Wombat Books Blog

Wombat Books blog is the place to keep up to date with all the goings-on in the world of Aussie kid's books.

Illustration Challenge Finalists Announced

Phew! It was some tough competition this year when judging our Illustration Challenge. There were so many amazing entries, using so many different techniques - from water-based paints to digital design to collage. Every drawing was so unique that it was hard to choose the finalists. Here's just a brief snippet for you ...

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However, after many hours of going through piles of entries, we've narrowed it down to 31 artists. Congratulations to the following artists who will be featured in our printed edition of Around Australia in 30 Places.

Tommy Clements
Britney Fallon
Layla Gill
Ruby Levitt
Scarlett Papps-Burford
Nathan Kingsley
Lara Tamke
Alexey Luchkovskiy
Kai Caspelherr
Daisy Karner
Anna Rose Gray
Andrew Philip
Teniel Sauer
Rory Smith
Abbey Olafsen
Ruby Wandschneider
Belle Ritchie
Ella Zieserl
Evie Larcombe
Zach Searle
Jack Morris
Blake Ellerman
Sonya Clarke
Aramis Surtees
Caitlin Miller
Berylia Nur'aina
Rebecca Tang
Lara Winton
Amber Liang
Sarah Savige
Samantha Parish

Can't wait to see the final book? You can preorder your copy of Around Australia in 30 Places now here with free shipping.

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Dreaming with Emma Middleton

 Wombat Books catches up with Emma Middleton about her latest picture book, The Dream Bird.

emma middleton 1. Congratulations on such a visually stunning book. Did it turn out how you imagined?

Yes, the illustrations did turn out how I imagined. The story has a classic feel to me, so I wanted to emulate this style in the illustrations. One of the things that excited me about illustrating the story was the transitions between fantasy and reality. I wanted to create layered illustrations where you could almost see reality merging into the fantastical world.

 2. What’s your favourite thing about children’s books?

Gosh, there are so many, I adore children’s books! I think story is one of the most powerful tools that is essential to us in a compassionate society. Children learn, empathise and are entertained by story and it offers a real opportunity to plant seeds of inspiration. The combination of words and illustrations is magical. I particularly love it when the visual narrative is left to tell elements of the story, so the young child can be an active participant in the decoding of the narrative.

3. What’s the best thing about being an illustrator?

The best thing about being an illustrator is having the opportunity to give a child beautiful pictures to absorb and enjoy.Dream Bird finalhigh text5 32

4. What book are you currently reading?

To be honest I always have a few picture book under my bed, but I have just recently started The Shepherd’s Hut.

5. Did you have trouble sleeping when you were a kid? Were there any crazy techniques you tried to get to sleep? i.e. was milk and cookies a fav?

I do remember having milk with honey, but I was actually one of those strange children who often asked to go to bed. Now I realise how lucky my parents were regarding bedtime.

6. On what adventure would you like the Dream Bird to take you?

I would love to go on a tropical underwater adventure. Hopefully the Dream Bird can hold her breath!

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