Society of
Children's Book Writers
and Illustrators

Speaker Profile - Rilla Alexander

Illustrator and Writer

Region: Oregon
Age Levels: 5-10, 11-13, and 14-17
Will Travel: Anywhere in the world
Skype Visit: No
SCBWI Profile: Member Profile
Speaker Email:


I an Australian illustrator, designer and book maker who lived in Berlin, Germany for many years but now make my home in Portland, Oregon. 

My picture books "The Best Book in the World" and "Her Idea" are published by Flying Eye Books, London.

I have also published books for "grown ups" that celebrate the creative process. "Neighbourhood" features the collaborative efforts of over 30 international artists reworking and remaking hand made toys.

I teach an 8 day masterclass in Character Design at the Pictoplasma Academy in Berlin each year, and enjoy doing workshops with people of all ages.

Presentation Description:

I love to share my love of reading and making books. My readings and workshops revolve around my books Her Idea and The Best Book in the World!

Please visit my websites and to see more images from my books (and some workshops too). Here is a video of a preschool class visiting my exhibition in Berlin, Germany.

Currently I talk about how I have been making books since I was very little and how they can too. I read The Best Book in the World and share some of my favorite books and explained how they inspired me to make this book.

I ask the class to share their “best books in the world” and to explain why. Is it the characters? The stories? What makes them want to read it? How does the story make them feel?

The students set about making their own “best book”. They decide what their book is going to be about and who the main character is. 

Depending on available time, the class either draw (only) their book cover with their name as the author or develop their story further. 

I award their book a Number 1 stamp on the cover.

My presentations and workshops can be tailored to suit your syllabus, the number of students, their age and the available time.

Can I just say how amazed I was with Rilla’s visit to read to the class. I can see that she has a real passion for writing and children – they were transfixed! We hope to see some budding writers at BCS and we look forward to hosting Rilla again soon! Rohan McCooty, Grade 4a, Berlin Cosmopolitan School, Berlin, Germany

Rilla invited us to join her for a reading of her book with our kindergarten students at her exhibition in Berlin. Not only did they love the book, they were so inspired by her and her infectious energy and passion that they came straight back to class and started creating their own storybooks! Her presentation was lively, animated, fun and thought-provoking. The teachers were all thrilled and impressed with how Rilla led the students through the narrative and illustrating process. It was a perfect complement to their classroom approach and lessons. We then invited Rilla to our classroom and the children showed them their work and Rilla read stories to our children who were all mesmerized and completely engaged with her and the beautiful books that she had brought. It was a fantastic experience for both the students and the teachers and I can´t wait to see all her future projects with other children as she has been an inspiration to my class. Aoife Crowe, Pre-school and kindergarten teacher, Berlin Metropolitan School.