We asked Walker Books, sponsors of the World Illustration Awards 2018 Children’s Books Category, for their advice on how illustrators should approach publishers, what they look for in illustration, and why they support illustration.
Illustration Lizzie Stewart ‘There’s a Tiger in the Garden’, professional winner of the WIA2017 Children’s Books category sponsored by Walker Books
What do you look for in an illustration?
Great illustration tells and asks in equal measure. Illustrations should tell a clear story, communicating emotion, narrative or indeed another type of meaning above and beyond the words they may sit alongside. But there should also be an element of intrigue in the picture, something that draws the eye and invites the viewer to question – what is happening here? What happens next?
What is your advice for up and coming illustrators?
Draw, draw, draw. It’s so important to keep the hand moving – always keep a pen and sketchbook to hand. And observe everything. Inspiration can and should come from the most unexpected places, and it is from these places that you can create something truly unique and original.
Why is it important that the industry supports illustration?
In a world of ubiquitous imagery, it is so easy to take images for granted and, in doing so, reduce them to ephemeral accessories to the everyday. It is important to recognise the achievements of the artists who, in this environment, continue to create examples of living, organic art.
There are great illustrators out there who have dedicated their lives to crafting singular art able to communicate what words cannot. It is so important that we always support and champion these artists.
The deadline to enter the World Illustration Awards is 20 February 2018.