Wednesday, 27 July 2011

I Am Small

September 2011 sees the release by Scholastic's Cartwheel Books of "I Am Small"
This book is called "Me" in the UK and is published by Templar Publishing.
"Me" forms part of a series of 4 foil books for the very young. The other title are "Sometimes", "When" and "You".
Here is a lovely review from Publisher's Weekly for the American edition. 25/7/11.

I Am Small
In the manner of her previous small-format books for younger readers, Dodd (Meow Said the Cow) presents a child's-eye view of the world and the child's place in it. The speaker is an engagingly plump and downy young emperor penguin--"The world is fast... and I am small. The ocean is deep... and I am small"--who finishes by addressing the larger emperor penguin on whose feet it nestles: "I may be small, but I can see/ the biggest thing to you... is me!" While Dodd's artwork for older readers is often tongue-in-cheek, these spreads have a serious, almost stately quality. A striking underwater view shows the trails of bubbles left behind by diving penguins, the water's blue darkening to indicate chilly depths; a steep, foil-embossed slope is a mountain down which the penguin chick slides, snow flying off into a somber, slate-gray sky; and an adult penguin cuddles the chick, touching its beak as a crescent moon is reflected in an icy pool. It's a reminder that Dodd isn't all clever British cheek; she's a fine graphic artist as well. Up to age 3. (Sept.)

Monday, 11 July 2011

Some thoughts for new graduates.

Next year will be the twentieth since I left Central Saint Martin's.
I have been thinking about the differences between graduating in the early 1990's and now.

We have just been through a very tough recession as we had back in 1992. When I started at Central Saint Martin's in 1988 there were long lists of jobs for graduates on the head-of-department's door. By 1992 that list had dwindled to virtually nothing.

My first commission upon leaving came from "Guide Patrol Magazine" and paid the princely sum of £60. I was so pleased to get this work, as it represented the second piece of published work in my portfolio.
As soon as graduated I began the exhausting process of making appointments and taking my portfolio around to magazines, newspapers, advertising agencies and anybody else who would see me. I tried to make 10 appointments a week. I listened very carefully to and advice received from the people I saw, and tried to apply it intelligently. I even went to New York and visited companies over there.

When I look back at my 22 year old self, I admire her guts!

Gradually the commissions started building, but this didn't happen over night.  I took on a shared studio and finally had the great luck of finding my fabulous agent, Eunice McMullen. It was at that point that things really began to take off for me.

Today's graduates are so much more media savvy. They use blogs, websites and all that the internet has to offer. This is fantastic, but if I had advice for newly qualified illustrators, it would be do not expect the world to come to you; to keep knocking on the door; listen carefully to advice from people who you respect and finally, do not take no for an answer.