You'll remember Sarah McIntyre's #PicturesMeanBusiness campaign to get illustrators the credit they deserve on book covers and in publishing's metadata labyrinth. Here's my latest take at Thought Catalog and in #FutureChat on McIntyre, a "colourful force of nature" in the bettering of the industry's treatment of its creative personnel. As Charlotte Eyre reported at The Bookseller, children's publisher Nosy Crow is opening a series of illustrator salons, "partly in response to the call for greater recognition for illustrators" led by McIntyre. We're glad to have our regular FutureBook contributor Tom Bonnick here to sketch it out. Take it away, Tom. -- Porter Wagoner
Last week I was enormously pleased to announce a new programme of events for Nosy Crow: we’re launching an Illustrator Salon. Every month, starting from September, we’ll feature a new artist, with a live interview, audience Q&A, book signing, and, of course, drinks.
One of our inspirations for this programme (and its name) was, unsurprisingly, Damian Barr’s phenomenally successful Literary Salon. And another inspiration has been Sarah McIntyre’s #picturesmeanbusiness campaign.
I wanted to make this programme very specifically about illustrators. There are absolutely no shortage of public author events throughout the year, but far fewer (outside of festivals, anyway) dedicated to illustration – and the number becomes vanishingly small once you’ve eliminated those that are aimed at children.
I wanted this programme to have an adult focus – and to give illustrators the same opportunity that authors enjoy, to talk seriously about their work to an audience of peers.
This is what I said to Charlotte Eyre about the Salon:
“I’ve followed the #picturesmeanbusiness campaign with interest, and this Salon is partly in response to the call for greater recognition for illustrators: we wanted to do something that championed individuals and their work, increased visibility for illustrators, and treated illustration as a serious art form in itself (rather than just an afterthought to writing!).”
I have huge admiration for Sarah’s campaign – for her commitment to the cause, and for what she’s already achieved.
Giving illustrators proper credit is something that we are particularly careful about at Nosy Crow.
As Sarah’s campaign has highlighted, there are issues elsewhere in the industry around how data is handled and received at other points in the supply chain, but we will always ensure that we include information about illustrators when we submit title information to retailers, to journalists, to awards committees, and to anyone else who asks for it.
This event series felt like a positive and public way of celebrating the amazing, exciting, inspirational contribution that illustrators make to books.
And the illustration community is such a vibrant and supportive one – online and off – that I have every hope that our Salon will grow and grow.
We’d love to see you there, if you’re interested: our first event is taking place on Monday September 14, at The Book Club on Leonard Street, and features one of my favourite new illustrators – Steven Lenton, illustrator of amazing picture books including Shifty McGifty and Slippery Sam, and Princess Daisy and the Dragon.
Main image - iStockphoto: Anegada
#FutureChat Dolly-Porter illustration by Sarah McIntyre
Shifty McGifty and Slippery Sam cover by illustrator Sam Lenton