BookTrust Best New Illustrators Award

The Booktrust Best New Illustrators Award, which was held in 2008 and 2011, celebrated the best rising talent in the field of children’s illustration.

BookTrust Best New Illustrators Award

In each year, the prize was given to ten emerging illustrators whose work demonstrated remarkable creative flair, artistic skill and boundless imagination.

The Award was established to raise the profile of emerging picture book illustration, as part of the wider Big Picture Campaign. Since the 2008 Awards, the sales of picture books have demonstrated healthy growth, despite a challenging period for bookselling.

2011 awards

The BookTrust Best New Illustrators Award 2011 was judged by then Children's Laureate Anthony Browne; Antonia Byatt, director of Literature Strategy at Arts Council England; author-illustrator Lauren Child; Illustration Cupboard founder John Huddy; and author-illustrator Ken Wilson-Max.

The ten winners were announced at a special ceremony at the Illustration Cupboard and their work was displayed there, at Foyles' flagship store in Charing Cross Road, and at the Free Word Centre before being exhibited in a nationwide tour across 2011 and 2012.

Anthony Browne said:

'Sitting on the panel for the 2011 Booktrust Best New Illustrators Award has been enormously exciting. In the judging meeting colour popped out at us, detail begged to be pored over, wonderful characters bounded through the pages and words and pictures left enough imagination fuelling gaps in meaning to make us want to instantly revisit them!
'As a panel we were awed by the sheer range of styles and were thrilled to see how both classic and modern approaches are being successfully harnessed to bring children and adults alike some of the most innovative, fresh and skilled illustration being published today. When we had finally reached our decision we were left with a palpable sense that these ten are the illustration stars of the future.'

Discover more about the winners and see galleries of their illustrations below:

Alice Melvin


Alice Melvin

Alice Melvin is an illustrator and designer based in Edinburgh, Scotland. Her work is inspired by her love of paper, print and decorative arts. Animals, birds, pattern and text occur frequently in her work - along with the odd teapot. Integral to a lot of her work is the making process and she loves working on products with an interactive element such as the 'cut out and make' cards and kits she has designed.

Alice trained in printing, and her illustrations are hand screen printed. She draws the images in pen and ink on paper and then scans them into the computer. She then decides which colours she wants and separates them out into different layers, which are put onto a very fine screen photographically. The image is then built up by pulling the different colours through the mesh one by one.

Alice Melvin's illustrations

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From Counting Birds by Alice Melvin
From The High Street by Alice Melvin
From The High Street by Alice Melvin
From The High Street by Alice Melvin
From Counting Birds by Alice Melvin

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From The High Street by Alice Melvin

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From The High Street by Alice Melvin

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From The High Street by Alice Melvin

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Chris Haughton


Chris Haughton

Chris Haughton is an Irish illustrator living in London. He illustrates regularly for the Guardian and other publications. He has worked for several large national and international advertising campaigns, and created murals in London, Dublin and Tokyo.

He was listed in Time magazine's 'DESIGN 100' for the work he undertook for Fair Trade clothing company People Tree. A Bit Lost (Walker Books) was his debut picture book.

Chris Haughton's illustrations

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From A Bit Lost by Chris Haughton
From A Bit Lost by Chris Haughton
A Bit Lost by Chris Haughton in progress
A Bit Lost by Chris Haughton in progress
From Oh No George by Chris Haughton
From Oh No George by Chris Haughton
From A Bit Lost by Chris Haughton

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From A Bit Lost by Chris Haughton

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A Bit Lost by Chris Haughton in progress

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A Bit Lost by Chris Haughton in progress

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From Oh No George by Chris Haughton

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From Oh No George by Chris Haughton

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Claudia Boldt


Claudia Boldt

Claudia Boldt was born in Germany but now lives in London. She attended the Glasgow School of Art, and then Kingston University, London, where she graduated with her Masters in Illustration in 2007 - the same year she founded Cloud Cuckoo Studio with her fellow illustrator Katharina Koall. Their clients have included The Savoy Hotel and Waterstones.

Claudia - whose work has been exhibited in London, Zurich, Berlin and Bologna - began with screen printing and linocuts, but she couldn't get the effect she wanted. She then found a way to combine Indian inks and line drawing by scanning them into the computer and building up the layers like a collage, but she likes the edges of her drawings to be natural so doesn't cut them out on the computer. She often has 20 versions of an illustration after this process and has to decide on which is the best one.

Claudia Boldt's illustrations

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From Greedy Girl by Claudia Boldt
From Herr Erwin und Sein Blauer by Claudia Boldt
An illustration by Claudia Boldt
From Stargazers, Skyscrapers and Extraordinary Sausages by Claudia Boldt
From Uugghh! by Claudia Boldt
From Greedy Girl by Claudia Boldt

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From Herr Erwin und Sein Blauer by Claudia Boldt

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An illustration by Claudia Boldt

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From Stargazers, Skyscrapers and Extraordinary Sausages by Claudia Boldt

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From Uugghh! by Claudia Boldt

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Joe Berger


Joe Berger

Joe Berger - who was World Book Day 2010's official illustrator - has been drawing for as long as he can remember. He grew up loving books and the thought of giving children the same excitement he felt from reading is a huge part of his inspiration. He has a background in animation and illustrates a weekly comic strip in the Guardian.

Joe's illustrations are hand drawn with pencil, pen or wax crayon and then scanned into the computer, where he adds colour. Before using the computer he found colouring difficult. He explains that using the computer you can make mistakes and correct them - and once you've got used to this freedom, you can't go back!

Joe Berger's illustrations

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From Bridget Fidget by Joe Berger
From Dinglebangs by Joe Berger
From Earth to Clunk by Joe Berger
From Escape by Joe Berger
From Manners Mash Up by Joe Berger
From Bridget Fidget by Joe Berger

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From Dinglebangs by Joe Berger

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From Earth to Clunk by Joe Berger

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From Escape by Joe Berger

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From Manners Mash Up by Joe Berger

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Katie Cleminson


Katie Cleminson

Katie Cleminson gained her foundation diploma in Art and Design at Falmouth College before studying Illustration for Children's Publishing at the North Wales School of Art, where she graduated with a First in the summer of 2007.

Katie works with inks, charcoal and Photoshop and loves the work of Lane Smith and Jackson Pollock. She's drawn to nostalgic items like gramophones, typewriters, pipes and bowler hats, which sometimes turn up in her work.

Katie Cleminson's illustrations

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From Box of Tricks by Katie Cleminson
From Box of Tricks by Katie Cleminson
From Box of Tricks by Katie Cleminson
From Eat Up by Katie Cleminson
From Wake Up by Katie Cleminson
From Box of Tricks by Katie Cleminson

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From Box of Tricks by Katie Cleminson

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From Box of Tricks by Katie Cleminson

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From Eat Up by Katie Cleminson

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From Wake Up by Katie Cleminson

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Kevin Waldron


Kevin Waldron

Kevin Waldron was born in Dublin and, after graduating with a degree in graphic design, he travelled for a year and then moved to London where he studied for an MA in Illustration at Kingston University. After deciding that children's book illustration was for him, Kevin found a studio in central London where he works with other illustrators.

He now lives in New York and works with gouache, pen and ink (he broke lots of nibs making the pink scratches you see on the hippo in Tiny Little Fly!), charcoal, whatever is lying around and whatever he can use to get the texture he is after. Sometimes this involves placing the paper on the cement ground in the studio and drawing with charcoal or a heavy pencil. Then he scans it in and adjust the colours on the computer, using it like a screen printer.

Kevin Waldron's illustrations

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From Tiny Little Fly by Kevin Waldron
From Tiny Little Fly by Kevin Waldron
Tiny Little Fly by Kevin Waldron in progress
Tiny Little Fly by Kevin Waldron in progress
From Tiny Little Fly by Kevin Waldron

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From Tiny Little Fly by Kevin Waldron

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Tiny Little Fly by Kevin Waldron in progress

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Tiny Little Fly by Kevin Waldron in progress

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Levi Pinfold


Levi Pinfold

Levi Pinfold was born in the Forest of Dean. His love of stories, painting and the work of authors and illustrators such as Maurice Sendak, Alan Lee, Roald Dahl and Dave McKean led him to study Illustration at the University College Falmouth, where he developed narrative illustrations in his own style; a stylised realism.

Levi - who lives in Cornwall, writes, and plays banjo and guitar when no one else is looking - can take from one to three weeks on each illustration as he has loved detailed images from childhood. He uses a mixture of materials, from watercolours to gouache and tempera.

Levi Pinfold's illustrations

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From Black Dog by Levi Pinfold
From Black Dog by Levi Pinfold
From Storyworld by Levi Pinfold
From The Django by Levi Pinfold
From The Django by Levi Pinfold
From Black Dog by Levi Pinfold

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From Black Dog by Levi Pinfold

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From Storyworld by Levi Pinfold

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From The Django by Levi Pinfold

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From The Django by Levi Pinfold

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Salvatore Rubbino


Salvatore Rubbino

Salvatore Rubbino grew up near the Arsenal Stadium in Highbury in North London, although he says this didn't make him any better at football...

He studied printmaking at art college where he discovered that you could think about drawing in lots of different ways. Later on at the Royal College of Art he studied illustration, and in 2005 was shortlisted for the Victoria and Albert Museum Illustration Awards for a series of paintings set in New York. His first picture book, A Walk in New York, charts the adventure of a walk through the Big Apple.

Salvatore Rubbino's illustrations

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From A Walk in New York by Salvatore Rubbino
From A Walk in New York by Salvatore Rubbino
From A Walk in New York by Salvatore Rubbino
From A Walk in New York by Salvatore Rubbino

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From A Walk in New York by Salvatore Rubbino

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From A Walk in New York by Salvatore Rubbino

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Sara Ogilvie


Sara Ogilvie

Sara Ogilvie creates award-winning art which has been exhibited across the UK and abroad.

Working as a freelance illustrator Sara creates images for editorial, design, publishing and advertising. She is the illustrator of many books including Dogs Don't Do Ballet, Rhinos Don't Eat Pancakes and The Worst Princess.

Sara Ogilvie's illustrations

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From Dogs Don't Do Ballet by Sara Ogilvie
From Dogs Don't Do Ballet by Sara Ogilvie
From Dogs Don't Do Ballet by Sara Ogilvie
From Dogs Don't Do Ballet by Sara Ogilvie
Dogs Don't Do Ballet by Sara Ogilvie in progress
Dogs Don't Do Ballet by Sara Ogilvie in progress
Rhinos Don't Eat Pancakes by Sara Ogilvie in progress
From Rhinos Don't Eat Pancakes by Sara Ogilvie
From Rhinos Don't Eat Pancakes by Sara Ogilvie
Rhinos Don't Eat Pancakes by Sara Ogilvie in progress
Rhinos Don't Eat Pancakes by Sara Ogilvie in progress
Rhinos Don't Eat Pancakes by Sara Ogilvie in progress
From The Wizard of Oz by Sara Ogilvie
From Dogs Don't Do Ballet by Sara Ogilvie

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From Dogs Don't Do Ballet by Sara Ogilvie

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From Dogs Don't Do Ballet by Sara Ogilvie

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From Dogs Don't Do Ballet by Sara Ogilvie

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Dogs Don't Do Ballet by Sara Ogilvie in progress

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Dogs Don't Do Ballet by Sara Ogilvie in progress

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Rhinos Don't Eat Pancakes by Sara Ogilvie in progress

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From Rhinos Don't Eat Pancakes by Sara Ogilvie

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From Rhinos Don't Eat Pancakes by Sara Ogilvie

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Rhinos Don't Eat Pancakes by Sara Ogilvie in progress

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Rhinos Don't Eat Pancakes by Sara Ogilvie in progress

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Rhinos Don't Eat Pancakes by Sara Ogilvie in progress

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From The Wizard of Oz by Sara Ogilvie

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Viviane Schwarz


Viviane Schwarz

Viviane Schwarz is the author-illustrator of the highly acclaimed picture books There Are Cats in this Book and There Are No Cats in this Book, both of which were shortlisted for the Kate Greenaway Medal (2009, 2012). She also illustrates picture books by her friend Alexis Deacon and their title A Place to Call Home was shortlisted for the Roald Dahl Funny prize in 2011.

Three Things You Might Not Know About Me (by Viviane Schwarz):

  1. I always wear lipstick for difficult work, because it makes me feel more serious. Sometimes I wear it on my nose.
  2. There are eight pet birds flying around in my house.
  3. I don't put my really scary ideas into picture books; instead, I write long ghost novels, which I keep in a box.

Viviane Schwarz's illustrations

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From A Place to Call Home by Viviane Schwarz
From The Sleepwalkers by Viviane Schwarz
From The Sleepwalkers by Viviane Schwarz
From A Place to Call Home by Viviane Schwarz

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From The Sleepwalkers by Viviane Schwarz

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From The Sleepwalkers by Viviane Schwarz

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2008 awards

The BookTrust Best New Illustrators Award 2011 was judged by chair Nicolette Jones; author Malorie Blackman; Antonia Byatt, director of Literature Strategy at Arts Council England; author-illustrator Anthony Browne; and Illustration Cupboard founder John Huddy.

The ten winners were announced by Children's Laureate 2007-2009 Michael Rosen at a special ceremony at the Children's Book Fair in Bologna.

Nicolette Jones said:

'We were looking for originality, draughtsmanship, and for illustrators who understood how to use the relationship between words and text in a picture book.
'The final choice demonstrated skill in a variety of styles and different media, so there should be something here for readers of all tastes to enjoy. And the future of children's illustration looks encouraging.'

Find out which illustrators were honoured and see galleries of their work below:

David Lucas


David Lucas

David Lucas was born in Middlesbrough and grew up in Hackney, in east London. His stories are a mix of fairytale and autobiography, and his aim in all his work is to communicate his belief that the world is a magical place.

As a child he enjoyed drawing and writing, and he went on to study at St Martin's School of Art and then the Royal College of Art. In his spare time, he enjoys football, cooking, and history.

David Lucas's illustrations

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From Halibut Jackson by David Lucas
From Halibut Jackson by David Lucas
From Halibut Jackson by David Lucas
From Nutmeg by David Lucas
From Nutmeg by David Lucas
From The Robot and the Bluebird by David Lucas
From The Robot and the Bluebird by David Lucas
From The Robot and the Bluebird by David Lucas
From Whale by David Lucas
From Whale by David Lucas
From Whale by David Lucas
From Halibut Jackson by David Lucas

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From Halibut Jackson by David Lucas

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From Halibut Jackson by David Lucas

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From Nutmeg by David Lucas

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From Nutmeg by David Lucas

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From The Robot and the Bluebird by David Lucas

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From The Robot and the Bluebird by David Lucas

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From The Robot and the Bluebird by David Lucas

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From Whale by David Lucas

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From Whale by David Lucas

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From Whale by David Lucas

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Vicky White


Vicky White

Vicky White worked as a zookeeper looking after the great apes at Chester Zoo for six years - but she couldn't stop drawing them! She went on to study illustration at Blackpool and the Fylde School of Art.

She has illustrated Ape and Can We Save the Tiger? by Martin Jenkins and now lives in Surrey. 

Vicky White's illustrations

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From Ape by Vicky White
From Can We Save the Tiger by Vicky White
From Ape by Vicky White

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From Can We Save the Tiger by Vicky White

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Alexis Deacon


Alexis Deacon

Alexis Deacon graduated from the University of Brighton, where he studied Illustration, gaining a first class honours degree.

His book Beegu was a New York Times Book Review Best Illustrated Book of the Year and shortlisted for the Kate Greenaway Medal. Alexis lives in London.

Alexis Deacon's illustrations

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From Beegu by Alexis Deacon
From While You Were Sleeping by Alexis Deacon
From Beegu by Alexis Deacon

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From While You Were Sleeping by Alexis Deacon

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Polly Dunbar


Polly Dunbar

Polly Dunbar studied illustration at Brighton Art School and now lives and works in London. Author and illustrator of Penguin, Dog Blue and Flyaway Katie, she thinks that colour is a brilliant way to cheer yourself up and whenever she's feeling grey, she puts on her best pink frock and paints!

Polly is the daughter of the distinguished author Joyce Dunbar, with whom she collaborated on the picture book Shoe Baby. She is also the illustrator of My Dad's a Birdman, written by David Almond, and Here's a Little Poem, an anthology of poems for very young children. She lives and works in Brighton.

Polly Dunbar's illustrations

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An illustration by Polly Dunbar
An illustration by Polly Dunbar
An illustration by Polly Dunbar
From Penguin by Polly Dunbar
From Penguin by Polly Dunbar
From Penguin by Polly Dunbar
An illustration by Polly Dunbar

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An illustration by Polly Dunbar

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An illustration by Polly Dunbar

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From Penguin by Polly Dunbar

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From Penguin by Polly Dunbar

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From Penguin by Polly Dunbar

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Lisa Evans


Lisa Evans

Lisa Evans has worked as an illustrator for a number of years, working on projects as varied as children's literature and advertising campaigns.

The Flower, written by John Light, was her first children's book, and she has also illustrated The Nutcracker, retold by Emma Goldhawk.

Lisa Evans' illustrations

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An illustration by Lisa Evans
'Animals' by Lisa Evans
'Sophie in Silver' by Lisa Evans
'Star Belly Book' by Lisa Evans
'The Keepers' by Lisa Evans
From The Nutcracker by Lisa Evans
From The Nutcracker by Lisa Evans
From The Nutcracker by Lisa Evans
From The Nutcracker by Lisa Evans
From The Snow Princess by Lisa Evans
From The Snow Princess by Lisa Evans
From The Snow Princess by Lisa Evans
From The Snow Princess by Lisa Evans
An illustration by Lisa Evans

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'Animals' by Lisa Evans

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'Sophie in Silver' by Lisa Evans

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'Star Belly Book' by Lisa Evans

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'The Keepers' by Lisa Evans

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From The Nutcracker by Lisa Evans

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From The Nutcracker by Lisa Evans

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From The Nutcracker by Lisa Evans

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From The Nutcracker by Lisa Evans

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From The Snow Princess by Lisa Evans

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From The Snow Princess by Lisa Evans

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From The Snow Princess by Lisa Evans

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From The Snow Princess by Lisa Evans

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Emily Gravett


Emily Gravett

Emily Gravett is twice winner of the CILIP Kate Greenaway Medal and the Nestlé Children's Book Prize Bronze Award for Wolves and Little Mouse's Big Book Of Fears.

An author-illustrator of unique talent and skill, she has a host of other award-winning and critically acclaimed books to her name, including Orange Pear Apple Bear, Monkey and Me, The Odd Egg and Blue Chameleon. Emily lives in Brighton with her family.

Emily Gravett's illustrations

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From Orange Pear Apple Bear by Emily Gravett
From Meerkat Mail by Emily Gravett
From Monkey and Me by Emily Gravett
From Wolves by Emily Gravett
From Orange Pear Apple Bear by Emily Gravett

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From Meerkat Mail by Emily Gravett

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From Monkey and Me by Emily Gravett

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From Wolves by Emily Gravett

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Mini Grey


Mini Grey

Mini Grey was given her name after being born in a Mini in a car park in South Wales. After taking a foundation Course in Fine Art, she studied for an English degree at UCL, then worked as a theatre designer and primary teacher before studying for an MA in sequential design at Brighton University.

Her first picture book for children, Egg Drop - a surreal story of an egg that dreams of being able to fly - was published in 2002. It established her as a visually exciting illustrator of detailed, colourful artwork and a highly accomplished storyteller, who often narrates from an unusual point of view, such as that of the pea in Kate Greenaway-shortlisted The Pea and the Princess; the biscuit in Nestlé Smarties Gold Prize-winning Biscuit Bear; and the spoon in Kate Greenaway-winning The Adventures of the Dish and the Spoon. Traction Man is Here won the 2005 Boston Horn Book Award, while Jim was shortlisted for the CILIP Kate Greenaway Medal.

Mini Grey's illustrations

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From Biscuit Bear by Mini Grey
From Biscuit Bear by Mini Grey
From The Adventures of the Dish and the Spoon by Mini Grey
From The Adventures of the Dish and the Spoon by Mini Grey
From Traction Man is Here by Mini Grey
From Biscuit Bear by Mini Grey

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From Biscuit Bear by Mini Grey

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From The Adventures of the Dish and the Spoon by Mini Grey

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From The Adventures of the Dish and the Spoon by Mini Grey

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From Traction Man is Here by Mini Grey

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Oliver Jeffers


Oliver Jeffers

As a picture book creator, Oliver Jeffers has been the recipient of some of children's books' highest accolades, including the Nestle Gold Medal for Lost and Found and the Irish Picture Book of the Year for The Incredible Book Eating Boy.

Other award-winning titles include The Way Back Home, which was shortlisted for the Kate Greenaway medal. An animated film of Oliver's book Lost and Found won a BAFTA for Best Animation in 2009. Oliver was born in Belfast but now lives in New York City.

Oliver Jeffers' illustrations

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From Lost and Found by Oliver Jeffers
From Lost and Found by Oliver Jeffers
From The Amazing Book Eating Boy by Oliver Jeffers
From The Amazing Book Eating Boy by Oliver Jeffers
From The Great Paper Caper by Oliver Jeffers
From The Great Paper Caper by Oliver Jeffers
From The Heart and the Bottle by Oliver Jeffers
From The Heart and the Bottle by Oliver Jeffers
From The Way Back Home by Oliver Jeffers
From The Way Back Home by Oliver Jeffers
From To Catch A Star by Oliver Jeffers
From To Catch A Star by Oliver Jeffers
From Up and Down by Oliver Jeffers
From Up and Down by Oliver Jeffers
From Lost and Found by Oliver Jeffers

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From Lost and Found by Oliver Jeffers

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From The Amazing Book Eating Boy by Oliver Jeffers

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From The Amazing Book Eating Boy by Oliver Jeffers

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From The Great Paper Caper by Oliver Jeffers

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From The Great Paper Caper by Oliver Jeffers

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From The Heart and the Bottle by Oliver Jeffers

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From The Heart and the Bottle by Oliver Jeffers

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From The Way Back Home by Oliver Jeffers

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From The Way Back Home by Oliver Jeffers

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From To Catch A Star by Oliver Jeffers

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From To Catch A Star by Oliver Jeffers

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From Up and Down by Oliver Jeffers

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From Up and Down by Oliver Jeffers

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Catherine Rayner


Catherine Rayner

Award-winning author and illustrator Catherine Rayner was born in Harrogate and now lives in Edinburgh. She has a BA Hons in Visual Communication and Illustration from Leeds College of Art and Edinburgh College of Art.

Much of her inspiration – and occasionally modelling! – for her illustration comes from her pets: her horse Shannon, guinea pig Marvin, dog Ellie, cat Ena and goldfish, Bruce. However, animals of a slightly larger kind were the inspiration for her first picture book, Augustus and His Smile – Catherine drew many of her initial sketches of him whilst watching the tigers at Edinburgh Zoo.

 

Catherine Rayner's illustrations

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From Augustus and His Smile by Catherine Rayner
From Augustus and His Smile by Catherine Rayner
From Harris Finds His Feet by Catherine Rayner
From Harris Finds His Feet by Catherine Rayner
From Augustus and His Smile by Catherine Rayner

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From Augustus and His Smile by Catherine Rayner

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From Harris Finds His Feet by Catherine Rayner

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From Harris Finds His Feet by Catherine Rayner

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Joel Stewart


Joel Stewart

Joel Stewart was brought up in a commune in the wilds of Yorkshire. From an early age he was knocked sideways by stories, and invariably lay on the floor drawing pictures to recover. Later, in the year 2000, he graduated with a first class degree in Illustration from Falmouth College of Art.

Ever since graduating (and slightly before) he has been writing and drawing for a living, and has recently moved into animation design and directing for television (while not forgetting books!) He also plays a variety of musical instruments and lives with them and some fish in London.

Joel Stewart's illustrations

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From Addis Berner Bear Forgets by Joel Stewart
From Dexter Bexley and the Big Blue Beastie by Joel Stewart
From The Little Mermaid by Joel Stewart
From The Trouble with Wenlocks: A Stanley Wells Mystery by Joel Stewart
From Addis Berner Bear Forgets by Joel Stewart

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From Dexter Bexley and the Big Blue Beastie by Joel Stewart

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From The Little Mermaid by Joel Stewart

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From The Trouble with Wenlocks: A Stanley Wells Mystery by Joel Stewart

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Find out about BookTrust prizes

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In Other Words 2018

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