Thursday, December 15, 2011

Delightful Merry-go-round gift cards!

Books Illustrated has just received new stock of Merry-go-round gift cards. If you have not come across these before, not only are they beautifully illustrated, and you can re-use them (see how below).

With illustration styles to suit everyone they're a perfect gift! To view the entire range link through to our Merry-go-round page on this blog.

'Fire King' by Wayward Harper (Pack of 6)
'The Kiss' by Ann James (Pack of 6)
'Waratah' by Marta Salamon
(Assorted Pack of 4)
'The Miggy Tree' by Anna Walker
(Pack of 6)

Monday, December 12, 2011

Join our facebook community!

Hi everyone, we have just set up a facebook page and would love you to join our book-friendly community!

Fishing friends by Ann James

New Prints for Christmas!

We're pleased to introduce the new artwork of Sarah Kate Mitchell, Greg Holfeld and Ben Wood to Books Illustrated's followers - enjoy a taster here and visit our website to see many more!

Ticklefish Kisses by Sarah Kate Mitchell from
Starry Starry Night" (Murdoch Books)
The Explorers by Greg Holfeld

Heading Home by Ben Wood from 
"Give Me a Home Among the Gumtrees" (Scholastic Australia).

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Don't miss the magical children's story exhibition: Man, Dog, Boat

We've been blown away by the highly imaginative responses to this children's story project based on the iconic Man, Dog, Boat sculpture at the entrance to Gasworks Arts Park here in Melbourne.

The outstanding 111 submissions ranged across many art forms including: shape poems, acrostic poems  illustrations, pastel drawings, sculpture, comics, film, and even stop-motion animation.

There was a real sense of community as local families poured into the exhibition at 11am on the dot at the opening last Saturday. The gallery was full of excited children and proud parents. 5 awards were presented by Port Phillip's Major, Rachel Powning, to celebrate particularly creative responses - although the judges found it almost impossible to choose as all the entries were superb.

The submissions are all currently on show in the Man, Dog, Boat Story exhibition at Gasworks Arts Park until Wednesday 30th of November.

We will be at the exhibition from 11am until 4pm this Saturday 26th and Justine, the coordinator of this project, will be there on Sunday 27th, so pop in and say hi and don't forget to vote for your favourite entry!

To find out more about the project visit:

Exhibition dates: Saturday 19th until Wednesday 30th of November

Venue: Gatehouse building, Gasworks Arts Park

Opening times:
Monday - Friday: 9.30 am until 5.00pm
Weekends: 11am until 4pm

Artist Book Exhibition at Books Illustrated

Carless Water, limited edition book, by Ilse Van Garderen $55

Come and visit us at Books Illustrated for a exquisite exhibition of artist books by Ilse Van Garderen.

Below are photographs from the opening on Sunday 20th of November, where Isle spoke eloquently about her work and discussed print-making techniques with illustrator Anne Spudvilas.

Th exhibition will be on until December 18th. Limited edition books and prints of Carless Water are available from Books Illustrated's website. 

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Success for Australian Children's Books in Frankfurt

Source: Publishing
Melbourne-based children's publisher, Andrew Wilkins from Wilkins Farago, reported daily for Publishing Perspectives at this year's Frankfurt Book Fair. 

We think you'll find his article below very interesting and positive. Link through to read the full article. 

Source: Publishing Perspectives 
Oct 13, 2011 by Andrew Wilkins

"Australian children's books consistently outsell adult fiction in the global rights market, according to trade magazine Bookseller+Publisher's annual survey of Australian rights managers, 'The Right Stuff'. 

Within the category of Australian children's books, picture book rights are the most often sold, followed by junior fiction and young adult..."  

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Get Creative - write or illustrate the story of "Man, Dog, Boat"...

Since 1995 the 'Man, Dog, Boat' sculpture at the entrance to Gasworks Arts Park has been an iconic feature for all its visitors, as well as becoming the Park's official logo.

If you have not had the pleasure of visiting before, Gasworks is a not-for-profit community arts centre based in Albert Park, which used to be a working gas works. The beautiful old buildings have since been renovated; converted into theatres and studios for a range of workshops and performances.

Gasworks Arts Park are inviting children, up to the age of 17, to write and/or illustrated the story behind these mysterious characters.

Entries will be exhibited in the 'Man, Dog, Boat Exhibition and Award Ceremony' opening on Saturday 19 November.

You can enter individually or as a group - so get your friends, families and classes involved. Kids are encouraged to be as inventive and creative as possible!

  • Write the story of the characters and how they ended up on the boat (Who are they? Where are they from?)
  • Use the sculpture as inspiration for your own illustrations of their adventures
  • Create a story board or graphic novel 
  • Use visual media such as Imovie to make an animation filming your drawings
  • Create a 3D sculpture inspired by the characters 

For more ideas visit the Man, Dog, Boat Wikispace... and add to our 
on-going story!

Thursday, October 6, 2011

From Rolf Heimann in China

Hi Ann and Jess,

I'm still in China, (from September26th to October 8th), on behalf of the
Australian Cartoonists Association. I must have done 500 kangaroos,
naturally the animal they always wanted me to draw when signing books or
giving autographs.

The occasion was the 3rd Animation Fair in Dongguan
(ACTIF), mainly a fair for merchandizing and promoting animation, but
incorporating children's books. Part of our activity was at the City Library
in Dongguan, where I donated some of my books. The events were attended by
crowds of enthusiastic kids.

From, Rolf

(click on map link below to see where the Fair is happening. Read more about Rolf's illustration.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Children's Book people are a creative bunch!

This is one of the reasons we love working in the Childrens' Book world ...

Erica Wagner, currently one of the Children's Publishers at Allen & Unwin, opens her first solo painting exhibition Dark Horse on Saturday Sept 24 at Cambridge Studio Gallery
 in Collingwood ...

From Sept 28 to Oct 2 sees the first ever production of an exciting new theatre company 'Jump Leads' whose founding members include Ros Price, former Children's Publisher at Allen & Unwin and Liz Honey well known children's book author and Illustrator.

Still awake still is on art the Victorian Arts Centre

Friday, September 16, 2011

Shaun Tan's "The Lost Thing – book to film" exhibition at the Australian Academy of Design

This exhibition, curated by Books Illustrated, showcases original artwork by Shaun Tan from his book The Lost Thing as well as representing a ten-year period of creative development for the animated film,The Lost Thing, based on his acclaimed picture book of the same name. Included are conceptual drawings and paintings by Shaun, who was both artist and director for the film.
Dates: 14 – 30 September
Venue: The Academy of design
220 Ingles Street Port Melbourne
Hours: Monday to Friday, 9am – 5pm
Group bookings welcome – contact
Ann Haddon at
Don't miss a special talk by Shaun as part of this exhibition -
Date: Wednesday 21 September
Time: 4.00pm-5.30pm
Books and DVDs will be available for sale.

Also at Port Fairy
A replica /print version of this exhibition will also be showing in Port Fairy, Victoria.
Venue: Blarney Books and Art, 37 James Street, Port Fairy, Vic. PH: 03 5568 2174.
Date: 3rd September to 31st October.
Hours: Thursday to Sunday 11am to 4pm. Open every day during the school holidays.
Customs House Gallery can be contacted on
PH: 0448 348974 or

Wednesday, September 7, 2011


We've been busy preparing for several exhibitions. One we are really excited to be involved in is ART FOR COUNTRY, which is an art sale and auction in aid of The Indigenous Literacy Foundation. 

As we've been involved in some programs with indigenous communities over the last few years, we know that the work of ILF is valuable that supporting this event is a way of being able to do something about an issue we feel passionate about.

The art is wonderful -There are giclee prints of beautiful pictures made by children in remote communities during workshops with Alison Lester and Liz Honey, Ros Price, Jess and Ann. There are other works by professional indigenous artists too, donated from all over.
Illustrator and painter, Pat Torres from Broome has donated three of her very strong works including an illustration from the classic picture book written by Daisy Utemorrah, Do Not Go Round the Edges.

         There is an event on the evening of Friday Sept 9 in melbourne at the Wheeler Centre
          It should be a great night - with good food, wine and company 
         If you can make it you need to book ASAP - $25 entry
If you can't make it to the event, the catalogue of works is on the ILF website - and plenty are for sale there -  not part of the auction - including the kid's paintings! 
                                          Timber Creek (NT) student working on scratch back picture 2010

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Illustrators' up-coming Exhibitions

Don't miss out on these two exhibitions: 

A Show of Hands by Jacqui Grantford 
    12 Little Chapel St
    Prahran Vic 3181
    July 19 to August 7
    Gallery Hours: 10am to 5pm   

A series of works depicting hands from all walks of life - 
hands from everyday people and well known people. And with each hand portrait there is a story - sometimes inspirational, sometimes sad and sometimes heart warming.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Caroline Magerl's "Red Man" exhibition

Illustrator, fine artist and printmaker Caroline Magerl explores the art of painting itself, fleeting impressions caught and explored on canvas. 

Explore her intriguing concepts of thought in this eagerly awaited powerful exhibition. 

Read more about the exhibition at The Gallery Eumundi website

Exhibition details:
Date: 8th June - 3rd July
Gallery Hours: 
Monday closed, Tuesday by appointment
Wed-Sat: 9am - 4pm
Sunday: 10am - 2pm

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

An Interview Without Words with illustrator Shaun Tan

Shaun Tan was recently interviewed by Spiegel Online and answered all their questions with drawings. 

See Shaun's "drawn conclusions" below, expressed with just pen and paper:

"SPIEGEL: Mr. Tan, you recently won the Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award, a sort of Nobel Prize for picture book authors. Your success as an an illustrator and author is being celebrated around the world. But you are not yet a household name. Could you please introduce yourself?

Shaun Tan

Part 2: On Hollywood
SPIEGEL: You worked together with director Andrew Ruhemann to transform your book "The Lost Thing" into a short animated film. The story tells of a strange and seemingly useless being that is constantly overlooked by everybody. As co-directors, you and Ruhemann won the 2011 Oscar for best animated short -- congratulations! As a laid-back Australian, what was your impression of Hollywood?

Shaun Tan

Part 3: On Readers
SPIEGEL: Your children's books are beloved by kids and adults alike. How do you picture your readers?

Shaun Tan
Part 4: On Good and Bad Drawings
SPIEGEL: What differentiates a good illustration from a bad one?

Shaun Tan
Part 5: On the Workplace
SPIEGEL: What does your workplace look like?

Shaun Tan

Part 6: On Honors
SPIEGEL: At age 37, you have received the highest honor in your field. What's next?

Shaun Tan

Part 7: On Skills
SPIEGEL: What skill do you wish you possessed?

Shaun Tan

Part 8: On Success
SPIEGEL: How does success feel?

Shaun Tan

Part 9: On Loneliness
SPIEGEL: Your protagonists are, for the most part, lost souls in strange worlds. Is it necessary for an artist to be lonely?

Shaun Tan

Part 10: On Words
SPIEGEL: Your work generally doesn't use a lot of words. In fact, your story "The Arrival" doesn't have a single word in it. Do you manage to use words so sparingly in the real world as well?

Shaun Tan

Part 11: On Inspiration
SPIEGEL: Where do you get inspiration for your stories?"

Shaun Tan

For the full interview visit Spiegel Online.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

The Lost Thing Touring Exhibition

This Books Illustrated exhibition is a fascinating insight into the creation of The Lost Thing, Shaun Tan's multi-award-winning film - most famously, the Academy Award (Oscar) for best Short Animation, 2011.

It features drawings, paintings and other developmental work created by Shaun in the adaptation of his original picture book, The Lost Thing, to the multi-award-winning animation. A modern day parable inviting multiple interpretations by people of all ages!

The exhibition is currently on show at Brisbane Power House.

Venue: Brisbane Power House
Date: Tuesday 28th June to Sunday 10th July
Time: 9.00am - 5.00pm

Prints from The Lost Thing exhibition and other of Shaun's books are available on the Books Illustrated website.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Original Artworks by Karen Lloyd-Jones

We are excited to announce original artworks for sale from Karen Lloyd-Jones' intricately detailed books Spiders Spin Webs, Zoo Album and Butterflies Fly. These exquisitely painted illustrations would be perfect for any animal and insect enthusiast!

Karen Lloyd-Jones lived as a child in Nairobi, Kenya, which informed her love of nature and animals. Spiders Spin Webs, her first picture book, was an award-winning book in Australia and was extremely well received in the US.

Karen`s book illustrations are created in watercolour, gouache and coloured pencil. She continues to work as an artist and is currently in her final year of a Diploma in Visual Arts, concentrating on oil painting and print-making.

To view more of Karen's work on our web site just click on the image below.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

News from Clunes Back to Booktown

We had an excellent time at this year's Clunes Back to Booktown weekend festival (May 14 and 15) and thought we'd share a few fun photographs from the day!
Back to Booktown is a held at Clunes each year around this time. It spans one weekend and every nook and cranny in this fascinating historic goldmining town is filled with books - mostly old, many rare, all waiting for a new home and collectors, browsers and book lovers of all ages have a delicious time on the hunt. Some travelled up by stream-train from Melbourne this year!   It was great weather (better than in Melbourne) and a lovely bustling atmosphere with a fabulous crowd.  There are visiting author talks (including Blanche & Bob this year!), Punch & Judy (no, not Blanche & Bob), an interesting range of good food, the school big band, and booky activities for kids too.  It'll be on again around the same time next year - and we'll be there - come and say hi!

Visitors enjoying the exhibition of prints & picture books

Two very enthusiastic customers, with our display in the background

A ballerina illustration that Ann J painted for a lovely young customer.

Nick and Dot enjoying Autumn in Clunes during a break from bookselling