Heather Robertson

My name is Heather Robertson and I am studying with Maggy Roberts on the Illustrating Children’s Books Diploma Course. My illustration below is from the ‘Scary Poem’ Assignment and I found this to be the most difficult of all the assignments. Firstly because it was a subject matter I don’t enjoy much or spend much time looking at, and it was all in black and white which meant i had to work really hard on tonal values which I struggle with. Then I had to use ink, which is very unforgiving! I went through many scraps of paper, post it notes and tracing paper before I was happy with it, and wish I’d used tracing paper with some of my earlier pieces as it makes layout so much easier.

I had to do a lot of research before I was able to complete these pieces, and looked through countless children’s books at the library and in bookshops, looked at Halloween advertising and old movie posters etc. The design was entirely my own, but elements of it have been influenced by other artists and movies (the scary house). It was interesting to see how other artists interpret similar pieces.
I don’t think I’d choose to work in pen and ink again even though the piece was successful, as it doesn’t feel natural and comfortable to me and I prefer to work in pencils and in colour, but it was a good experience and it’s good to know that I can do it if i need to. It was a very challenging piece and I definitely learned a lot from it. It’s silly but the final idea for this was drawn on a small post it note, before I started the final drawing.

Heather Robertson
Illustrating Children’s Book Diploma
heather-robertson 41201

Keziah Herbert


I’m Keziah, and I am currently on the Children’s Book Illustration follow on course with Maggy Roberts. I finished the first part of the course with a distinction earlier this year, and it has made me much more confident with my work, and made me focus on my goal of being a freelance illustrator.

I’ve started taking small commissions, am working on my own children’s book ideas, and have now self published my very own adult colouring in book! “Colouring Birds – Vol.1” is printed with a lovely British company who helped me a lot to make sure everything was laid out correctly.

I have my books in uncoated paper for pencils, and silk finish paper for pens. Though the uncoated paper is best with pencils, it will still work with pens. The silk paper will not work with pencils.

You can find them on my ETSY shop, and until Monday I’m offer £2 off using COLOURING2 at the checkout. I’d love your support, and remember, take what you learn here and run with it. I’m certainly trying to!


Keziah Herbert
Children’s Book Illustration follow on course

kez-herbert-4 kez-herbert-3 kez-herbert-2 kez-herbert-1

Eleanor Patrick

Eleanor Patrick has completed the Illustration Diploma with flying colours and earned herself the highest award of Distinction.

The key to this course is the interpretation of a variety of writings and concepts, and students must work creatively and methodically to achieve an effective illustration across a number of different disciplines.

Eleanor produced a portfolio of illustrations supported by sketches and narratives explaining her thinking across six challenging assignments.  Most important of all, she demonstrated improvement with each assignment bringing the learning experience from preceding projects forward and stretching her personal and artistic boundaries.

This is part of her submission for the final assignment which concentrates on children’s illustration.  The students must plan an entire picture book in thumbnails before illustrating three page spreads. Eleanor’s outline of the book is a wonderful example of how it is done.

Written by Spencer Hill
Digital Illustration Tutor