The Illustrators Guide to Business

Wednesday 30 April 2014, 10.00-17.30 Thursday 1 May 2014, 10.00-17.30

The Courtauld Institute of Art, Somerset House, Strand, London, WC2R 0RN


The essential two-day course taught by specialists will give you the business skills to succeed as a professional illustrator.

This intensive course has been put together to help any illustrator acquire the knowledge and critical skills crucial to building a successful career. Structured to be both comprehensive and manageable, each session is tailored to provide an essential step-by-step guide to a successful freelance career. It is also an exciting opportunity to meet with peers and get indispensable practical advice and support from industry experts. So stay ahead of the competition, increase your confidence and develop your strategy for the future.

Non Members £60 per day, £110 for both days Students, AOI & SCWBI Members £50 per day, £90 for both days

Advanced booking recommended call 020 7759 1015 to pay by credit or debit card.

Illustration by Tim Ellis


Illustration and the Children's Book Industry: secrets to success

Sunday 9 March 2014, 10.00-17.30

The Courtauld Institute of Art, Somerset House, Strand, London, WC2R 0RN

This one-day event aims to provide artists with all the essential information needed for working in the field of children’s book illustration.

Presentations and talks are given by a wide range of experts with specialist knowledge including illustrator Helen Stephens of How to hide a Lion fame, Hannah Whitty, Associate Director at Plum Pudding Illustration agency and Kate Burns Picture Book Publisher for Hachette UK.  

Topics under discussion include what publishers look for in a potential illustrator, what agents want to see from submissions, the portfolio of the children’s book illustrator and the inspiration behind some of the UK’s bestselling picture books.  

This event, organised by the Association of Illustrators (AOI), is open to illustration students and working illustrators at different stages of their professional career as well as anyone with a lively curiosity about the industry.  

Non Members £60

Students, AOI & SCBWI Members £50

Advanced booking required, call 020 7759 1015 to pay by credit or debit card


Images (top row, left to right): How to Hide Lion © Helen Stephens, published by Alison Green Books, Is there a Dog in this Book © Viviane Schwarz, published by Walker Books


Images (bottom row, left to right): Hannah Whitty, Kate Burns, Viviane Schwarz, Helen Stephens, Fig Taylor






Viviane Schwarz, Illustrator

Viviane Schwarz will discuss her experience of the publishing process and what led to her first taste of success. Viviane Schwarz was born in Germany. She lives and works in London, making interactive children's books and comics. Her books include There are Cats in this Book and There are No Cats in this Book, both published by Walker Books. Her work was chosen for a Booktrust Best New Illustrators Award in 2011, and shortlisted for the Young People's Comics Award 2013. Viviane has a master's degree in authorial illustration and is an associate lecturer on the Illustration BA of Plymouth University.


Tea Break


Kate Burns, Publisher, Hachette UK

Kate Burns will discuss the process children’s illustrators can expect to encounter when working with a publisher and addresses the current trends, challenges and changes facing the industry. Kate Burns has been working in children's publishing for over 20 years. In 2012, She returned to Orchard Books, an imprint of Hachette Children's Book, as the publisher of the picture, gift and novelty books. Previously, she has worked at Hodder Children's Books, as deputy publisher for HarperCollins Children's Books and head of picture books at Nosy Crow. She has worked with many established authors and illustrators, including Lauren Child, Cressida Cowell, Debi Gliori, Jane Ray, Emma Chichester Clark and James Mayhew, as well as publishing new picture book talent throughout her career including Emma Thomson, Caryl Hart, Emma Dodd, Sarah Warburton, Sarah Gibb and Steve Lenton.




Fig Taylor, Portfolio consultant

Fig Taylor will explore what makes a great children’s book portfolio and the best way to get a foothold in this popular market. Fig has almost 30 years’ experience in the illustration industry as an agent and is the AOI's resident portfolio consultant. She is also the author of ‘How To Create A Portfolio And Get Hired’, published by Laurence King.


Hannah Whitty, Associate Director, Plum Pudding Illustration

Hannah Whitty will discuss the role of the agent within the children’s book industry, what qualities they are looking for in an illustrator, what illustrators should be looking for and the best way to approach them.   Formerly an Editor for Book Guild Publishing, Hannah is now Associate Director for Plum Pudding, one of the leading children’s illustration agencies in the world. Plum Pudding represents and exciting range of children’s illustrators working across the globe.


Tea Break


Helen Stephens

Prolific children’s book illustrator Helens Stephens reflects on her successful career, her love of picture books and the inspiration behind her work. Helen Stephens is the author and illustrator of award winning picture books such as Fleabag and How to Hide a Lion. Stephens has also illustrated for other authors including Roger McGough, Holly Webb and Michael Morpurgo. She is a visiting lecturer at Cambridge School of Art, MA in Illustrating for Children.



Exhibition: The Serco Prize for Illustration 2014 – London Stories


14 February – 6 April 2014 at the London Transport Museum


Across the ages, London has produced and inspired countless stories. Fictitious and real characters and events in this amazing city have always held fascination, from anecdotal urban myths to grand tales of historic legend.

London Stories, an exhibition featuring the best of the entries for The Serco Prize for Illustration 2014, opens on 14 February 2014 and will feature 50 works of art.

Entrants were asked to create an illustration which visually captures a well-known or obscure London narrative; stories that are contemporary or historical, real or imagined.

The shortlisted illustrations celebrate a vibrant, multi-layered London – urban myths, historic events, remarkable characters and London’s animal population. From ghost buses, Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show of 1887 and Lenin’s ‘love letter to London’ to a Pearly King and Queen, and an escaped monkey jazz band. Other entries depict the ravens and the white bear of the Tower of London, Tin Pan Alley as well as literary and musical references such as The Picture of Dorian Gray, The Girl from Petrovka, Mary Poppins, Sweeny Todd and Oranges and Lemons.

There’s also a chance to explore the exhibition after hours and enjoy the opening evening of London Stories during the LTM’s Friday Late on 14 February 2014. There will be a bar and DJ and storytelling for adults on board some of the heritage vehicles; a chance to illustrate your own London Story with short illustration workshops, and to strike a pose in a photo-booth with a choice of props. Please see the LTM website for more info.

The exhibition closes on Sunday 6 April 2014.

For further information visit