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UCLAN Children’s Book Illustration Graduate Charlotte Caswell

Charlotte Caswell is an illustrator with a bachelor’s degree in Drawing and Image Making and a master’s degree in Children’s Book Illustration from the University of Central Lancashire.

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‘I began as a painter studying for a Fine Art degree but switched to a degree in drawing as I learned that I preferred to work in ink and produce work for more commercial purposes. After my bachelor’s degree, I decided to pursue a career in Children’s Book Illustration and I completed my master’s degree earlier this month. It has been an eye-opening year in terms of learning who I am as an artist and tailoring my work to suit the children’s market.’

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‘My Master’s degree project “The Stone in my Shoe” is a children’s book that I both wrote and illustrated. I wanted to write a story that centered around a familiar occurrence (a stone in your shoe) and make it into something magical. In this story, stones climb inside shoes intentionally and use them as a form of transport. In terms of the illustrations I have drawn particularly complex, busy forest scenes so that I may easily hide interesting details in them (e.g. toadstool houses and a tiny wishing well). I find that adding details like this to illustrations means that the book becomes interesting to look through even after the story has been read. All images are hand-drawn in ink and coloured digitally.

I am currently enjoying working on my own one-off illustrations, exploring new ideas in my sketchbook and taking on interesting commission work. I keep up with the art of other children’s book illustrators, editorial illustrators and often surface pattern designers. I hope to begin working on another children’s book very soon.’

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