Society of
Children's Book Writers
and Illustrators

For Illustrators

Illustration Masterclasses 2019!

Bookings Now Live!

Illustration by Bridget Marzo, inside illustration fromTiz and Ott’s Big Draw.

9 March 2019Writing for Illustrators 2 with Bridget Marzo. This Masterclass offers you the chance to play with writing ‘out of the book’ if not out of the box while giving you a break from finessing your drawing obsessions and explore the wider terrain of visual and narrative. Don’t miss out on what promises to be a creative, productive day! Follow this link to book – Writing for Illustrators 2.

11 May 2019 – The Wonderful World Non-fiction Illustration with natural history author illustrator Helen Ward.

8 June 2019 – Annual Portfolio Review Intensive, for the first time will by a full day event, watch this space as information coming soon!

12 October 2019 – Annual Art Directors Brief

Picturing Words and Writing Pictures

Picture Book Retreat fully booked!

Dates are 12 – 15 July 2019!

Please contact to get on the Waiting List!

(See link below)

Illustration by Viviane Schwarz

Are you ready for a creative weekend for picture book writers and illustrators on the beautiful River Avon in Worcestershire? Ready to wake up each morning and jump into a creative workshop with our faculty to kick-start your writing, explore new techniques and experiment with words and image? Then join us at Holland House to do just those things.

Painting by James Mayhew

Joining us this year are author illustrators James Mayhew and Viv Schwarz. Read more about them on our Picture Book Retreat Booking page. Hope to see you there!

SCBWI BI Biennial Illustration Exhibition


Call for Entries coming soon for 2019!

The next 2019 Biennial Exhibition Competition is in the planning stages though we can let you know that the next juried exhibit will be at the Westminster Reference Library from the 9 December 2019 – 4 January 2020. We are very excited and can’t wait to send out the first call outs for submissions for our next Biennial Exhibition.

exhibition-2017-guestAbove: 2017 guest illustrators, Tim Hopgood,  Pam Smy, Leigh Hodgkinson.

Past news

Past Masterclasses in 2018

12 May 2018  Writing for Illustrators with Maisie Paradise Shearring an international award winning and published illustrator. This ran as a Masterclass in every sense of the word. Attendees produced lots of story ideas and pictures prompted by the writing and drawing exercises Maisie gave us. What was the most fun? All of it! We learned a lot too.

10 March 2018  David McDougall, art director, Harper Collins, led a wonderful masterclass on what kind of portfolio gets you commissioned. As usual, David was very generous with his time and expertise. Read about the masterclass on Words and Pictures, written by Sarah Underwood.

9 June 2018 We had an exciting and fun filled afternoon with Mark Mills (Plum Pudding Illustration Agency) Nghiem Ta (Senior Art Director, Walker Books) and Emily Lamm (Commission Picture Book editor from Hatchette). This year, rather than work in groups beginning with one reviewer, we had a very short introduction to our three, delegates chose the row of tables in front of the reviewer they wanted to see, and each illustrator went up for a 10 minute review, one to one. What was so fun to see, was all the sketching (of each other and the reviewers) and sharing of portfolios going on between everyone waiting to be seen. A wonderful, full and fun day was had by all!

SCBWI Illustrator Meet, Muse and Share!

Our very first Schmooze on the 20 May 2018 in London was a success! It was wonderful hearing from Shelley Ann Jackson about her extensive volunteer experience with SCBWI Texas and her new role as MA Course Leader for the Cambridge Children’s Illustration programme. We’re hoping to see lots more of her and her husband Jeff Jackson, also an author illustrator. We’d like to run more Schmoozes in the future with a social AND informal critique group format.

The Pictures At Play Grand Launch Party and Talk took place on on 28 September, 2017 at the Half Moon Theatre, London. Exhibitors’ books and prints were (and continue to be!) available for sale with some proceeds going to War Child. In the theatre our brilliant guest artists and publishers took part in a panel talk hosted by Bridget Marzo, discussing the different ways they collaborate to make great books.  

Read more about artist events at the Gallery, our guest illustrators and judges, the launch  & talk and see a glimpse of the exhibits  HERE.


Join the SCBWI Illustrator’s Ring Group on Facebook!

Meet other illustrator members, share news, discuss topics and support SCBWI activities for illustrators in our own private discussion group The Illustrator’s Ring. All subscribed British Isles region illustrators are encouraged to join!

SCBWI British Isles Illustrators’ Newsletter

Have the latest news about the Illustration Masterclasses at the House of Illustration, Picture Book Retreat, illustration competitions and other illustrator opportunities delivered directly into your inbox! Email me at  to tell me you want on!