Sharon Vargo (in purple and black in the photo), did most of the work for it and it was a lovely time!
We have dozens of illustrators in Indiana SCBWI (20-some came), but we feel like we don't them very well, so we started with having everyone introduce themselves and show us a bit of their work. What great artwork! Throughout the day we had 4 speakers:
Nathan Clement (the tall guy in the photo) spoke on how his first picture book was acquired and working with his publisher on the next 2 books. We also got a peek at his process for illustrating in Adobe Illustrator.
Michele Farley (sparkly blue shirt front and center) was on the 2012 Caldecott Committee. I could listen to her for hours! She gave us a humorous and insightful glimpse into how it all works and why she loves certain picture books. We also heard why some beautifully illustrated books ended up not being eligible for the Caldecott (on one they found out the illustrator resided outside the US, on another they decided it was more of a book with pictures rather than a picture book, etc.)
Patrick Girouard (other guy) shared about the various markets that children's illustrators can find work in. He's done just about everything, and urged us to look at anything that has an illustration similar to our style on it and contact the people who made it. Easy enough way to market.
Jennifer Zivoin (dark hair) discussed the process of finding and working with an art rep and how to figure out if you're ready for one or even if you need one.
4Kids Books in Zionsville let us use their meeting room, and because of a regional grant from SCBWI, we were able to offer this Illustrator's Day including lunch for free for our SCBWI members. How cool is that!