Thursday, February 14, 2019

Daniel Stolle's "50 tips that will make you a better illustrator"



Find what resonates for you among these pearls of wisdom from Daniel Stolle's article on Creative Bloq.

From:
Paper is one of the oldest technologies we have. Cultural creation has been based on it for millennia. Let's not abandon it just yet, especially in the early stages of a project.

to
While you're studying illustration – either formally, or by yourself – you are exposed to great work by others. You feel jealous of your peers and in awe of the masters. You're inspired, you're confused, you try to create, and then you're frustrated by what you produce and how badly it compares. And in spite of it all, you're still driven to make something, so you try again. Although you are dealing a lot with your emotions in that whole turbulent process, you might not have learned to observe yourself and what you are doing yet. To be successful, you need to find out a lot of things about yourself first: What are your strengths? What are your weaknesses? This is easier said than done, but start with simple things first. For example, what are your most productive working hours? Whether you work best at 6am or midnight, don't miss out on these hours, and try to plan the rest of your day around them. Once your needs are taken care of, you will become less anxious. You are the person you have to work with for the rest of your life, so get to know yourself. Be disciplined, of course, but also be accepting and tolerant.
it's a list of advice that's well-worth checking out.

Illustrate and Write On,
Lee

Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Ten Inspirational #NY19SCBWI Highlights from the SCBWI Winter 2019 Conference!

So many amazing moments, so much wisdom shared, and so much inspiration...

#10

“What a privilege I have to be welcomed into the imagination of kids. What a responsibility I have to give them my best work.” - Jarret Krosoczka

#9

‘Don’t just plot the story. Plot the characters.’ — Varian Johnson

#8

"don't just change the skin color and think you've drawn diverse characters" talking truth around in and to draw difference with accuracy and empathy


#7

Write for your audience. "Other people will learn to read it." — Elizabeth Acevedo

#6

“...remember that you, that I, are worthy of every poem.” Elizabeth Acevedo

#5

I love this distinction by Marla Frazee on picture books: It’s not the author and the illustrator who collaborate. It’s the *words* and the *pictures* that must collaborate.

#4

"The goal is to construct the kind of art that can change outcomes." We children's book creators create opportunities. When kids see it in our books, they can imagine creating opportunities for themselves. — Cornelius Minor

"You can't be what you can't see." — Julia Torres

#3
"You need multiple conflicts." — Alvina Ling

#2
"There needs to be a purpose for every character in the story." And for each character in each scene. — Emma Dryden

#1
"Voice = Word Choice + Rhythm.
 Rhythm  is two things: Punctuation and Sentence Length."
It may be hard to do, but it's not hard to define. — Linda Sue Park

What are your highlights? Share them in comments...

Thursday, February 7, 2019

#NY19SCBWI Starts Tomorrow!

With the Golden Kite Awards ceremony kicking things off Friday night, Saturday and Sunday should be a whirlwind mix of keynotes (Elizabeth Acevedo! Jarrett Krosoczka! Christopher Paul Curtis!), an agent and editor panel (Maria Barbo! Sarah Davies! Kate Egan! Tanusri Prasanna! Alexander Slater! Mekisha Telfer!), intensive breakout sessions, networking, peer critiques, socials, and book signings!

Follow along (and chime in) online with #NY19SCBWI

And check out the SCBWI Conference Blog for live blogging the keynotes and panel!

Illustrate and Write On!
Lee

Tuesday, February 5, 2019

K.M. Weiland shares "The 10 Rules of Writing Large Casts of Characters"



Check out this useful article by K.M. Weiland on managing the writing of large (and maybe even small) casts of characters. Here's a taste:
Rule #1: Characters Should Exist to Represent Theme and Move Plot (Preferably Both)

The first and single most important principle to consider when evaluating the size of your cast is this: does each character matter to this story?

Characters, like any element in a well-thought-out story, should never be throwaway additions. Each must contribute to the story. Sometimes this contribution may necessarily be as small as a few catalytic or informational lines in a one-off scene. But the more screentime characters have, the greater your responsibility to make sure they contribute to the story on a larger scale.

It’s not enough for prominent characters to exist in the story merely to move the plot; they must also influence and comment upon the thematic argument, either symbolically or by directly impacting the protagonist’s personal arc of growth.
Read the full article here.

My thanks to K.M. for sharing, and to Cynthia Leitich Smith's indispensable Cynsations blog for the heads-up on this gem.

Illustrate and Write On,
Lee