Meet Our Pathways Into Alumni: Nami Ralph - Pop Up

Nami is a talented illustrator with a passion for storytelling through her artwork. With a background in art and design, Nami went on to study at the Putney School of Art and the Royal Drawing School to further develop her skills in illustration.

However, her dedication to her craft really shone through as a mentee on our Pathways Into Children’s Publishing programme. Nami’s artwork style is playful, colourful, and warm, and her love of storytelling is evident in the characters she creates and the details she surrounds them with. She uses a range of mediums to bring her illustrations to life. Her inspiration is drawn from everyday life, as well as the works of greats such as Edward Hopper, Norman Rockwell, and Judith Kerr who she cites as inspiration.

As a result of her hard work and dedication, Nami has established herself as a talented and sought-after illustrator. She’s currently working on illustration projects for the National Trust, commissions, and working on short stories she hopes to see published soon. 

We had the pleasure of  being able to ask Nami some questions about herself:

Tell us about your work?

I am currently working on a couple of illustration projects for the National Trust. One is a children’s trail sheet and the other is an animation, which I’m really excited about. Outside of commissioned work, I’m working on developing a couple of stories, and hope to take these to publishers soon. I’m also developing zines this year, which I see as an experimental ground where I can explore themes that are personal to me.


What drives you?

I love discussing ideas on how something that can be approached differently and enjoy finding inspiration in the research that I do for projects. For example, I was researching for a story that had a space theme so I looked at archive footage of the Apollo Mission Control Centre, and I noticed the rounded edges of the monitors they were working on. I thought it might be a good idea to propose a book format that also had these rounded edges so it resembled the 60’s computer screens. It’s these subtle and small creative decisions that bring more meaning to the work I do.

What drew you to children’s literature?

My ambition has always been to create illustrations that a child would want to return to, even as adult – just as I have done in the books that have left a lasting impression on me and ultimately made me want to illustrate and tell my own stories.

How has Pathways helped you nurture your style?

Through Pathways, I discovered how much I love creating humorous and quirky characters, and how I could confidently use a colour palette. It helped me recognise what my illustration style is, to build a healthy relationship with it and gave me the confidence to take it out to the world.


If you’re passionate about illustration and storytelling and looking to enhance your skills, the Pathways Into Publishing programme is the perfect place to start. This prestigious course provides formal instruction, mentorship, and the opportunity to build a portfolio that will set you on the path to success in the world of illustration.