Society of
Children's Book Writers
and Illustrators

PICTURES AT PLAY, Biennial Exhibition 2017 in Collaboration with Half Moon Theatre

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Date(s) - 28/09/2017

Half Moon Theatre
43 White Horse Road - London,


The first ever SCBWI Biennial Illustration Exhibition 2017

6 September – 22 December 2017

The Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators presents some of the best of a wide range of genres in children's book illustration from across the British Isles at the fabulous new space of the 

Half Moon Theatre Gallery

(open Monday to Friday 10am-6pm, Saturday 10am-4.30pm)


A limited number of fine art giclée prints* of the exhibits, and books by exhibitors are for sale at Half Moon from the Grand Launch Party and Talk on 28 September, 2017 until it ends on 22 December, 2017. First come, first served!

*Prints will be sold at a fixed price of £45 unframed or £65 framed.  10% of each print sold will go to the charity War Child.


Grand Launch Party and Talk

28 September, 2017, 5:30 – 8:30 pm

Come along with your friends, partners and kids, meet publising industry professionals, view diverse and fabulous art  – and get your books and prints signed!

We'll raise a glass to the artists, and around 7:30pm we'll move to the adjoining theatre where our brilliant guest artists and publishing panel will discuss the different ways they work together to make great books.


Meet the Illustrators!

GuestIllustrators grouped photo

From left to right: Pam Smy, Leigh Hodgkinson,  Tim Hopgood

Joining the work of our guest illustrators and former SCBWI speakers, Leigh Hodgkinson, Tim Hopgood and Pam Smy you will see new work by SCBWI members from all over the British Isles – established professional artist-authors as well as some new names:  

Jan Barger, Sam BoughtonJoanne ByattTed Chaplin, Jenny Duke, Louise Gardner,  Robert GlennyHoward Gray, Rebecca Elliott, Sally KindbergRachel Lovatt, Layn MarlowBridget MarzoLeila Nabih, Vanya Nastanlieva, Polly NoakesAnne-Marie Perks, John Shelley and Julia Woolf


Free Artist Mini-Meetings

Throughout the exhibition there will be short free sessions with exhibitors (for times see list below) who will be happy to chat or draw and sign their book and prints.    

Watch this space for more info including artists to add to these times below!

Sat 30 Sep, 12pm & 1.15pmBridget Marzo (Tiz and Ott’s Big Draw)
Sat 14 Oct, 11.15am & 12.45pmJo Byatt (Busy Little World series)
Sat 28 Oct, 12pm & 1.15pmJohn Shelley (Magic for Sale, Will’s Words)
Sat 11 Nov, 12pm and 2pmJulia Woolf (Lazy catGiraffe on a Bicycle)
Sat 25 Nov, 12pm & 1.15pmPam Smy (Thornhill) and Polly Noakes (The Very Long Sleep)

NoteMany of the exhibitors will also be running drawing and story sessions at the Half Moon Winter Arts Fair on Saturday 2 December

Pictures at Play runs from 6 September – 22 December at Gallery @ Half Moon during the theatre opening hours: Monday – Friday 10am-6pm, Saturday 10am-4.30pm. 


Meet our illustrious industry judges!

three-up-jurorsFrom left to right: Ness Wood (David Fickling Books) Peter Marley (OUP ) Louise Jackson (Walker Books)


Ness Wood is a book designer and art director, lecturer, published author and student of design history. Her wide-ranging accomplishments in both practical design and academia serve as a solid foundation for all her work. As a freelance art director of many award-winning books, she has worked for major publishers including Faber & Faber, David Fickling Books, and Penguin Random House. Ness gives lectures on book design, how picture books work, and what a designer does and she used to teach at University of Brighton. She is a portfolio consultant for the MA in Children’s Book Illustration at Cambridge School of Art, where she also runs the Summer School and Conference. Ness is known for her encouraging, straight-forward and collaborative approach with both illustrators and students.

Peter Marley

Peter Marley, commissioning editor at Oxford University Press describes himself as a creative and strategic publishing professional with fourteen years’ experience in commissioning and editorial roles; with particular expertise in picture-book and pre-school publishing, licensed-character brands, novelty formats, and IP development.

Louise Jackson

Louise Jackson is Deputy Creative Director at Walker Books, and has worked in children’s publishing for over 25 years. She works across the illustrated list at Walker designing baby books, picture books, non-fiction, fiction and pop-up books.


How did this exhibition come about? 

With the tremendous support of the Half Moon Theatre and Gallery in East London, three SCBWI volunteers invited members in the British Isles region to submit sequential narrative illustrations for books or projects aimed at children and young people created within the last two years. 

All work was judged anonymously by top industry judges and the Half Moon Director Chris Elwell. Judges aimed to select 2 narrative illustrations reserving the option of choosing only one – from a maximum of 2 books or projects per illustrator. 

Key considerations were a high standard of execution and for the exhibition as a whole to achieve a diverse spread of work with strong and original narrative content.


Our sponsors

SCBWI would like to thank the sponsors for their support. SCBWI is a non-profit organization
and does not endorse any products or services provided by external companies.

The exhibition has been kindly organized with the support of Chris, Stephen and everyone at Half Moon, Adam and Nick, the fabulous fine art printers at Jealous, and all the volunteer illustrators who took time off their own work to make this a reality –   and make it possible for SCBWI in turn to support War Child.

Half Moon WarChild-logo-2Jealous-logo-2


SCBWI reserves the right to include accepted entries for further possible exhibitions up to October 2018.  Exhibitors will be informed if so.