Random House submissions

  • SVS OG

    Hey guys, I mentioned in my post about the SCBWI conference that Martha Rago had requested some illustration samples. We went back in forth a few times, and she gave some very positive feedback, but I just heard last night that they're going in a different direction for the project I was being considered for. I'm bummed, but it was such a great connection and Martha was really wonderful and encouraging during our interactions.

    So, great news is that I now have 2 more portfolio pieces! Thought I'd share them here:



  • SVS Team SVS Instructor Pro SVS OG

    great job nat! you never know where this might lead!! This is a marathon and not a sprint. So just getting in there and making the connections is a very important step.

  • SVS OG

    @Lee-White Thanks, and you are so right. Last year I illustrated a book for a publisher I had connected with 2 years previous, then called me out of the blue! So, I'm in it for the long haul I guess!

  • SVS OG

    These are really great @natiwata !! There is something especially perfect about the first one - the gesture of the octopus is awesome! everything about that one looks just right - (they are both really nice though of course) Great portfolio pieces

  • SVS OG

    They are great pieces @natiwata! Even though you didn't get the job you've made such huge strides forward, making connections and new portfolio pieces, I'm sure you're going to get where you want!

  • Pro SVS OG

    Yes, definitely it was a great opportunity to establish a contact and now she has you on file! Definitely it can be a waiting game...The two pieces with the octopus are really great! Only think I may think about is if there is a way to let the octopus express emotions...maybe some form of eyebrows?

  • SVS OG

    @smceccarelli I actually sent her this because I had the same thought, and it sounded like it was a good thing to show:


  • Pro SVS OG

    @natiwata I definitely like the emoting octopus best! There is always something disconcerting about characters that have no recognizeable emotion.

  • SVS OG

    Sorry you didn't get the contract but sounds like you made an excellent connection that will pay off in the future. You did at least get some really great pieces for your portfolio. Very nice work.

  • Pro SVS OG

    Congrats for being so closely considered!!!! Your work is great. And Martha seems very kind. I dug up this rejection I got from her in 2002 to show a friend after the SCBWI conference. She was feeling a little bad about the state of her portfolio and I said "you have to start somewhere," and "you should see what I once sent out!!!!" I sent these to Martha Rago, I think in 2002 and how sweet was she to even send back a response; "Presentation is very important," That back in the days when I was green and knew nothing about book publishing and there was no such thing as SVS. Don't worry something great is coming!!!!!!


  • Thank you for sharing. They look beautiful. 🙂

  • I really love these. I love the color choices and the character design, this looks like the kind of children's book I would buy for my daughter. Keep up the great work.

  • @lmrush Its so encouraging to see that I am not the only one who innocently sent out 'beautiful work' to publishing houses!!!! I was so hurt by the one publisher who replied to me and told me to work on becoming more professional, but now I am so grateful.

  • SVS OG

    @lmrush Wow! That is awesome, thanks for sharing. She seems to be a very kind and considerate person, fun to know your story with her from so many years ago!

    @NickA Thanks!

    @joanie-stone Thank you, that's a high compliment! Hopefully you can buy one of my books for your daughter someday 🙂 I just looked at your portfolio, it's fantastic! I love the progress post you did of the boy hanging over the alligators, it's amazing what consistent practice can do for our work.

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