The Arkansas SCBWI Conference this past weekend was great. I learned a lot & I got to meet Cheryl McMickle! That was fun--meeting a WW member for the first time. After going through my conference notes, here are a few things that I learned: (1) there's a difference between "commercial" illustrations (illustrations used for educational material) and storybook illustrations. (2) include black & white images in portfolio; (3) include color images in portfolio that have text incorporated in the design (to show artist's understanding of storybook layout); (4) study the market by going to the bookstore, not just the library; (5) when making a book dummy, use a storyboard layout. First image should be opposite of last. Story should have classic arc: causality, linear time, external conflict, single/active protagonist, consistent reality, closed ending. Also, there must be change in the story. There was much, much more at the conference, but too much to cover here.
Anastasia Suen, an author of over 100 childrens books, was very high energy & informative. She offers on line workshops at www.asuen.com/workshops