Los Angeles Region

Mentorship Contest 2015: Illustrators or Author/Illustrators


Six-month mentorship with Deborah Nourse Lattimore and free tuition to SCBWI-L.A. Illustrator’s Day (Fall 2015). The mentorship includes six-months of critiques, phone calls and one-on-one meetings, plus a visit to Children’s Book World and a working illustrator’s studio.


Lattimore will help the winner to get the most out of various art techniques, to discover which media are the best fit, and to work on character design from all angles, including:

– Developing environmental spaces

– Changing light sources

– Adding variety of style and design

– Pacing action including “pause pages” and acceleration

– Pacing vignettes that spill over several pages

– Adding tension and variety to dummy and full-color art

– Pacing text and fonts for best effect

– Seeing ways to fix problems

Assignments will be tailored to the winner’s timetable, current projects and goals, and identified areas for improvement.

“Mentoring is as individual as the person coming in the door.”

– Deborah Nourse Lattimore


Submissions: March 1-March 31, 2015

Winner announced: April 25, 2015

Mentorship: May-October 2015

Illustrator’s Day: Fall 2015


1. You must be a member in good standing of the SCBWI-L.A. region.

2. Associate or Full members may apply. (No PAL members).

3. Limited to one entry per person.


To ensure fairness for all, no questions will be answered.


Your submission will consist of two parts:

I. Written responses to the following questions:

– What are your goals?

– What are your favorite stories, both from childhood and into the present?

– Which one of your projects – whether the seed of an idea, a work-in-progress, or a work in your “some day” file – would you most like to see published? In essence: What is your dream project?

II. Digital images of your best work

Provide up to 10 images of your best work: sketches, full color, ink, pencil, computer art, 3-D pieces, fabric, clay or construction. “I want to see whatever the artist feels is her or his best, and whatever interests them most. I’ve worked with artists on very young picture books all the way up to graphic novels. Everything interests me. And I have taught all these areas as well.” – Deborah Nourse Lattimore


Submissions not in compliance with the following rules WILL BE DISQUALIFIED.

1. DO NOT contact Deborah Nourse Lattimore directly.

2. Your submission must be emailed with the subject line MENTOR CONTEST to:

3. In the body of your email include:

– Your current SCBWI member name

– Address

– Phone numbers

– Email address

4. Provide your written answers to the questions in Roman numeral I (above) as a PDF attachment. Name your file: LAST NAME_ANSWERS. Example: Seuss_Answers.pdf

5. Your digital images should be 300 dpi, TIF or JPG files and no larger than 5 MB per image. Limit 10 images. Name your files with your last name and a short description: LAST NAME_SHORT IMAGE DESCRIPTION. Use numbers for multiple images with the same description. Example: Seuss_3D clay construction1.tif, Seuss_3D clay construction2.tif and Seuss_Ink sketch for graphic novel.jpg

6. Entries must be received by midnight on Tuesday, March 31, 2015.

About Deborah Nourse Lattimore

Deborah N. Lattimore is the author-illustrator of almost 40 books, and has been teaching writing and illustration for 30 years at UCLA, Art Center College of Art and Design, and Otis College of Art and Design. She has been nominated twice for the Caldecott Award, won the PEN award, the FOCAL award, the Golden Dolphin Award (competing with Julie Andrews, Walter Wick, and Smith and Scieszka – great members of our happy troupe!) She won the Color Me Bright Award alongside Halle Berry and Dr. Keith Black. She was an artist for Sesame Street and other NET/PBS programs, was an archaeological illustrator for the J. Paul Getty Museum and The American School in Athens, amongst others, and has been an adjunct instructor as an author-illustrator for the DODDS as well as the International Reading Association since 1990. She has 79 published students, including Dan Santat, and she loves working with artists and writers. She also loves SCBWI and is so happy to be selected as our debut mentor.