In February this year our second year students made a visit to Seven Stories – National Centre for Children’s Books. This fabulous resource had both staff and students melting with delight as they oozed over original artwork for illustrations, sketchbooks and dummy books from the archive collection held at the centre.
The purpose of the visit was to study the process behind producing a picture book, looking at working with a writer, developing characters and habitats for those characters. The dummy book is vital part of the process and really exciting to see, exploring the pace and rhythm of storytelling as an illustrator plans out the pages.
Back in the studio the students were asked to design their own picture book taking the idea of home as their starting point and creating a story with a difficult social issue at the start of it. Some of the complex topics covered included parents with post traumatic stress syndrome, childhood obesity and the destruction of natural habitats for wildlife.