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picture book classes

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I've been researching picture book classes online but would love to hear directly from folks about what courses they preferred.

Some of the ones I've heard about are Susanna Hill Leonard; Storyteller Academy; Anastasia Suen; and Gotham Writers Workshop (but they seem to teach children's writing in general, not picture books).

I'm hoping for a class that takes maybe a month or less (not a semester-long course) that can help me starting from the basics.  I'm not particularly interested in finding an agent/publisher.

Thank you in advance for any feedback!
#1 - May 04, 2021, 05:44 PM

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Hi, There are a few children's book courses at, either focused on illustration or writing.  Last I saw they were still running them online.  I would recommend the Picture Book Writing course  (6 weeks) with Andrew Weale.  Really enjoyed it, lots of writing prompts and examples etc
#2 - May 05, 2021, 03:17 AM

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The Writing Barn offers online courses. Lisa Katzenberger, published author of two picture books, is teaching a class for six weeks/six sessions starting in June. I've not taken her class but she is a good friend and I'm assuming a great teacher. But there are other PB classes there as well. I've taken several one session webinars through the Writing Barn and they were fantastic, so I'm assuming a six session class would be fantastic as well.

Here is a link:

I have also heard good things about both Susanna Hill Leonard's classes and Storyteller Academy. But I do not have personal experience with them.
#3 - May 05, 2021, 05:29 AM
Freaky Funky Fish ( Running Press Kids, May 2021)
Tell Someone (Albert Whitman, October 2021)
Peculiar Primates (Running Press Kids, October 2022)

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I've taken Gotham's Children's Book Writing I and II (online) and they were both very good - I learned a ton and got helpful feedback from the instructor and fellow students. I am currently taking a Picture Book revision course through GrubStreet (online). I'm only two weeks in (out of 8 weeks), so too early to give my review on the course! They also offer an intro to Picture Book writing course. Good luck!
#4 - May 05, 2021, 06:01 AM

Hi K-Yee, For illustrating picturebooks, I find SVS a great resource. They also offer a free trial. Will, Jake and Lee are all professional PB illustrators and have a hilarious podcast too.
#5 - May 05, 2021, 12:10 PM

Excellent suggestions so far!

As a different option, I suggest Ann Whitford Paul's Writing Picture Books, which is like a picture book writing course in a book (the link takes you to my detailed review of it).

Also, I don't know what's at the Highlights Foundation right now, but you should check there too. They offer a number of picture book courses and workshops over the course of the year.
#6 - May 05, 2021, 01:55 PM
Harold Underdown

The Purple Crayon, a children's book editor's site:

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Gidday  K-Yee, My name is Matt B Lewis, I have written and / or illustrated over 20 picture books.  I have created 2 online courses for writing and illustrating picture books.  Please feel free to chek them out and see f they fit your needs.

hope this helps.
Cheers Matt B
#7 - May 10, 2021, 02:02 AM
« Last Edit: May 11, 2021, 12:03 AM by matthew-lewis »

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THANK YOU everyone, for all your feedback and all the great suggestions.  I'm following up on them!

@HaroldU - I've just purchased the book - it seems like a very good starting point (and cheap, too!).

#8 - May 31, 2021, 05:11 PM

I've been taking some classes on Domestika lately to hone some of my art skills (especially the "what do I do to digitally improve this" side), and while some classes are definitely better than others, I found a LOT of value in Catarina Sobral's Experimental Techniques for Picture Books. She gave me a really good understanding of how text and image interplay and the kinds of things to think about as I'm building a story. I'd even recommend it to people who are "just" writing text, because it really opened my eyes to how picture books function.
#9 - June 02, 2021, 05:59 PM

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Hi K-yee,
I am very excited about taking a picture book class taught by Nina Rycroft. I've taken her classes on Skillshare. It's for illustrators but i think may help writers too. I'm both, so that's why I am interested. xo
#10 - June 28, 2021, 07:04 AM
"You get in life what you have the courage to ask for." ~ Oprah


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