Short Course: Introduction to Creating Picture Books

An introduction to creating picture books for 0-6 year olds with Claire Alexander.

When, Where

On this course, you will create a dummy picture book for 0-6 year olds with contemporary market appeal. As both a professional author and illustrator, Claire Alexander is uniquely placed to teach both writing and illustration.

The course will inspire you with new ideas, introduce you to relevant literary and artistic techniques and equip you with the commercial know-how to make a success of your project.

As well as benefiting from Claire’s expert guidance, you’ll have access to House of Illustration exhibitions throughout: a rich source of visual and conceptual inspiration.

During the course you will:

  • Gain an overview of the market and get advice on getting published.
  • Learn how to create stories with convincing characters.
  • Experiment with a range of appropriate artistic mediums.
  • Explore narrative themes, structures and writing styles.
  • Learn how to storyboard a book with compelling layouts.
  • Learn how to make a dummy book to send to publishers.
  • Receive one-to-one and group feedback on your work.
  • Get free entry to House of Illustration exhibitions for the duration of the course.
  • Be offered the opportunity to enrol on Claire’s intermediate level evening course where you can develop your book idea further and present it to a visiting publisher and agent at the end of the course.

Please bring:

  • 2B pencil
  • Eraser
  • Biro
  • A3 sketchpad
  • Notebook
  • Slim A4 ringbinder
  • A3 portfolio or plastic wallet to carry your artwork and art materials (recommended)

All other materials provided by House of Illustration.

Please feel free to bring along any relevant work you've already created. However, this is a beginners’ course, so please don't worry if you don't have anything to bring. Claire will be there to inspire new ideas throughout the course.

About the tutor:

Claire Alexander is an author/illustrator based in London. She recently completed two book collaborations with writer Sean Taylor, illustrating Humperdink Our Elephant Friend and The Snowbear. Other recent books include The Best Bit of Daddy’s Day, Millie Shares and Monkey and the Little One. The latter was shortlisted for the 2015 Junior Design Awards and listed as one of the top ten best new picture books of the year by the Independent Book Sellers Association.

A previous book Back to Front and Upside Down, dealing with the subject of dyslexia, won an American Library Association award in 2013. Other titles include Small FlorenceLost in the SnowThat’s When I knew and Lucy & the Bully, which also won an award in the US. Claire studied Fine Art at the Kent Institute of Art and Design and has a BA honors degree in Painting. She studied Illustration at Putney School of Art and has been teaching her own picture book courses for over ten years.

Feedback from Claire's previous courses:

I really enjoyed this course – it was fun, really informative and engaging without pressure. It's helped me to rediscover my love of illustration and to discover writing is a lot harder than it seems!

Course dates and booking:

This course runs for 10 weeks: Tuesdays 21 April – 30 June 2020, 7-9.30pm. No class during half term on 28 May.

To book, please select the start date from the drop-down menu below. The price refers to the whole course, not individual sessions. This course is for those aged 18+ only.

Any questions? Please check our FAQs.


Tickets Price Number Total price
Total amount £0.00
Full course with Gift Aid£412.50 £412.50
Full course£375.00 £375.00

Tickets are non-refundable. Aged 18+ only.

The price refers to the whole course, not to individual sessions, and entitles you to House of Illustration entry for the duration of the course.

Your ticket confirmation email may go to the email address linked to your Paypal account. Please contact if you do not receive it.

Tickets are subject to our general terms and conditions.

Gift Aid

The Gift Aid price includes a voluntary 10% donation which allows us to claim back 25% of the total price paid. This small donation makes a huge difference to a charity like ours which receives no public funding – thank you! UK taxpayers only. Find out more at our Gift Aid page.