Sensation #1: You get to hear about some people before you meet them in person. They have a presence on the web. Giuseppe Castellano the art director from Penguin Random House does a good job on social media. He also did a great job presenting. He talked about putting your personality into your art and gave information to help us raise the quality of our illustrations. He also gave great advice on web sites and getting your art out there. He was introduced by Shawna Tenney who had previously interviewed Giuseppe on the Oatley Academy podcast, Stories Unbound.
Sensation #2 and #3: Will Terry and Jake Parker presented together with some friendly banter back and forth. They talked about four ways to improve your art. The good thing about Will’s presentation was the visual examples he used to really show what he was talking about. He taught in such a way that you really got it.
Jake Parker put his money where his mouth was. He put us all on snap chat before he started his presentation. Jake has come up with some of the most ingenious ways to use social media. He demonstrated how he does thumbnails and drew a double spread from prompts from the audience. It was great to see his thought process and principles of art as he created the spread.
Giuseppe, Will and Jake participated in critiquing first look. You could see your art flash on the screen and get their first impressions of your art. You learned not only from your own critique but also from the others put up front.
We were excited to have Bob Cross from Gibb Smith, Margaret Weber from Covenant Communications, Mckell G. from Jolly Fish and Richard Ericksen and his wife Gorgeous from Shadow Mountain attend and take a look at the portfolios. There were chances to visit with the other illustrators who attended. There were also chances to ask questions of the presenters. I had things that I needed reminding of and learned things that will improve my illustrations.
It is great for us illustrators to get out of our studios and get around others who are working and creating art. It helps to improve not only our art work but the ways we work. A big thank you to the illustrating committee, Manelle Oliphant, Jennifer Eichelberger and Shawna Tenney, our presenters and to all the illustrators who joined us for the day. Keep on creating.