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upcoming Workshops & EVENTS

LECTURE WITH JAMES CATCHPOLE
Why Do Picture Book Publishers Keep Authors and Illustrators Apart (Genuine Question)?

Date
Thursday 26th May

tIMe
7-8.30PM (UK BST)

Venue
Online, Zoom
 
FEE
£20 (INCLUDES booking fee)




 

If too many cooks spoil the broth, what’s the optimum broth-to-cook ratio?

And should you stick your oar in? Not into the broth, obviously.

But if your boat’s heading for the rocks, in a whole other metaphor…

…and you’re not supposed to be rowing anymore, but you still have an oar?

As an agent, James Catchpole likes to get involved in his clients’ stories: helping sort the good ideas from the iffy; untangling mixed metaphors. Editor stuff. Then he reads them out (the shorter ones) to proper editors, and tries to make them laugh/cry/shudder with horror. When they buy one, of course, he has to make like Elsa and let it go. Except, letting go is hard, especially with picture book texts, when the text is only the first step on the way to the finished book: a hopeful bunch of captions for images that don’t yet exist. So much can go wrong! The broth is treacherous, and full of rocks, apparently. So yes, he keeps his oar handy and tries not to annoy the head chef too much.

But here’s something he couldn’t help noticing, having done this job for over ten years. Aboard that metaphorical boat, floating atop that deep and deadly bowl of metaphorical soup, the author is sat at one end (the stern? Is that a thing?) and the illustrator is sat at the other (I’m going to say prow), and they’re not allowed to speak! They have to signal their ideas and their queries via the captain and first mate sat in between. So the person in charge of the words to go with the pictures, and the person in charge of the pictures to go with the words, in an art form built around the mysterious alchemy of words and pictures, aren’t supposed to communicate. To discuss the words and pictures. Even if supervised.

What madness is this? In what other art form does this happen? I mean, really?

James has now had the huge pleasure of working on a successful series of books – The Hug and sequels, by Eoin McLaughlin and Polly Dunbar, for Faber – where the editor/head chef/captain of the boat made sure to introduce author and illustrator before they embarked on the recipe/journey, and even welcomed the agent sticking his oar in from time to time (as was inevitable, given James represents both Eoin and Polly, and as we know, still has his oar…). So he’d like to tell the story of how that all came together.

And then he’d like to ask: so why aren’t picture books always made this way? Something must go wrong. Does the boat veer off course and get stranded on the rocks? Do the crew rise in mutiny? Do they force the captain to walk the plank and then scuttle themselves? Do they collide with some sort of vast floating dumpling and sink under the sheer weight of their own mixed metaphors? James is hoping you might help him answer these questions in the Q&A.

James Catchpole runs The Catchpole Agency for children’s authors and illustrators, and is the author of What Happened to You?

At this event, James will discuss how picture books come together using The Hug and sequels as a case study.

Tickets are sold through Eventbrite and are non-refundable.

 

Zoom links will be emailed directly to you a couple of days before the workshop.

 

The event is LIVE - but buying a ticket will give you access to a recording of the event which will be available to view back for 48 hours afterwards.

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KEITH NEGLEY
illustratoR/ARTIST

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Date
Thursday 9th June 

Time
7-9.00PM (UK BST)
 
Venue
Online, Zoom
 
FEE
£12 (INCLUDES booking fee)
 

Keith Negley's work has appeared on skateboard decks to children’s books and everything in between. He is a frequent contributor to The New York Times and New Yorker in addition to many other national publications.

 

He received his BFA from the Milwaukee Institute of Art and Design in 2000, and his MFA from The School of Visual Arts in New York City in 2013 and doesn’t regret the student debt one bit.

 

He’s won 5 medals from the Society of Illustrators, a medal from the Society of Illustrators West, and 2 medals from the 3x3 International Illustration annual. His book Tough Guys (Have Feelings Too) received a Kate Greenaway Medal nomination, and his most recent book The Boy And The Wild Blue Girl was released in March of 2020 with Balzer + Bray (Harper Collins). Keith resides in the mountains of Bellingham Washington with his two boys surrounded by giant spiders and teaches illustration at Western Washington University.

 

Join Keith to hear him talk about his work and process and hear about his illustration work from editorial to books. There will also be a Q&A opportunity after the talk, and Keith will lead an activity.

Tickets are sold through Eventbrite and are non-refundable. Zoom links will be emailed directly to you on the day of the event around 5pm UK time.

 

The event is LIVE - but buying a ticket will give you access to a recording of the event which will be available to view back for 48 hours afterwards.

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FIONA WOODCOCK
illustratoR/AUTHOR

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Date
Thursday 14th July 

Time
7-9.00PM (UK BST)
 
Venue
Online, Zoom
 
FEE
£12 (INCLUDES booking fee)
 

Since graduating from Glasgow School of Art, Fiona Woodcock is lucky enough to have always earned her living from drawing. She started her career working in animation, but now specialises in picture books. 

Fiona is the author and illustrator of Hiding Heidi, Poppy and the Blooms, Look and Hello. In 2019 Look was the winner of an AOI World Illustration Award (Children’s Books/Professional category). 

Her debut book Hiding Heidi was nominated for the CILIP Greenaway Award, as were her illustrations for A Dot in the Snow by Corrinne Averiss and The Snow Dragon by Abi Elphinstone, which was also chosen as an Independent Booksellers’ Children’s Book of the Month. Her latest book is A Song in the Mist by Corrinne Averiss.

A perfect project would combine her love of storytelling, pattern, character design and hand drawn typography. Fiona works in her London based studio, drawing with children’s blow pens, rubber stamps, cutting stencils and experimenting with printing techniques. 

 

Join Fiona to hear all about her process and her inspirations, plus how she illustrates and writes her books. There will also be a Q&A opportunity after the talk, and Fiona will lead an activity.

Tickets are sold through Eventbrite and are non-refundable. Zoom links will be emailed directly to you on the day of the event around 5pm UK time.

 

The event is LIVE - but buying a ticket will give you access to a recording of the event which will be available to view back for 48 hours afterwards.