Samantha Wing

Student Samantha Wing is studying on the Illustrating Children’s Books Diploma Course. She emailed us her wonderfully colourful illustration, which was inspired by her two children. We are really looking forward to seeing more of Samantha’s work and also adding it to the blog in the coming weeks and months!

Samantha Said…

This is my first submission piece. I very much enjoyed doing it and it was based on my son and daughter for inspiration. My son is called Max he’s 3 and my daughter is called Darcy and she’s 4. The brief was Row Row Row your Boat.

Samantha Wing

Sian Brown

Tutor Maggy Roberts sent us some wonderful illustrations from student Sian Brown which we have added below. Read what Sian sent Maggy long with her illustrations. We love the anecdote about the Kidney Beans and Baked Beans….!

The bean people came about because I was visiting a friend who was saving kidney beans for next year . They were lovely with purple markings. I experimented and apart from it being time consuming, I didn’t think young children would appreciate what they were so I ended up with”baked beans”! I have been thrilled by the way my drawing has improved following the observation and repeated drawing of the bottles etc. and the fun of putting it together….

Sian Brown


Jane Crocker

We are thrilled to be able to post a wonderful testimonial from student Jane Crocker who has just finished the Illustration Diploma Course with tutor Spencer Hill. We have added some of Jane’s artwork for everyone to see below. We are also really looking forward to seeing some of Jane’s illustrations when she starts work on the Illustrating Children’s Books Course in the coming months!


I would like to say a very big thank you to Spencer Hill for his kind encouragements and brilliant illustration course. I would recommend this course, as the feedback came back with good constructive ways of looking at the assignments.

I can not express how much I have enjoyed this course, more than to say I was sad that I had finished it. I’m now about to sign up for the Children’s Book Illustration course. So I would also like to thank London Art College as well.

Jane Crocker


Heidi Hauser…..

Tutor Maggy Roberts received this wonderful email from her student Heidi Hauser who studied on the Illustrating Children’s Books Diploma Course. We are thrilled that Heidi enjoyed her course and gained confidence from it. We love her work and have added two of Heidi’s pieces below.

Congratulations to Heidi on completing the course and we look forward to seeing more of Heidi’s  illustrations from the Follow on Course in the coming months!


Hi Maggy,

I just wanted to email you to say a very big thank you, this has been a wonderful course and I have received great constructive feedback from you. I was looking for a little more confidence with my art and I have found it. I am going to think about doing the follow-on course… in the mean time I am going to be doing lots more painting and put some ideas together.

Thank you so much for a lovely course!
Many thanks


Winners of the London Art College Competition 2017

We are thrilled to announce the winner and runner up of this years 2017 London Art College Competition. We received a staggering 130 entries from our students all of which were at a very high standard. You can see all of the entries, finalists and winners on our website. We are now delighted to announce the winner and runner up…….

Congratulations to this year’s WINNER of the London Art College’s 2017 Competition

Emma Laurie with her portrait of  ‘Fenn’

This is a portrait of my cousin’s dog, Fenn, he is a lurcher cross. He is drawn from a photograph using Prismacolor pencils and on Daler Rowney pastel paper and a dash of white pen. In this piece I concentrated on the different colours and directions of light. Even a black dog has a surprising variety of colour!
Emma Laurie


RUNNER-UP – Wening Sekar  with her: ‘The Morning Series; Breakfast‘.


Thank you so much. I’m so happy to be the runner up of the Student Competition 2017. It’s an honor for me to know the tutors like my illustration.

The Morning Series; Breakfast was inspired by a content in a healthy TV program in my country about good behaviours in the morning, and one of it is eating breakfast. One of breakfast meal we usually have is fried rice, and meal is not complete without chili sauce and kerupuk (a kind of cracker) and a cup of tea. So, I draw them as the breakfast meal in my drawing. I draw it as colorful as and as cheerful as I can because it is morning series and we need to cheer up as morning is a new beginning.

I enrolled for Illustrating Children’s Book Course last year and finished it last July. As I am a student, I followed Illustrating Children’s Book facebook page. It give me many informations as I don’t open London Art College often. I knew about this competition from ICB’s facebook page, 2 days before the competition was closed. From the very beginning I enrolled in LAC, I wanted to join the Student Competition, and I’m glad I could catch up it this year.

Thank you.

Wening Sekar

London Art College Meeting

Our yearly meeting this year was held later than usual in Bristol, UK and although a number of tutors were unable to attend, we had a very productive meeting. We are always striving to improve our service for our current and prospective students. The photo below was taken after the meeting. From left to right…..Rupert Douglas Jones, Paul Weaver, Vanessa Weaver, Stewart Roberts, Maggie Roberts, Alan Dedman, Jem Bowden, Melanie Phillips and Alison Douglas Jones.


Emma Allen

My name is Emma Allen. A few years after the birth of my daughter I found myself at a crossroads in my life and wondering what to do next. My childhood dream of becoming an Illustrator had got lost somewhere along the way and I had sidestepped into magazine production and then motherhood. But I knew I had more to give and my true creative side had been stifled – the problem was I wasn’t sure how rusty it was or how to bring it back to life. My daughter helped me to tentatively find my way back without even knowing it; suddenly my focus was on painting magical murals for her bedroom and children’s picture books were finding their way into my home, inspiring and amazing me. I got back into painting and found that I was indeed rusty, but my focus and motivation were gaining new vigour with every passing day. I felt that my journey back to creativity needed guidance and so I started looking into courses. However, with a toddler to look after I didn’t have the luxury of heading off to college or university; a correspondence course seemed like the perfect solution. That is when I discovered the London Art College, and enrolled on their ‘Illustrating Children’s Books’ course.

It was like a whole new world for me. I realised how much I had needed this; how much I had needed to use my brain and get back in touch with my artistic side. It was a part of who I was and it needed nurturing back to life. The course was fantastic, with projects that challenged me and motivated me, encouraged me to use art materials that I hadn’t tried before, and to think and create outside of my comfort zone. It amazed me how much I enjoyed creating artwork around subject matters that would never have occurred to me if left to my own devices. I would go as far as to say that the illustration course brought me back to life. I had been lost, but Illustration helped me to re-discover myself. The feedback I received from my tutor, Maggy Roberts, was invaluable and very thorough. The student forums were also fantastic; it was wonderful to be able to discuss illustration with inspiring like-minded students. When I won the ‘Student of the Year’ competition in 2012 I could hardly believe it, I was so thrilled and astonished.

Before the end of my course I was approached by a charity, ‘My Mother’s Love’, to illustrate a children’s E-Book. I was thrilled (and a little nervous) and happily accepted. Since then I have illustrated another two E-Books for them, and illustrated web banners, re-designed logos, and continue to have a wonderful working relationship with them. I had realised long before the end of my time with the London Art College that I knew for certain that I wanted to be an Illustrator, and though it hasn’t always been easy I have made that life for myself. It has been a steep learning curve and probably the hardest part is to get on the radar of the people who might want to commission you. Making people aware of your existence in the first place is not as easy as it sounds, and there is a lot of competition out there from about a zillion talented artists.

The first year was tough, I earned enough to break even on art materials and work was a trickle, but it was steady. Since then my earnings have increased year on year and I am always busy. I haven’t had a break in work since 2013 and I get repeat commissions from happy existing clients which is really great – it is wonderful to know that they are so pleased with the work I have done for them that they want to come back to me for more. There can be a long gap between wages coming in, especially if I am working on a bigger project like a story book which can take a long time to complete, so it is quite feast or famine, but I love it so much that I literally cannot imagine doing any other job now. Being my own boss is fab – doing my own tax returns is less fab, but hey, it has to be done. I’ve had to learn to do contracts, invoices, spreadsheets, marketing myself, maintaining my website – there is more to it than just creating the art, but strangely I enjoy all of that too.

This month a new book I illustrated for the publishing company Clear Fork Publishing has just gone on sale, and I am so excited. It is called ‘Sarah’s Song’ and is written by the wonderful children’s author Rosie J.Pova. It tells the story of a sensitive young girl called Sarah who worries about the changes in her grandma as she becomes elderly and how she turns to music to try and get her grandma singing and dancing again. It was a privilege to illustrate the book and is such a wonderful feeling knowing that it is out there on bookshelves where people can buy it. The process of working with the wonderful people at Clear Fork Publishing and helping to create the book has been so inspiring. ‘Sarah’s Song’ is available at the Publishers website and on Amazon.

I am currently working on a product related story book for a client in Canada, and also a Christmas themed biblical story book for a client in the USA, which I am thoroughly enjoying. I have some book ideas of my own bubbling away in the background, but finding time to develop them has been a challenge. In the mean time I am happy to be so busy doing something that I feel so passionate about. Thank you London Art College for giving me the confidence I needed to pursue my dream. You can find my website at

Emma Allen
Illustrating Children’s Books Diploma

Ana Lucia Alvear – Botanical Painting

I wanted to submit one of my botanical paintings to the London Art College Competition 2017, as I have done before, however this time I was delayed and did not do it. I read about the Jackson´s Plant Life: Botanical Illustration Competition through your blog, so I decided to submit my Cedrela Montana to their competition.

This painting is a watercolour on paper (cold pressed 300 g/m2), 29,5 x 40 cm. It is of the Cedrela montana (family Meliaceae, common name: Flor de Palo or Flor de Madera) and is a native tree from the Andes of Colombia, Ecuador and Peru. It grows between 1050 and 3600 meters of altitude, up to 20 meters tall. It’s inflorescence are between 12 to 30 cm long, with small greenish to cream colored flowers that grow in bunches. The fruits are ligneous capsules, lenticellate and brown that contain winged seeds.

I planted one of these graceful trees in my home garden at Cumbayá (a valley near Quito, Ecuador at 2320 meters of altitude) twenty years ago. During these last weeks with it plentiful leaves, it has flowery bunches and mature fruits with seeds flying around. Painting details directly in front of this plant was a great challenge for a student like myself. Even more, submitting the result of this work for a botanical art competition since I consider myself a beginner – although I have learned a lot with my tutor Shevaun.

My purpose was to share and face this work with some other competitors works as a way of learning and encouragement in my own practice. I have had the opportunity to observe on line almost 190 botanical pieces of this competition, most of them are excellent paintings in a very high level and I think it has been a good experience.

Ana Lucia Alvear

Portraits Ian Scott

London Art College student Ian Scott has been creating pencil studies of his families hands for one of the assignments on the Drawing and Painting Diploma Course. You can see a few of them below.

Once Scott had practiced studying hands and faces in his sketchbook, he moved onto creating portraits in colour.  The portrait below was painted on canvas using oils. It is stunning and a real achievement. From the beautiful soft skin tones to the textured waves in the models hair with well placed highlights to create the three dimensional form. The overall painting is superb.

We hope that the artwork Scott has created here is an inspiration to our students and readers!

ian scott

ian scott

ian scott

Adele Gregory – Drawing and Painting

Student Adele Gregory is current working on our Drawing and Painting Diploma Course with tutor Paul Weaver. Adele has been experimenting with watercolour,  layering of colours and wet in wet washes. We love the vibrancy and freshness of the painting and feel that Adele has created a superb flower study and absolutely love the colours she has used! Well done Adele, we look forward to seeing more of your drawing and paintings soon!

Adele Gregory