Illustrate Your Picture Book Without Confusion or Overwhelm

Follow a Step-by-Step Creative Process


  • How to Stylize Your Picture Book
  • How to Compose Your Picture Book Pages with Values and Composition
  • How to Use Color for Storytelling
  • How to Develop Your Style and Make Final Art
  • How to Plan the Production of Your Book


Arree Chung is an author/illustrator and the founder of Storyteller Academy. Arree's Ninja! series has received starred reviews from Kirkus and School Library Journal. Kirkus also gave a starred review to Mixed, which recently won the FCGB award.

Today Arree lives a creative life, making stories for children. Arree spends most of his time making picture books, writing middle grade novels, and sharing his love for art, design, and storytelling with kids and dreamers everywhere.

Arree Chung

Author/Illustrator & Founder of Storyteller Academy

Published Books


Course Details

In this 9-week course, you'll learn how to illustrate a picture book from beginning to end! Arree helps you develop the style of your book and shows you how to illustrate your book, step by step. By the end, you will have a complete plan to illustrate your picture book!

Module 1:
Design the Right Style

Lesson 1: What Is Production Design?
Lesson 2: How to Use Adobe InDesign and Photoshop for Layout
Lesson 3: How to Research and Find Your Style
Lesson 4: How to Make Mood Boards for Style Development
Assignments & Resources

Module 2:
Value Studies and Character Designs

Lesson 1: What Are Value Studies and Why Make Them?
Lesson 2: How to Create Value Studies
Lesson 3: How to Make Style Experiments
Assignments & Resources

Module 3:
Developing Colors & Characters for Storytelling

Lesson 1: How to Use Color for Storytelling
Lesson 2: How to Create a Color Script
Lesson 3: Character Design Necessities
Lesson 4: Character Design Experiments
Assignments & Resources

Module 4:
Background Design and Sample Art

Lesson 1: Background Design Research
Lesson 2: Creating the Clean Line
Lesson 3: How to Make Final Art for Backgrounds
Assignments & Resources

Module 5:
Creating Final Art

Lesson 1: Creating Spot Illustrations
Lesson 2: How to Illustrate Magical Spreads
Lesson 3: How to Create Finished Artwork
Assignments & Resources

Module 6:
Building Your Production to Finishing Your Picture Book

Lesson 1: Art Production Tips and Tricks
Lesson 2: Building Your Production Plan
Lesson 3: Final Art Review and How to Continue Growing as an Artist
Assignments & Resources

Arree's Production Design File Library

Get access to Arree's design files he used for his picture books. You'll get his sketches, his art experiments and the color scripts he used to illustrate his picture books!

Everyone Has a Story to Tell

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Who Should Take This Class?

Just Starting...

Study story and design elements to develop your own unique story.

Intermediate Storytellers

If you've never made a dummy before, you'll be amazed by how it helps you simplify your story.

Advanced Writers

Does your story have the emotional heart and it-factor to hook readers? Make your story more kid-relatable by studying story and design. Nail your page turns!

Advanced Illustrators

Learn how to write great stories, while improving the design elements. Writing and illustrations should work together!

Frequently Asked Questions

Formal training in drawing is not a requirement, but the willingness to draw is. Many writers who don't consider themselves visual artists have benefited from making dummies. This course will give you an understanding of visual storytelling and help you cut words from your manuscript.

You can either continue working on your story or start with a new story. It's up to you. We also recommend a few stories to work on if you only want to make a dummy.

The course is completely online. You can log in any time and watch at your own convenience. During the term, you can join the live workshop sessions if you are part of the Makers Pro membership, or if you add the workshops to the purchase of the course.

Literary agents will have their own specific instructions on their websites. But in general, you will need a cover letter and a manuscript. The most important aspect of your submission is your story. You can go over the checklist to see if your story is ready.

The ability to tell a story is the most important skill to have as an author or illustrator. You will need to develop unique concepts for stories and be able to tell the story simply. If you are illustrating the book, you will need a strong art style and a good sense of design, in addition to storytelling.

Yes! A great story is often built on a character and the character's problem. We will work on developing your character through a variety of exercises and build the overall narrative arc of your story around your character.

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