Pathways is a game-changing initiative designed to overcome barriers to entry and progression in children’s illustration publishing for artists from minority and under-represented backgrounds.
It’s an affordable, non-academic programme, open to aspiring illustrators with or without formal training in illustration, at any age from 18 up. It equips illustrators with the knowledge, skills, confidence and connections necessary to forge sustainable careers in children’s publishing. And it’s delivered by an impressive array of publishing editors and art directors, university lecturers and published children’s illustrators, through an unparalleled network of affiliated UK publishers and universities.
The two year programme, currently in its pilot phase, includes over 70 days of: one-to-one mentoring; residentials; one-day masterclasses; two-day and five-day short courses; training and professional development activities; networking opportunities with publishers, agencies, festivals and booksellers; and industry showcasing.
It is framed by up to six ‘literature creation briefs’, set and critiqued by publishers, which grow more demanding as the course progresses. By the end of the programme, Pathways’ illustrators are showcased at a number of international children’s book fairs as well as to the wider UK children’s publishing industry.
The pilot phase of Pathways is delivered with House of Illustration, and is running December 2019-September 2021. We expect to open applications for future Pathways programmes in summer 2022.