All posts filed under: Interviews

Studio Visit with Jessie Hartland: Meteorites, Museums, and Stolen Masterpieces

Interviews / Process / Studio Visit

Above: Painting from How the Dinosaur got to the Museum by Jessie Hartland. I’ve known and loved Jessie Hartland’s work ever since I worked with her on assignments for Martha Stewart Kids magazine. She was one of our go-to illustrators because she always nailed it. Jessie is the author and illustrator of several fantastic non-fiction picture books. She has also illustrated travelogues for Travel & Leisure Family magazine, designed window displays for Barneys and Bloomingdales, and created […]

Studio Visit: Brian Floca, Sergio Ruzzier, Sophie Blackall, Edward Hemingway, and John Bemelmans Marciano

Interviews / Studio Visit

Above: The illustrators on the roof of their studio space. From left: Brian Floca, Sergio Ruzzier, Sophie Blackall, Edward Hemingway, and John Bemelmans Marciano. Liz and I recently got to spend a few hours at the shared studio space of children’s book author/illustrators Sophie Blackall, Brian Floca, Edward Hemingway (“Eddie”),  John Bemelmans Marciano (“Johnny”), and Sergio Ruzzier, These guys have been sharing a studio for over two years—with the exception of Eddie who moved in a few months […]

Pen & Oink interviews Jon Chad, part II: format format format


Last week, I interviewed Jon Chad about his amazing geology adventure comic, Leo Geo and His…man, that’s a long title. Just go look at it, okay? Anyway, Jon had a lot of interesting things to say about books with interesting formats, which I thought would make a great post all on its own. So here it is. Make sure to scroll to the end for the best alter-ego self-portrait EVER. What could the children’s book […]

A Pen & Oink interview: we dig Jon Chad


Jon Chad is all my favorite kinds of nerd. Seriously. He loves comics. He loves science. He loves the art of bookmaking (not to be confused with the mathematics of bookmaking). People, I have to come clean: I have a secret past life as an aspiring geophysicist. So you can imagine my delight when I discovered that OMG SOMEONE MADE A GEOLOGY COMIC, in the coolest format imaginable: you turn the book sideways to follow […]

A Pen & Oink interview with Liz Tardiff, in which she covers book covers


Today’s interview is something a little different: our first with a children’s book designer! Read on for an interesting look at the work of Liz Tardiff, who’s with Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. People, if you’re writing a book about the circus for HMH, don’t expect the cover to be typeset in Rosewood. THE DIRT ON: Liz Tardiff Hometown: Blackstone, MA (Usually that is qualified with: “Well, I grew up in MA but my family is from […]

Interview roundup


Dearest readers, Pen & Oink is keeping things relaxed this weekend. But check out these interviews from our first three months! And enjoy your solstice holiday, whichever it may be. -Ruthie, Robin, and Liz “The first thing she asked on the phone was: ‘Tell me honestly, have you ever taken a drawing class?'” —-Abby Hanlon   “I am more comfortable working at a small size—I’m able to create a more energetic line when I draw […]

Behind the Scenes: Where’s Walrus?

Featured Books / Interviews / Process

Last week we interviewed children’s book illustrator, Stephen Savage. Stephen sent me so many great images I couldn’t fit it all into one post! Today, Stephen talks to us about his award-winning, wordless picture book Where’s Walrus? and takes us through his process, from the very first sketch to the final color comps for the cover. Stephen’s style is fresh, spare, and seems effortless, so it’s fascinating to see the amount of work and planning that goes into his finished pieces. […]

A Pen & Oink interview with Rebecca Emberley, in which she discusses birds and spiders

Indie Picture Books That Are Awesome / Interviews

I love to champion great independent picture books. If only there were more of them! I was, therefore, delighted to see Rebecca Emberley‘s Kickstarter campaign. She’s starting a small press called Two Little Birds; their first title will be The Itsy Bitsy Spider, a book/ebook/music extravaganza. THE DIRT ON: Rebecca Emberley Hometown: Ipswich, Massachusetts; have lived lots of other places. Now lives in: Kittery, Maine. Tools of the trade: Paper, scissors and Freehand MX. Artistic […]

A Pen & Oink Interview with Stephen Savage, in which he talks color scripts and courting Neal Porter

Interviews / Process

  Today we’ve got an awesome interview with my neighbor and friend, Stephen Savage. He has a great new book out called Little Tug, and Polar Bear Morning, his sequel to the award-winning Polar Bear Night with author Lauren Thompson, comes out in January. You may also know Where’s Walrus?, a beautiful, wordless picture book about a walrus who escapes from the zoo. Stephen’s work is bold and graphic and he’s generously given us some insight […]