Society of
Children's Book Writers
and Illustrators

The Nuts and Bolts of Illustration Half-Day Intensive

Date(s) - 10/02/2021
8:00 am - 2:45 pm


Oct 2. (8am – 2:45pm Central Time)

4-Part Virtual webinar featuring:


8:00am – 9:15am Central


Carolyn Dee Flores (Picture Book Dummies) Storyboard, Organization, Book Dummy, Size, Scale, Structure, InDesign, Reproduction.

Carolyn is the author/illustrator of over 14 books for children, including the picture book The Amazing Watercolor Fish, and she wrote the short story “How to Exist in a City of Ghosts” which is featured in the book Living Beyond Borders: Growing Up Mexican in America which has received starred reviews from Booklist and the School Library Journal (Philomel).



9:30am – 10:45 am


Sheli Petersen (Portfolio and WebSheli is doing an encore presentation of her fantastic Portfolio and Illustration Website Presentation w live Q&A.

Sheli Petersen will also be the judge of our SCBWI Southwest Texas 2021 Portfolio Contest where three winners will receive a free portfolio review with Caldecott Winning Illustrator E.B. Lewis.

Sheli Petersen is the illustrator of five published books.

She teaches illustration and graphic design at Texas Women’s University.

Award-winning illustrator Sheli Petersen will cover the basics of putting together a professional portfolio and website in this encore presentation. Select and organize your best work for the children’s publishing market. The webinar will focus on best practices for illustrators, but also touch on advice for author-illustrators.



11:00am  – 12:15pm


Laura Susan-Thomas (Photoshop, Procreate)

Bringing your doodles to the digital realm!


As Artists we all have those energetic loose doodles, drawings, character studies and ideas spilling onto our sketchbook pages. I love bringing the energy of the sketch into the digital realm and even mashing up traditional work that is even partially finished into a final piece. 


For this demo I will share my process on how I take both loose sketch ideas and also some more completed traditional drawing ideas into photoshop to create a finished piece. I will share some tricks and tips I found along my journey into digital as a medium, how to keep the energy of sketch, your own mark making and gestural feel in your digital work, and talk about the pros and cons of digital versus traditional depending on your project and how it serves to push your narrative.


Back when I was working at Imagineering, I saw this incredible new medium and went back to school to earn a certificate in Digital art and have been using this medium alongside my traditional art ever since. I love sharing my excitement for digital and what I have learned along the journey. Hope you will join me!


 Laura-Susan Thomas Bio


I live on the Central Coast in California with my husband and a sweet studio dog Roo. Working as a Freelance Illustrator / Storyteller, I also work as a Fine Arts Instructor at Allan Hancock College, where I teach digital fine arts classes. My love is to tell a story, and get the quirky lovable characters that reside in my head on the page and out into the world.

As a Children’s illustrator I have created work for Baby Bug Magazine, Los Angeles Times and several interactive ebooks. Prior to my freelancing, I was a Disney Imagineer for many years. Creating themed art works and graphics for Euro Disneyland, Tokyo Disney Seas and Animal Kingdom.




12:15 – 1:30




1:30pm – 2:45pm


Rachelle Meyer (Sketching and Drawing)

My Top Tips for Sketchbook Studies A sketchbook practice is essential for honing your style as an illustrator and artist. But what should you draw, and how do you make it a part of your daily life? Rachelle Meyer guides you with some drawing tips and ideas for finding your voice through your sketchbook. Related links: (Faces on the Ferry Sketchbook film & Top 3 Tips for Sketchbook Studies)

Rachelle is an American illustrator living in Amsterdam. She’s worked for over 15 years as a freelancer specializing in narrative art, particularly in children’s and literary markets. Her latest works display a vivid style inspired by silkscreen printing. She works both digitally and free-hand. Her talents have been used to interpret the work of contemporary best-selling authors such as Dave Eggers (A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius), Audrey Niffenegger (The Time Traveler’s Wife), and Nick Ortner (The Tapping Solution). Her illustrative art project, Faces on the Ferry, grabbed the attention of The Guardian, Het Parool, and FLOW Magazine, among others. “Texas Tracts: A collection of autobio mini-comics” is her second crowdfunding campaign.



$40 SCBWI Members. $55 Non-SCBWI Members For 4-Part Virtual Intensive


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Ticket Information

Non-SCBWI Member Ticket - $55.00

SCBWI Member Ticket - $40.00

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The SCBWI Anti-Harassment Policy
To register for an SCBWI event, you are required to acknowledge our Anti-Harassment Policy.
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The Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI) is dedicated to providing a safe and harassment-free environment for all of its members and will take any and all necessary steps to address and prevent harassment at events associated with SCBWI. Harassment under this policy may include verbal comments, written comments, displayed images, or behaviors such as intimidation, stalking, body policing, unwelcome photography or recording, sustained disruption of talks or other events, inappropriate physical contact, unwelcome sexual attention or advances, and bullying or coercion. 

The SCBWI Member Anti-Harassment Policy applies to all situations of harassment or intimidation at any SCBWI Event. An “SCBWI Event” is any event, meeting or activity that is authorized by an SCBWI Regional Manager to be sponsored by, or affiliated with, SCBWI. SCBWI events may include, if properly authorized by an SCBWI Regional Manager, the Annual Summer Conference in Los Angeles, the Annual Winter Conference in New York, regional conferences, meetings and meet-ups. This SCBWI Member Anti-Harassment Policy also applies to “SCBWI On-Line Interactions,” which include Zooms, Webinars, online meetings, communications and content posted on, or directed towards, SCBWI’s Social Media accounts or sent through any of the communication tools available on SCBWI’s website, SCBWI’s Social Media accounts under this policy include the official SCBWI accounts on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, Tumblr and LinkedIn.


Code of Conduct

All participants in SCBWI Events and SCBWI On-Line Interactions, including faculty, volunteers, staff, and attendees, are required to comply with the following anti-harassment code of conduct. The SCBWI Anti-Harassment Policy prohibits harassment, including but not limited to the following behaviors:

  • Intimidation, stalking, or following;
  • Sustained disruption of talks or other events;
  • Unwelcome sexual attention or advances;
  • Abusive verbal comments;
  • Quid pro quo– sexual harassment that occurs when one in an authority position requests sex or a sexual relationship in exchange for professional consideration or favors;.
  • Harmful or prejudicial verbal comments, written comments, or visual images related to gender, sexual orientation, ethnicity, race, religion, socio-economic status, disability, age, appearance, body size, or other personal characteristics;
  • Inappropriate use of nudity and/or sexual images
  • Unwelcome or uninvited attention or contact
  • Physical assault (including unwelcome touching or groping);
  • Real or implied threat of physical harm;
  • Real or implied threat of professional or financial damage or harm;
  • Body policing, unwelcome photography or recording;
  • Doxing
  • Harassment does not include respectful disagreement or reasonable and respectful critique made in good faith. SCBWI continues to welcome and appreciate presentation of appropriate controversial ideas, free speech, and creative artistic expression. SCBWI encourages members to hold one another accountable to the Code of Conduct as stated in this part of the Policy and to take the perspectives of others seriously when a disagreement arises.

We expect all participants at SCBWI activities, meetings, and networking events to abide by this Anti-Harassment Policy in all venues, including sanctioned events, ancillary events, unofficial events, and social gatherings.


Reporting Procedures

Any person who believes there has been a violation of the SCBWI Anti-Harassment Policy can report the offense in one or all of the following ways:

  • Certain SCBWI Events, including the Annual Summer Conference in Los Angeles and the Annual Winter Conference in New York, will designate one or more Safety Team Members who will be available during the conference to provide a safe space for members to report an incident. The Safety Team Member will report directly to the conference director or regional advisor in charge.
  • A complainant may submit a complaint under this policy to the Director of Community Marketing and Engagement, the Director of Illustration and Artist Programs and/or your Regional Manager.
  • SCBWI has a dedicated email address for reporting any potential incident of harassment under this policy. Anyone who chooses to report an incident can find the Anti-Harassment Report Form on the SCBWI website (About > Anti-Harassment) or use the following link: Reports should include the substance of the complaint, date, and whenever possible, a list of witnesses or a reference to the relevant URLs, if the offense occurred through an SCWBI On-Line Interaction.

SCBWI will investigate all complaints subject to the SCBWI Anti-Harassment Policy. If the policy applies, SCBWI will investigate the matter and take whatever action is necessary and appropriate to prevent a recurrence and protect the environment at SCWBI Events. If a complaint is made anonymously, please note that SCBWI will not be able to follow up on an anonymous report with the complainant directly, as SCBWI will not have contact information for the anonymous complainant. Moreover, anonymous complaints may hinder SCBWI’s ability to investigate the complaint.  SCBWI will take steps to protect the confidentiality of the complaint, to the extent possible.  However, complete confidentiality may not be possible in all circumstances.  SCBWI will make every attempt to respond to a named complainant in a timely fashion.

If appropriate, SCBWI may report the incident to local authorities.



The SCBWI Anti-Harassment Policy prohibits retaliation against a member of the SCBWI community for reporting harassment, intimidation or discrimination, or for participating in an investigation relating to any complaint made under this policy. The sanctions for retaliation are the same sanctions available to address any other violation of the SCBWI Anti-Harassment Policy.



SCBWI takes all allegations of harassment seriously. Complaints will be investigated by SCWBI if they fall within the scope of SCWBI’s Anti-Harassment Policy. Depending on the results of the investigation, SCWBI will determine whether a sanction is appropriate.

Sanctions for faculty, speakers, volunteers, staff or board members may include any of the following:

  • warning the party involved that the particular behavior is inappropriate and must be ceased;
  • immediate removal from a particular event;
  • denial of access to SCBWI spaces and venues on a temporary or permanent basis;
  • withholding of a contracted honorarium;
  • prohibition from future speaking engagements;
  • prohibition from future faculty appointments;
  • expulsion from SCBWI; and/or
  • removal from the Board of Advisors or Board of Directors, when appropriate.

Sanctions for attendees, members, and guests can include any of the following:

  • warning the party involved that specified behavior is inappropriate and must be ceased;
  • immediate removal from a particular event, without refund;
  • denial of access to SCBWI spaces and venues on a permanent or temporary basis;
  • termination of SCBWI membership, without refund; and/or
  • prohibition of future SCBWI membership.

If the conduct at issue involves one of SCBWI’s employees, SCBWI will utilize whatever corrective action is appropriate based on the result of the investigation and subject to SCBWI employment policies and practices.



SCBWI will make every reasonable effort to conduct all investigations into allegations of harassment, intimidation, or discrimination in a manner that will protect the confidentiality of all parties and witnesses. Notwithstanding the above, confidentiality is not absolute, and those with a legitimate business reason to know and be informed of the allegations will be so informed. Parties to the complaint should treat the matter under investigation with discretion and respect the reputation of all parties involved.


If you wish to file a complaint or an anonymous complaint, CLICK HERE to access the Anti-harassment Report Form.

If you have questions regarding this policy, you may send an email to Please include the words "Anti-Harassment Policy" in the subject line. 


I have read and accepted the SCBWI Anti-Harassment policy.