Sunday, February 21, 2021

Illustrated Notes From The SCBWI Winter Conference + Why Every #NY21SCBWI Attendee Should Visit the Virtual Portfolio Showcase (Including Writers!)

One of the silver linings of a virtual conference: more time to browse attendee art between sessions! Agents, art directors and editors are already doing this, but I also encourage the rest of you to check out the amazing art in the SCBWI Virtual Portfolio Showcase.

Another advantage of the virtual conference: you can browse at your leisure through March 19th. During an in-person conference, we generally only have a couple of hours, and it can get super-crowded:

Browse the Virtual Portfolio Showcase any way you'd like, but my advice is to do it gradually over the next few weeks. And don't feel like you have to start from the top of the gallery! Why not start with the illustrators whose last name begin with Z, and then work your way backwards? Or scroll through and sample randomly.

This is also a great chance for you to show your support for your fellow kidlit creators. If you find an illustrator whose work you admire, for example, give them a shoutout on social media along with a link to their website; all portfolios have a link. Also include the #NY21SCBWI hashtag to help encourage fellow attendees. Caution: Never share an illustrator's art online unless you have their permission, especially if the image you're sharing does not have their info included. 

A social media tip for illustrators who are sharing their art in social media: always make sure your name and (ideally) copyright info is embedded in art you share online. Some people may scoop and share your image without attribution, sometimes innocently, and then your art may be re-shared multiple times. You don't need a fancy watermark app to do this; you can just write your name and website URL somewhere, or include a scrap of paper with this info in your photo.

Speaking of fabulous art being created by illustrators during the SCBWI Winter Conference, I've been loving the illustrated notes and portraits that some of you have been posting! Here are just a few from Twitter. (Note: These are embedded tweets, so if you can't see the image, click through to see the original tweet)

These are just a few of the many wonderful illustrated notes being posted during the SCBWI Winter Conference. 

If you post illustrated notes during the conference or afterward as you're watching session video replays, be sure to use the #NY21SCBWI hashtag so others can see. Another way to share: after the conference, include your image in a blog post summarizing your own takeaways from the conference, then post in social media with a link (and again, don't forget to use the hashtag).

Enjoy the rest of the conference, and happy note-taking!


  1. Love this pictorial recap of the conference. Yay to Stan Yan!

  2. Love this pictorial recap of the conference. Yay to Stan Yan for his drawings!

  3. Thanks for blogging and all your conference tips Debbie