On Thursday 21st June, Templar Publishing celebrated its 40th anniversary at The Fable, Holborn where it announced the winner of its inaugural illustration prize competition.
The competition launched in January this year, based upon the principle that beautiful illustration is “at the heart” of Templar’s publishing. Lisa Edwards, Head of Children’s Publishing, Kings Road Publishing said of setting up the prize, which offers aspiring and unpublished illustrators a cash prize and the opportunity to have their submission considered for publication: “it seemed wrong somehow that we didn’t have a moment to celebrate new talent.”
Freelance illustrator, Emma Chadwick, won the dragon-themed competition with her “well thought through” submission Douglas in the Land of Faraway. Chadwick’s work stood out amongst the many submissions Templar received due to her “warm and detailed illustrations”. In the picture book, Douglas longs to visit the magical lands that he reads about in his stories, and so, one morning, he does. It’s a typical tale of adventure in a faraway land, but with one main difference; Douglas is a dragon. Edwards, said: “The judges loved the way Emma has subverted a trope in children’s publishing to show us a young dragon escaping his own world in order to have a ‘fantasy’ adventure with a human child on earth.”
We were overwhelmed by the quality and diversity of all the ideas submitted, so it was a really tough job selecting our shortlist!
-Genevieve Webster, Art Director, Templar Publishing
During the 40th anniversary celebration last night, Chadwick was presented with the £750 prize money. Student, Brittany E. Lakin, came in second place with The Dragon that Swallowed the Moon and retail assistant, Ann MacLeod, came in third, with Danni and the Dragons.
Genevieve Webster, Art Director, Templar Publishing, said: “We were overwhelmed by the quality and diversity of all the ideas submitted, so it was a really tough job selecting our shortlist! We’re delighted to have chosen three very different offerings all of which have the potential to become beautiful picture books.”
Emma has a very bright future ahead of her in children’s books and we are excited to have discovered her…
-Lisa Edwards, Head of Children’s Publishing, Kings Road Publishing
Edwards, added: “We were surprised at the number and quality of the submissions, from illustrators of all ages and backgrounds – it shows that there is an awful lot of talent out there, and it was difficult for our judges to narrow the field down to three. Emma has a very bright future ahead of her in children’s books and we are excited to have discovered her, along with the other shortlisted candidates, Brittany Lakin and Ann McLeod.”
Templar plans to run the illustration prize annually.