Susan Swan interview with David Alan Binder
Post date: May 17, 2016 12:36:28 PM
Susan Swan interview with David Alan Binder
Her bio from Amazon: Graduated with BA, MFA from Florida State University.
Illustrator working primarily in digital cut paper collage. Awards include those from The Society of Illustrators, The 3-Dimensional Art Directors and Illustrators Show, The New York Book Show.
When she is not creating pictures she makes jewelry.
Children’s Illustrators: www.childrensillustrators.com/SusanSwan
ILLUSTRATOR of children's books:
***OUT ON THE PRAIRIE – Bank Street’s Best Children’s Books of the Year/outstanding merit book - starred reviews from Kirkus, SLJ, and PW.***
***VOLCANO RISING has been selected for inclusion in Children's Book of the Month Club acclaimed catalog and is a Junior Library Guild selection***
***selected to the 2014 list of NSTA/CBC Outstanding Science Trade Books***
***GUESS WHO'S IN THEDESERT in book stores now!***
***PICK A CIRCLE, GATHER SQUARES in book stores now!***
***CHEERS FOR A DOZEN EARS in your bookstore now***
***SUGAR WHITE SNOW AND EVERGREENS in stores now***
***SUN ABOVE AND BLOOMS BELOW in stores now***
1. Where are you currently living?
The very tiny town of Ovilla in Texas
2. What would you say is your most interesting illustrating quirk?
Don’t know if this is exactly a quirk but if I have an assignment that doesn’t engage me I give myself a problem to solve or details to concentrate on ~ ex. what unusual textures/patterns can I use in the background, what can I add (more animals, bugs, whatever) for the child to spot.
3. Tell us your insights on self-publish or use a publisher?
I’d rather work directly with a publisher and so far have turned down all requests. There are just so many things that can go wrong. I have heard however, that many people have worked successfully with self-publishers.
4. How did you or would you suggest acquire an agent? Any tips for new writers on getting one?
I’ve had a few agents over the years but prefer now to be without.
Before you query an agent check around to see what other’s experiences have been with them. I think they are especially good if you are new or just aren’t good at the business side of the business, or if you would just rather leave the time consuming job of promoting to someone else. Qualified agents will be indispensable in negotiating contracts and just plain knowing what’s going on in the illustration world.
5. Do you have any suggestions or helps for new illustrators (please be specific and informational as possible)?
Society of Children’s Book Illustrators and Writers
Graphic Artist’s Guild
6. What was one of the most surprising things you learned about your creative process with your illustrating?
Don’t try to be perfect. Your quirks are you, they are your style and what make you different from everyone else.
7. How many books have you illustrated?
50 + picture books and many other projects for editorial publishing, textbook illustration for grade K through college, advertising, card companies, and on and on.
8. Do you have any tricks or tips to help others become a better illustrator (please be as specific and information as you possibly can)?
Keep growing. Work at it every day.
9. What are some ways in which you promote your work?
Illustrators should have an online presence, website and or blog, and keep it fresh (something I still struggle with). I have found that sending post cards several times a year to art buyers at companies you want to work for very helpful. Also send to previous clients to remind them of your new work.
10. What is the one thing you would do differently now (concerning writing or editing or publishing or illustrating) and why?
So many, many things but my mind is a blank right now.
11. What saying or mantra do you live by?
Keep on keeping on. Persevere. Get in the studio and work. Every day. But you must sometimes get away from it too. Get out. Let your mind wander. Experiment. Try new things. Look at new things.
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