Society of
Children's Book Writers
and Illustrators

ENCORE! North for Illustrators 2019

Date(s) - 09/28/2019
8:00 am - 3:30 pm

Courtyard Marriott
2200 Southwood Dr - Nashua, NH 03063

New critiquer just added. See below!


2019 ENCORE! North for Illustrators

September 28, 2019
8:30 – 3:30

The Event Center at Courtyard Marriott Nashua

2200 Southwood Dr., Nashua, NH

ENCORE for Illustrators is where all the best illustration workshops from the past two conferences will be reprised. Our full day includes continental breakfast, lunch, five presentations on illustration and critiques! Yes, I said critiques!


8:00 — 8:30
Breakfast and Meet and Greet
Enjoy a continental breakfast between 8:00 – 8:30.

8:30 — 9:30
Demystifying Vector Art: Adobe Illustrator Techniques
with Jannie Ho
Interested in illustrating in vector? This workshop will run through the basics of Adobe Illustrator, and how to incorporate it into the workflow of creating a children’s book. We will discuss using the pen tool and drawing in anchor points; laying out book spread; ease of revisions and resizing in vectors. From placing hand drawn sketches to creating textures digitally, let’s explore if working in vectors is right for you.

Jannie Ho is the author/illustrator of Bear and Chicken, published by Running Press Kids. Born in Hong Kong, Jannie (pronounced Jane-nee) received her BFA in illustration from Parsons School of Design in New York. After graduating, she worked as an in-house graphic designer at Nickelodeon and Scholastic, and an art director at TIME Magazine for Kids. Jannie specializes in illustrating for the children’s market, with her work appearing in board and novelty books, magazines, toys, crafts and digital media.

9:45 — 10:45
The Illusion of Life: Animation Principles for Picture Book Illustration
with Sarah Reul
Like an animated short film, picture books tell a story through a series of still images, unfolding across the pages rather than flashing on a screen. Many animation concepts, such as exaggeration, anticipation, staging and appeal can be very useful to picture book illustrators. Through simple drawing exercises like two-page flipbooks and analysis of published books, Sarah will explore how you can use the principles of animation to bring your stories to life.

Sarah Lynne Reul is an illustrator, writer and award-winning animator who likes science, bright colors and figuring out how things work. Originally from Brooklyn, she now lives near Boston with her family. After a number of years in science museum education, she was lured back to school by the magic of making drawings come to life. Armed with an MFA degree in 2D animation, Sarah Lynne now strives to pack the energy of animation into each illustration. Her first three books will debut this year: The Breaking News (Roaring Brook/Macmillan, April 2018), Pet the Pets (Little Simon/August 2018) and Allie All Along (Sterling/August 2018).

11:00 —12:00
And Then What Happened?
with Sarah S. Brannen
In order for a publisher to hire an illustrator, they need to see good sample pieces of art appropriate for children’s books. Whether the art is in your portfolio or on your website, each piece needs to tell a story. Anyone looking at it should ask themselves: What just happened? What’s going to happen next? In this workshop, we’ll talk about how illustrators can up the narrative content in their work, both by showing examples and by brainstorming about ways to improve our own work.

Sarah S. Brannen is the award-winning illustrator of over twenty books for children. She wrote and illustrated Bear Needs HelpMadame MartineMadame Martine Breaks the Rules, and Uncle Bobby’s Wedding. Sarah illustrated Seashells: More Than a Home and Feathers: Not Just for Flying, both written by Melissa Stewart. Sarah lives in Massachusetts.

12:00 — 1:00

1:00 — 2:00
Illustrating Board and Novelty Books with Jannie Ho
Illustrating for children’s books goes beyond just picture books. What about for the littlest audience: babies and toddlers? How is it different illustrating for this age group? In this workshop, we will discuss board book formats and page counts; general themes in board books, and what you can have in your portfolio to get art directors noticed. Character design: creating age appropriate characters that are clearly defined for this age group. We will explore the importance of cropping and composition, and concepts vs. stories. Examples of novelty formats such as die cuts, lift-a-flaps, and magnetic pages will generate creative ideas for more than just a book!

2:15 — 3:15
Illustration Portfolio Workshop
with Mary Jane Begin

A portfolio is the delivery system that an illustrator uses to get their work seen, with the ultimate goal of becoming published. Mary Jane will review the elements that comprise the portfolio and how to maximize its potential to connect to editors and publishers. Items such as websites, business cards, mailers, press kits, as well as the physical portfolio and it’s organization will be reviewed both in a slide presentation and with hands-on materials. Resources for creating materials will be provided, as well as a guide to preparing a submission package.

Mary Jane Begin is a Professor in the Illustration Department at Rhode Island School of Design, where she has taught for 27 years. She is an Associate Professor in the Masters in Children’s Book Writing and Illustration Program at Hollis University and a Professor at Lesley University, College of Art and Design. She teaches online courses on color, composition, character development and media with and She is an award-winning illustrator/author of picture books with seven of her titles translated into Chinese, including My Little Pony: Under the Sparkling Sea and The Dragons on Dazzle Island. In 2018, her title Willow Buds, The Tale of Toad and Badger, won the prestigious Bing Xin Children’s Literature Award in China.


Portfolio critiques will be provided by Melia Parslow, Associate Designer for Page Street Publishing AND Mary Jane Begin, professor and professional illustrator. 20 minute sessions cost $50. Spaces are limited.


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