustration department. They taught me how to combine those two interests into one and to make a career of it. I took a detour from illustration for about five years after school, pursuing a career in fine art, but have been focusing all of my energies toward illustration for the last four years. I love the world that I’ve stumbled into: the projects, the community, the interesting facts I get to learn, the stories I get to tell. I’ve never worked so hard in all my life, but I know it’s what i’m meant to be doing.

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2. You’ve gone to a few different SCBWI conferences. What are some of the benefits of going to a national conference? What are some of the benefits of going to our local conference?

Both are great!

The national conferences are awesome because of the locations. You’re able to show your work to hundreds of art directors and agents from big publishing houses and top agencies. They also last two or three days, with lectures and workshops from pretty amazing people. It’s also great to connect with other artists from around the world. Community is so important when you spend most of your time working alone in your studio.
Our local conference also has its perks, though. It’s a day of reconnecting with some of the same people each year, listening to an illustrator or two who is working in the field, making it happen, and being able to ask them anything you want (Wow!). And there is also usually an art director that comes and gives that perspective on the business, which is so helpful. And no travel!
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3. You received an honor/award at the New York conference. Can you tell us a little about that?

It was definitely unexpected. It was my first NY conference and it was intimidating to be there amongst so many talented artists. Receiving the award was something that helped me to continue on the path of freelance illustration. So much of being an illustrator is being brave enough to jump into the unknown and hope that there is a place for your voice, or jumping in and convincing people that there is a place for your voice. I’m grateful for that moment of encouragement from people that I admire so much.

 

4. What made you decide to come to the Utah/Southern Idaho conference last year?

That is always an easy decision. It is somewhere where I always learn something new, get insight into things I’m doing right or wrong, and somewhere that I can connect with amazing illustrators that live close by.

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5. What did you hope to get out of the conference? Did it help you get any illustration jobs?
With every conference, I hope to learn how to do what I do better, illustration-wise, business-wise, etc. But I also hope to make connections with art directors that will give me new, exciting projects. Last year was great and I got to meet with an art director from Peachtree Publishing and show her my work. She ended up contacting me a month or two later and hiring me to do a book cover. Yay!

 

6. Would you recommend going to others? 

Absolutely, I’d definitely recommend it! Come!

 

Let’s Meet Rebecca Sorge!

Rebecca has come to our conference for a few years now and we noticed she got hired by a few of our visiting art directors. We interviewed here to find out what she likes about the conference and how it’s helped her career!

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Rebecca at work

Why did you come to the conference?

The first time I came to SCBWI I had just graduated from a BFA program and was hoping for some guidance on bridging the gap between being a student and a professional. The advice from guest speakers and the portfolio review with local publishers really helped me get my start. Since then, I’ve loved coming back each year to hear new speakers and meet other artists and art directors in the area.

 

What did you hope to get out of it?

Each year I hope to get new work or a new client out of the conference. Even if that doesn’t always happen, I also look forward to the valuable advice from guest speakers. SCBWI invites fantastic ones each year and I always come away with new perspectives, tips, unexpected ideas, and helpful advice. I feel reenergized after the conference is over and inspired to do and be better.

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What did you do to prepare for the conference? Specifically, what did you do for your portfolio?

Aside from bringing a notepad or sketchbook to take notes in, most of my preparation is putting together a portfolio. I review it each year in the week or so before coming, updating it with my strongest work. I also try to limit the number of pieces to about ten and make sure that the portfolio reflects the kind of work I want to get. I have friends look over it with me before coming to make sure it flows well as you flip through it and that each piece belongs there. It’s hard to cut stuff, but I think having a heavily curated and smaller portfolio works better than trying to include every project. I also make sure that the first and last pages (the pages the portfolio is most likely to be left open to) feature my strongest pieces.

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Why would you recommend the conference to other illustrators?

The SCBWI conference is the perfect size, especially for me. It makes it easier to meet other artists in the area (which is helpful – I spend most of my time working from home and in my own little bubble). The smaller setting helps it from getting overwhelming. It’s easier to engage with the guest speakers than at larger conferences like ICON and there are plenty of opportunities to meet and greet the visiting art directors. It’s an amazing value for the price and one of my favorite conferences each year.

 

How did the conference lead you to get illustration work?

The portfolio show they do each year has been extremely helpful. It has connected me with several clients who saw my portfolio at the conference and later contacted me for work. Beyond getting my portfolio in front of new art directors, I also get to reconnect with old clients who come back from year to year in a more direct way than an email or a mailer. It’s helpful for building up repeat clients.

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See Rebecca’s work on her website rebeccasorge.com

Thanks, Rebecca! We look forward to seeing you again this year!

For more information on this coming conference click here.

To regester for the conference click here.

First Look Guidelines 2018

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Do you want the chance to get an in-person critique of your work from an art director?

Then you’re in the right place!

This year for our “First Look” panel, Art Director Richard Erickson (Shadow Mountain) and Illustrators Brandon Dorman, Shawna J.C. Tenney, and Manelle Oliphant will be critiquing YOUR illustration on a live panel at the Utah/Southern Idaho Illustrator’s Conference on March 3, 2018.

Submission guidelines:

Your Illustration: This year, you can choose to illustrate a middle grade novel cover or a full picture book illustration (specifics below).

Illustration specifics (choose 1):

Choice #1- For a middle grade novel cover: Illustrate a cover for a classic story (fairy tale, folk tale, classic novel). You can interpret the story however you want. Make sure it is age appropriate for the audience (8-12 years old). Leave space for the title and author’s name.

Dimensions for a middle grade novel cover: 5 1/2 x 8 inches (must be vertical orientation) with a 1/4 inch bleed all the way around. Make your final file in jpeg format at 150 dpi.

Choice #2- For a full page picture book interior illustration: Illustrate a full bleed illustration for a picture book interior. Illustrate a classic story (fairy tale, folk tale, classic novel). You can interpret the story however you want. Make sure it is age appropriate for the audience (3-8 years old). Leave space for some text somewhere in the illustration.

Dimensions for a full page picture book interior illustration: 11 x 9 inches (must be horizontal orientation) with a 1/4 inch bleed all the way around. Make your final file in jpeg format at 150 dpi.

File format: JPEG

File name: lastname_firstname.jpeg

Send to: Shawna Tenney at shawna(dot)tenney(at)gmail(dot)com.

Email subject line: First Look 2018

Due date: Turn in your illustration no later than midnight on February 24, 2018. Entries turned in later will not be accepted.

Questions? Email Shawna with any questions you might have about your “First Look” illustration entry.

 

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