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Ben Wood is a children’s book illustrator. He has illustrated over 25 books, including Blast Off! by Shelly Unwin, the Squishy Taylor series by Ailsa Wild, and the hilarious new series Real Pigeons by Andrew McDonald. He has also had several titles on the CBCA Notable list in 2016 and 2017. Ben offers interactive sessions that are a lot of fun.
I was born in Melbourne, but grew up in rainy South Gippsland surrounded by bush and farmland. Lots of cows and potato farms! I’ve moved around a bit over the years, but am back in Victoria now.
Every book I get to work on is a highlight. I’m working with Andrew McDonald on Real Pigeons at the moment and am finding it “super coo!” It is about a team of pigeons would become friends while solving crimes in the city. The text is mixed together with illustrations in a fluid and fun way. A great format to get timid readers keen!
Teaching students about visual narrative is something I’m very passionate about. Showing something through an image is just as much a challenge as writing. In my sessions I’m able to teach students how to problem solve though drawing. We have a lot of fun!
I have also worked as a bookseller in bookstores. I loved selling books to parents and families. I can go on and on about children’s literature once I get started! (Watch out!)
I love eating! And when I’m not eating, I like to talk about eating- and food! Some of my favourite foods are tacos, sushi, burritos, green spaghetti and raspberries. Yum!
The girls were very enthusiastic about the session. They loved not only hearing about the process of illustration for Ben’s books but really appreciated the chance to try out some of the processes as well.
We really appreciated how well-balanced the session was with Ben; we heard about the book, his illustration process and there was still plenty of time for the guided drawing activities. We all gained so much from his insights.
Ben Wood was an excellent engaging speaker. He was punctual well prepared and the kids were very involved. They all had a great time and left with smiles on their faces clutching their artwork from the session. Everything was very professional and more importantly fun for the 60 students who attended.
The students really loved Ben Wood’s visit. They really enjoyed the workshop approach and all the tips and hints on how to draw characters and how to use shapes and background to complete the illustration. The students were really engaged and wanted to continue their work once they arrived back at their classrooms.
Ben was fantastic with the students and lovely to communicate with. He was punctual and organised. His workshops were wonderful and left the students inspired. He spoke appropriately and had the students interacting throughout the workshop which was great. They were talking about it for the rest of the day. We would highly recommend him to other schools.
Year 5 teachers said the children were enthralled and mesmerised. They continued drawing long after he had left. Absolutely loved it.
Ben was on time, actually early, he was friendly, professional and kept the kids engrossed. Would highly recommend him.
Just wanted to say how awesome it was to have Ben Wood visit our school yesterday. Our students were left inspired by his work and stories. The students are still talking about him today!
Students had a great experience visiting with Ben Wood as part of our Book Week celebrations. Ben told everyone about his early life and how he became self- taught illustrator. He demonstrated that drawing characters is as easy as starting with a shape. He then showed how to add feelings with eyebrows and mouths and also how to draw clothes as well as a background to the picture. Students were then given an opportunity to create their own character. Some amazing pieces of work were created and from the enthusiasm demonstrated, students had a wonderful time!