How to Enter



You can apply for the Picture Hooks mentoring scheme via our online entry form. The deadline for applications is midnight (GMT) on 30th September.

Throughout the application, our panel will be looking for evidence of character, continuity and emotion in your work. The successful applicants will demonstrate commitment with potential and the desire to learn and develop.

Entrance Requirements

  • You must be an early-career or emerging picture book illustrator. This could mean that you have some published or commissioned work in your portfolio or you may have none at all.
  • A relevant degree, qualification or equivalent work experience is desirable.

Entry Fee

There is a £10.00 entry fee to cover the costs of  launching the scheme.  Please note that your entry will not be considered if we have not received this fee. When you submit the entry form you will be redirected to PayPal where your secure payment can be made.

Your Entry

  • A double page spread (in colour)
  • A three-page sequence of events (colour or b&w) that demonstrates appealing characterization, a sense narrative and throughout will encourage an emotional connection with children.
  • You should include a link to your website or online portfolio.
  • A statement explaining why you wish to be considered for the scheme and what you are hoping to gain from the mentoring process.

Preparing Your Entry

Note: text can be from any source and should not exceed 50 words. Remember, we are not looking for authors, we are looking for illustrators.

  • All entries should be submitted via our online entry form.
  • All entries should be in .pdf or jpg format.
  • The double-page spread should be saved in one document, with the three-page sequence divided into a further three documents.
  • Each of your submitted documents should not be more than 2 megabytes.
  • Your artwork does not have to be high-resolution or print quality at this stage (i.e. no less than 72 dpi with no need to go as high as 300 dpi) but you should make sure that it displays well on screen, with no pixellation/artefacting.  If using Photoshop you can use ‘Save for web and devices’ to compress your artwork as a .jpg file.  Illustrator/InDesign/Acrobat also allow for compression and optimising of artwork when creating .pdf files.
  • When naming your files please use this system: SurnameInitial1.jpg, with consecutive numbering for each piece i.e. Catherine Rayner’s double page spread would be RaynerC1.jpg, then her 3 page sequence would be RaynerC2.jpg, RaynerC3.jpg, RaynerC4.jpg.
  • Your entry must be entirely your own work.  Any copyright issues existing, or arising, are the applicant’s responsibility.

What Happens Next

Our panel of experts will compile a shortlist of candidates and invite them to interview, which will be held in October 2018.

For the interview, each illustrator will be asked to bring their sketchbook to show work in progress. They should also bring along their favourite picture book, and be ready to explain to the interview panel why they love it.

The decision will be communicated shortly after the interview stage, and the five selected illustrators will then be matched with an appropriate professional. The mentoring scheme will launch in November 2018.

Unfortunately we will not be able to provide individual feedback to unsuccessful applicants. To access further support from Picture Hooks keep an eye out for the workshops, talks and events that we hold throughout the year.