Friday, November 21, 2014

More Q&A with Elementary Students

One wonderful morning I Skyped from my cozy studio in Brooklyn with students at the Passow Elementary School in Franklin Park, Illinois. Thanks to Reading Specialist, Elizabeth Drasutis, who set up the visit, for sending a packet of the student’s sweet notes, plus a list of questions to answer.

Q: How can you imagine all of the sea creatures?

A: It was easy. By using the photographs I took of the public and of my friends at the actual Mermaid Parade. They made the costumes. I just channeled their great creative energies into my picture book. They made it easy to illustrate 100 + characters featured in the book.

Q: How do you get picked to be the illustrator?

A: I send samples of my illustrations printed on postcards to art directors in the juvenile publishing field. The art is kept in their files. They match an illustrator with an author’s manuscript the publisher had purchased. Or, an agent represents your art and makes portfolio rounds to the publishers.

Questions from the older students:

Q: What do you find challenging about being an author and illustrator.
Art is always fulfilling so I’d say it’s the business end that can be challenging. Such as waiting in-between books. Having to prove my talent at all times to new people. Or, being very organized tracking the constant flow of new people and changes within the field.

My Studio

A: How many days does it take to make a book or an illustration?
Some illustrations are simple and some are complex. It took one month to finish my first book, AT THE BEACH. The art was simple to fit the text.

It can also take two weeks to illustrate one scene. The maps I love to create take a long time to finish.

Detail from a map I illustrated for A CITY IS

All art and images are Copyright Melanie Hope Greenberg except the student art.