Poughkeepsie NY SCBWI Conference Notes

Photo is of myself with RACWI's very own Linda Sue Park and Sheila Jarkins. Linda Sue was the keynote speaker and panel participant. As always she was inspirational and gave us words of wisdom.

Because of the critique schedule I was only able to attend one workshop fully enough to share the notes I took but it was a really good one with Art Director Laurent Linn, so here's a summary of what he said....

Laurent is Art Director for Simon and Schuster and his talk was called "The Anatomy of the Picture Book".
He designs Picture Books, Middle Grade and Teen novels, but likes working with illustrators and picture books best.

He talked about the color room, how he proofs color and how the signature, (a large sheet of paper with eight pages on each side), got its name, which was pretty interesting and later became one of several door prize questions!
Apparently, years ago, they printed one page at a time. Each page had to be checked for the color registration then signed for approval. Later the single page simply became known as the signature... Here's the signature boss!... pretty neat!

He named six genres of the PB but said we could come up with many more. The six genres he choose were:
1. Holiday Books
2. Variation on a Folk Tale
3. Discovery of the Child's World
4. Themes For Very Young Children Dealing With a Difficult Situation.
5. Nonfiction Poetry
6. Dog Books

For each genre he gave us an picture book example and demonstrated its own uniqueness, exquisite design and how the words worked within the illustration to make it special..

For the 4th genre Laurent used Karen Katz's PB called Peace
For the fifth one he used Toad by the Road by Joanne Ryder and for Dog Books he used Wild-Wind Dog by Barbara Joosse.
He showed us the cover of Wild-Wind Dog and how the illustrator used background landscape and mountains to define part of the dog head and ears.. The page pacing had strong left to right action and he explained how this helps teach kids to read in the same direction..

He summarized by saying to read 1000 picture books. Read the pictures first, then the words out loud..
Laurent said they are closed to writers but will take illustrator post cards...