Below you can find the most frequently asked questions I get. Do you have a question for me that isn’t answered yet? Ask away! I’ll select questions every now and then to answer and I will share the answers here and in my news letter.
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Frequently asked questions
I studied the Master Children’s Book Illustration at the Cambridge School of Art where I graduated in 2018. Before that I studied Text and Image and Audiovisual Design at the Rietveld Academy in Amsterdam, with a half year exchange at the School of Visual Arts in New York in between.
No, I don’t have an agent and I also don’t hold the key to any secret doors in the publishing world. I’m told that a lot of publishers don’t accept manuscripts directly, without the representation of an agent, However, there are other ways to be noticed. In my case it was studying at a renowned institute, the MA Children’s Book Illustration at the Cambridge School of Art and presenting my work at the stand of my course at the International Children’s Book Fair in Bologna. Besides having made work that resonates with a lot of people, my timing happened to be perfect, as publishers were just on the lookout for picture books about emotions. However, I didn’t plan this beforehand. When trends are noticeable you are likely already behind, as there can be two years between finishing a book and the publication of that same book.
My best advice would be to create work that matters to you personally, be brave and to show it to the world, for example on Instagram or by participating with some of the competitions. Keep showing up and keep learning. For example by following a great program like the one I did.
If you see any books you really like, look at which publishers they come from, and what the background is of the authors and/or illustrators that make them. Read some of the interviews they may have done. Possibly you can take away something from that.
Having all that said, If you draw and make stories every day, you are likely going to get better at it so you can always start there. All you really need is some paper and a pencil, and enough motivation to make it your priority to create the time for it.
I hope I will one day but it will take a while before they will be actual books that you can find in a bookstore, giving the slow pace of picture book making and publishing.