How we first meet

TASK: Find an Australian Illustrator

I wanted to utilise an Australian illustrator for our next chapter book.

Very fortunately I was introduced to Mariko Francis through ‘a friend of a friend'.

Mariko and I hit it off straightaway and started collaborating late in 2014.

While Mariko is based in Melbourne and I am in Brisbane this did not slow the flow of creativity between us.

The wonders of modern technology and Basecamp (my favourite project management tool, now in my 10th year of use).

So what does it take to get those words and illustations on a page that makes sense?

Here is a an overivew of the work that Mariko and I did to bring the illustrations to you.

We began our journey with Mariko reading the manuscript.

Mariko wanted to interpret the words on the page as well as ensuring that all members of the family were given the opportunity to show their personality.

I supplied a number of family snap shots so that we could have a conversation about who we are as well as talking through a number of the intricacies of the story.

Then I gave Mariko free rein to assess how she would capture the manuscript through her own paradigm.

The end result was something that we are both happy with. One of my huge joys with publishing is seeing an illustrator’s perspective of the manuscript. This brings in a new facet to the story. It also helps to polish any last inconsistencies in the story.

Sign up with our monthly newsletter to hear what Mariko had to say about the process and how she balances her life challenges on a daily basis.

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