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73726. Publishing houses

Hello my dearest blog readers! How the dickens are you? Isn't 'blog readers' is a dull term? Personally, I quite like 'bloggles', or 'bloggins,' or perhaps (if you were all kindly prepared to don leg-warmers), 'bloggets'...?

Anyway, I hope you're all well and dandy. Things have been barmy, naturally; but a little more so than usual. To give you some indication, I'd say, crazier than a soup sandwich, but not quite as mad as a bag of cats.

I've been working on several illustration jobs at once and have been attempting to fairly price up another couple. I've met up with the Surrey Illustrators (a very fine bunch of people) and I've been down to London to blether at the feet of Harry Potters' people in Bloomsbury.

Incidentally, I know I've spoken about the different 'feels' of each publishing house, but have I mentioned the eccentricity of publishing buildings?

If you lined all the publishing offices up next to eachother you'd have the kind of skyline of which Tim Burton could only dream. What's really great is they're all so unexpected. I always find myself picturing an interview beforehand to try and steady my nerves, but I NEVER get the situation right. I'm half thinking, I might have to envisage a bouncy castle or an icecream van in my mental walk-through next time... just to cover my bases. Publishing houses are all fantastic. They range from shiny, high rises with gated security stations and receptionists, stern and highly armed (with biro's and name badges, naturally), to eccentric tumbledown houses, to Templar's magically warren-y offices (which I'm sure they're short-leasing from a large family of badgers). At the end of Publishing Road, I'm sure there'd be an old, and very esteemed art director that lived in a shoe.

One publisher has wall to wall windowed lifts, so if you're romantic you feel like you're flying, and if you're like me, you feel like you've farted with enough gusto to launch. I'd also note that when visiting said publisher, due to a strategically placed Starbucks below, when travelling higher than second floor, short skirts are to be avoided at all costs. And picking ones' nose is an out and out no-no.

The Bloomsbury offices have THE smallest lift you've ever seen. I'm not joking, it's about a metre and half wide, by a metre deep.... and there's three of us in there.... and we're all the same height. Now, the height thing can be seen one of two ways. With tall people, I tend to be at armpit (or worse still) crotch height. For anyone that's never had the pleasure; introducing yourself when you're eye-to-crotch is something from which it's kind of hard to recover. With people the same size as me, and particularly in a interview type environment, the eye-to-eye thing is always slightly unnerving; you over-analyse your movements until you develop an erratic twitch. On top of that, it's before the interview, so I'm attempting to make small talk AND impress at the same time. On top of THAT, our faces (all three of them) are mere inches apart... I feel like I'm in the Bohemian Rhapsody video. Quick, I think... and twitch, and twitch and think; drop some enlightened phrase on publishing current affairs. Talk apps, talk distribution channels, talk anything but... 'I LIKE HARRY POTTER!' Dear God, when you belt out this inanity, you can only hope you didn't top it off by spitting in anyone's eye or stomping on anyone's foot. And unfortunately, we've still got another three floors to ride...all staring (in extreme close-up) and in palpable silence at my reddening, twitching face.

Thank goodness publishers are a nice breed of human. Whether I'm trying to exit out of the 'entrance' door at Orion, bashing head-long, like a trapped wilderbeast, into the glass doors at Hodder, or babbling incoherantly in Bloomsbury's lift, all of them have been decent enough not to mention it. All I can say is, if they can be this nonchalant at my behaviour though, it does make me think; what on EARTH do the rest of you illustrators get up to????

8 Comments on Publishing houses, last added: 5/20/2010
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73727. Kometen Trailer

Trailer for Kometen, an enchanting iPhone/iPad game created by Swedish artists Niklas Åkerblad, who did the watercolor animation and music, and Erik Svedäng, who was responsible for game design and programming. I purchased the game ($3) based purely on the hand-drawn quality of the artwork and have found it to be a unique and relaxing game experience. The creators describe the gameplay as such: “In short the game is about exploring space to find art, while at the same time learning how to fly around in a graceful way. There isn’t any scoring system or way to lose, instead it’s all about self improvement and judging your own performance.”
(Thanks, Gabe Swarr)

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73728. Cartoon-a-palooza!!!

If you're in the Northampton, MA area this Sunday at 2pm, please join me at the fantastic Academy of Music downtown for Cartoon-A-Palooza!, an afternoon of my animated cartoons to benefit the Forbes Library.It'll be a fun afternoon of Sesame Street, Nickelodeon, & Cartoon Network shorts, plus the full library of animated versions of my books: Leonardo the Terrible Monster, Knuffle Bunny, Knuffle

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73729. The Small, Confident Traveler

I apologize for the terrible quality that is apple's photo booth. I should really invest in a camera now that I don't have my aunt's anymore.

1 Comments on The Small, Confident Traveler, last added: 5/19/2010
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73730. NESCBWI Conference: Jennifer E. Morris

This past weekend I attended the annual regional conference for the New England Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators (aka, NESCBWI). I contribute to 3 blogs, and since I took just 3 workshops I thought I'd share one on each.

Artwork © Jennifer E. Morris

My first workshop was run by Jennifer Morris, entitled "10 Photoshop Techniques for Illustrators". I've met Jen a few times and really like her work so even though I'm a veteran photoshop user I wanted to check it out. She did a fantastic job of presenting useful information clearly. The room was a mix of pros, intermediates, and true beginners and I admired how she handled the range of questions a group like that can pose. Best of all, I picked up a few new Photoshop tricks! I love watching other artists at work too. I know I can see videos all over the internet, but I rarely check them out. Live is so much better.

I highly recommend checking out Jennifer's blog and this page on her website for links to painting demos on her blog. She is very generous to share so much of her process. You'll find both a painterly technique and her scratchboard/chunky technique.

3 Comments on NESCBWI Conference: Jennifer E. Morris, last added: 5/18/2010
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73731. Sunday paintings!

I join Bill Perkins' painting workshop this Sunday. It's a lot of fun!! This is the first time, I learn how to use grey markers to plan a painting. It's so HARD!!! I haven't used a marker for drawings since elementary school. I always see people use grey markers to block out a paintings ... it looks easy ... but actually doing it, it's very challenging.

I don't think I do a very good job with the markers ... in a way, I think I get confused ... but I can understand why it's very useful to plan thing out in marker though ... I will need to practice and get better!!

BTW, my little OWL painting - Serenade from my previous post on March 8, 2010 get selected into the Semi-Permanent book of 2010!! Will post more about the story, once I learn more about the publication date!!

15 Comments on Sunday paintings!, last added: 5/21/2010
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1 Comments on , last added: 5/18/2010
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73733. Pink and Green

Puff Draft by Samax Amen.

2 Comments on Pink and Green, last added: 5/18/2010
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73734. william darby

Read about William Darby, England's first black owner of a circus and his connection to The Beatles... HERE on the josh pincus is crying blog

1 Comments on william darby, last added: 5/18/2010
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73735. City Park by Courtland Lomax

You may remember the Courtland Lomax House of Cats viral we posted last July. Here is his second Swarovski spot, recently released, again using animation to promote their crystal figurines…

Directed by Courtland Lomax
Music by Brian Young
Compositing by Ethan Metzger
Backgrounds and Character Designs by Brigette Barrager
Animation: Jennifer Hager, Jules Soto, Destiny Wood, Matt Pugnetti, Philip Vose and Courtland Lomax.

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73736. A work in progress...

It's been forever; one've the reasons is trying to finish this project. Who would've thought comics would resort to separate levels, talking heads, etc?

3 Comments on A work in progress..., last added: 5/18/2010
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73737. Podcast Episode 35 – Style with Kevin Cross

Like This!

(Illustration by Kevin Cross)

Episode 35 of the Escape From Illustration Island Podcast features a discussion about style with Illustrator Kevin Cross.  Together we explore the overall concept of style, as well as our own recent experiences with reinventing our approach to style.  I also announce the official release date of my new eBook, 15 Steps to Freelance Illustration.

Here are links to some of the things mentioned on the show:

Kevin Cross Illustration
Thomas James Illustration
Cartoon Modern by Amid Amidi

Related Posts:

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73738. Artista Andrea Cánepa gana el premio SWAB - Barcelona

Andrea Cánepa, 2009

Del 13 al 16 de mayo se llevó a cabo la tercera edición de la Feria Internacional de Arte Contemporáneo de Barcelona donde tomaron parte 32 galerías de todo el mundo. El SWAB es un evento dentro de la feria de arte que tuvo su primera presentación en el año 2006 bajo la idea de crear nuevos espacios de oportunidades para las nuevas galerías de actividad contemporánea tanto nacionales e internacionales.

Andrea Cánepa, 2009

Este año el premio SWAB en la categoría dibujo se le otorgó a Andrea Cánepa (Lima, 1980) artista peruana que actualmente reside en España.

Foto referencial: Esta misma obra
fue presentada en otra feria de arte -

Dicho trabajo fue presentado por la Galería Rosa Santos de Valencia (España), presentando también a otros artistas como Mavi Escamilla, Alex Francés, Martín López Lam, Younès Rahmoun, Joan Sebastián, Enrique Zabala

Hay que mencionar que la galería p

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73739. Rescue Equipment

All the rescue story HERE!

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73740. FFTO #10

fortune favors the odd
A somewhat regular series by Sparky Firepants

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73741. Thinking this week's word should be Matador!

For more, visit my blog: http://lisagravesdesign.blogspot.com/

2 Comments on Thinking this week's word should be Matador!, last added: 5/18/2010
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73742. Music Monday - Farewell (a chicken post)

Today, I give you one of my favorite groups - the rock-cellists, Apocalyptica, playing 'Farewell' to my favorite hen.....

She had seemed fine all day, but the following morning found her mysteriously deceased on the floor of the hen house... :-(
(RIP Pearl...)

That only leaves me with two chickens, one of whom is totally broody (which is an exercise in complete futility, given that I have no rooster). It is rumored that you can introduce young chicks to a broody hen and chances are good she will raise them in lieu of her unhatched eggs -

So I found this amazing feed store by the County Fairgrounds - *80* different kinds of chicks!! (full-sized, straight-run, bantys, quail, ducks, geese, turkeys...). I brought home a barred cochin (left), a silver spangeled Hamburg (center) and an another Ameraucana (right).

 Initial introduction attempts just resulted in evil-broody-hen staring balefully at the small interlopers (also pecking. Or completely ignoring...) It was starting to get chilly, and Maleficent was showing no signs of taking over motherly hennish duties -

-so they are spending the night in the studio with me (and a heat lamp). Will give it another try tomorrow...

I miss you Pearl... Farewell...

9 Comments on Music Monday - Farewell (a chicken post), last added: 5/18/2010
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73743. How to Budget Your Animation

Animation Budget

Richard O’Connor, a co-owner of New York-based commercial studio Asterisk Animation, wrote a post yesterday about how to create an animation budget. It’s the first in a series of posts that he intends to write. Budgeting animation isn’t sexy, but it’s nuts-and-bolts knowledge that any student, indie artist, and free-lancer who wants to be successful should understand (and judging from personal acquaintances, few do). Take advantage of Richard’s generosity and pick up some tips from him. You won’t find this valuable information anywhere else on-line.

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73744. The Jennifer DeChiara Literary Agency

The Jennifer DeChiara Literary Agency is a New York City-based full-service literary agency, recently named one of the top 25 literary agencies in the country by Writers Digest.

The agency specializes in children’s literature of all ages — picture books, middle-grade, and young adult — but also represents high-quality adult fiction and non-fiction in traditional and non-traditional arenas.

We work with major publishers such as HarperCollins, Simon & Schuster, Carroll & Graf, etc., as well as audio, web, and electronic publishers where appropriate.  The agency has affiliations with subagents throughout the world, including individual countries in Europe, Eastern Europe,the Far East, and South and Central America.  We also have strong working relationships with several Hollywood agencies.

Stephen Fraser joined the Jennifer DeChiara Literary Agency as an agent in January 2005. He worked most recently at HarperCollins Children’s Books, where he edited a couple of New Jersey’s talented writers, Ann Rinaldi and Dan Gutman.

They say, “Our doors are always open to new writers and illustrators. Currently we are looking for children’s books for every age – picture books, middle-grade, and young adult – and adult fiction and non-fiction in a wide range of genres. If in doubt, just query us.”

Remember, you can meet agents, Tracey Adams, Stephen Barbara, Scott Treimel, Sean McCarthy, Mary Kole, Jill Corocoran, and Marissa Walsh at the New Jersey SCBWI Conference June 4th and 5th.

Talk tomorrow,


Filed under: Agent, children writing, Editor & Agent Info, need to know, Places to sumit, Publishers and Agencies Tagged: Agencies, Agent, Children's Writing, Industry Professionals 2 Comments on The Jennifer DeChiara Literary Agency, last added: 5/18/2010
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73745. Beach Hollidays

Yes..., I'm waiting for summer holidays!
This year I will work as a Lifeguard.

All the story HERE!

6 Comments on Beach Hollidays, last added: 5/20/2010
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73746. Baltimore: Sesame Street by Day, The Wire by Night

Attended Megapolis, the audio arts festival... so much fun drawing all the geeks in their radio/listening/musical glory.
During an audio-dead puppies-exquisite corpse workshop.
Band rockin' out hardcore. METAL!! YEAAAH!
Journey back from Baltimore to NYC... feeling rejuvenated & renewed!
Best sight ever... so, I see a gent on the subway mumbling to himself. He's rehearsing something. He then pulls out an envelope which contains a box which holds... an engagement ring! He was practicing his proposal! Gahhhhhhhhh :) So I sketched him. Best of luck to him.

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73747. Now Offering Virtual Author Visits

Beginning with the 2010-2011 school year, we here at Studio JJK will be offering a Virtual Author Visit program.

Check out all of the info over at www.studiojjk.com/virtualvisits.html. See yah on the Internets!

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73748. New York City

I have been visiting NYC since Saturday, attending Surtex and the National Stationery Show. I will post my run down as I get home and collect my marbles. Until then, please enjoy these silly, non- relevant iPhone pictures.

1 Comments on New York City, last added: 5/19/2010
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73749. Illustration Friday Theme: "Equipment" ( No need for fancy "equipment" )

An illustration I created for a book entitled "Ranji the Baker" 
Also my entry for Illustration Friday's theme "EQUIPMENT"

Illustration Friday is a weekly illustration challenge. 
A topic is posted every Friday and then participants 
have all week to come up with their own interpretation.

9 Comments on Illustration Friday Theme: "Equipment" ( No need for fancy "equipment" ), last added: 5/19/2010
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73750. IF - equipment

For Illustration Friday - yep, when you have a baby you need lots of equipment. Lots and lots of equipment!

18 Comments on IF - equipment, last added: 5/20/2010
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