Illustration Seminar Emma block and Stacie Swift

Before the bank holiday, I took a seminar Insider’s Guide to a Career in Illustration run by two lovely illustrating ladies, Emma Block and Stacie Swift at the gorgous Smug lifestyle store.

I have been a fan of Emma’s illustrations for a quite a while (remember the Lemon Teacake recipe from her Tea & Cake book) and it was lovely to discover a new illustrator in Stacie.

Here are a few of the topics they covered:

  • Portfolios – What should you really have in yours? Quality over quantity.
  • Events, Craft & Trade Fairs – The benefits of attending events such as Top Draw, Pulse, Bologna Children’s Book Fair.
  • Online Tools – social media, your website, networking
  • Your products – sourcing suppliers, wholesale pricing
  • Freelancing – agents, licensing, royalties
  • The ‘boring’ stuff – tax returns, invoicing
  • & more!

Emma and Stacie were really generous sharing their knowledge and answering any questions. I have personally found, there is very little support and business advice in succeeding in the ‘real’ world as a creative professional. Luckily Emma and Stacie have more seminars in the pipeline, delving deeper into more specific areas such as using social media with your illustrating business. Oh, I nearly forgot… you get to eat cake too!

The whole of Campbell Children’s Books department (an imprint of Macmillan) were also at the seminar! Insiders info – they are looking for illustrators interested in board books for very young children at the moment!

– Katy x