Elizabeth Rose Stanton: True Confessions of a Picture Book Illustrator, Part 2

My guest blog post from last year revealed my True Confessions of a Picture Book Illustrator, so I thought I’d pick it up where I left off since, I must confess, I have more…and they’re true!

True Confession #5
I’m a chiseler.

For me, when it comes to making picture books, it’s every bit about the ART of writing as it is the ART of illustrating. I liken it to sculpting: I start with a big block of words, then begin chiseling away at them. If I whack away carefully, and long enough, the story takes shape!

It’s also a great way to deal with writer’s block (pun intended).

Writer's Block

True Confession #6a
I have a paint problem.

It’s a bit sobering to realize my supply of watercolors will probably outlive me.


True Confession #6b
I also have a colored pencil problem.

And I confess have even more that are in boxed sets, but I didn’t want to embarrass myself.

pencil problem

True Confession #6c
AND I have a sketchbook problem:
I realized recently just how many sketchbooks I have going at the same time, and they’re all different. I don’t think this means much of anything, but I sure know about different kinds of sketchbooks. Don’t get me started on watercolor paper!

Stanton sketchbook

True Confession #7
I have terrible illustrator-envy.

My list is vast and includes, and is by no means limited to, the likes of Sophie Blackall, Lisbeth Zwerger, Barbara McClintock, and Helen Oxenbury, and historically (and unabashedly): Beatrix Potter, Esther Averill, Jesse Wilcox Smith and John R Neil. At every turn, I discover someone else whose work I am drawn to and inspired by.

Lisbeth Zwerger, The Bremen Town Musicians

And this of course feeds into my compulsion to study said envied-ones, and this leads me to riffdoodling (True Confession #4), which is a great way to work on your skills as an illustrator.

And finally, I have to confess:
I’m humbled and honored to be back at the Highlights Foundation for the Illustration Intensive with two illustrators I have long envied and been inspired by: Mike Curato and Matthew Cordell! Not to mention creative director extraordinaire, Patti Ann Harris, and our capable TA, artist Merrill Rainey.

Come join us! We can chisel words and play with paint and pencils and paper and MORE!

About Elizabeth Rose Stanton:
Instagram: @elizabethrosestanton
Twitter: @ElizRoseStanton

Books by Elizabeth Rose Stanton:
Simon & Schuster Paula Wiseman Books
Henny (2014)
Peddles (2016)
Bub (2018)
Cowie (2020)

Posted on: April 21, 2018

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