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Bob Ostrom Studio

charlie the intern photo

The 22nd Fall SCBWI Carolinas Conference – Part 3 and Charlie the Intern

Hey Readers,

Two things I wanted to cover this week. First was to introduce my new intern Charlie and the second was to talk a little more about my continuing plans for the SCBWI fall conference. Charlie is joining me from the AOIT (Academy of Information Technology) program at Apex High School. He will be helping me with the day to day tasks here at the studio as well as doing a little illustration work with me. Charlie is no stranger to Bob Ostrom Studio and has helped with several illustration jobs in the past. He is a very talented young artist who is excellent with Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator as well as having great technical skills. You may have noticed a few changes to this website and also to thanks to Charlies and his behind the scenes modifications.

Last week I had put together a little check list of items I wanted to get done for the fall SCBWI conference this year.  It seems the conference date is creeping up quickly and things are starting to pick up at Bob Ostrom Studio with fall right around the corner. I’ve been making steady progress with my list but it looks like I’m going to need to pick up the pace a little since I plan to add a few additional tasks this week.

  • Make new business cards… the real kind, not the cheap-out inkjet card stock kind
  • Get shirts printed
  • Begin printing out new pieces for the portfolio 
  • Design a rocking new postcard
  • Think of super cool affordable giveaway item
  • Take a nap
  • Continue working with my co-hosts on the business of art presentation

This weeks mission is to reach out to some of the other presenters and introduce myself. I’ve found it’s always helpful before an event if you can make a few connections ahead of time. That way when you get down there you can always find a few friendly faces and say hello in person. My plan is to see if I can find a few of the other faculty members I don’t know yet and introduce myself on LinkedIn.

So as many of you know I don’t do a lot of traveling for the business and speaking at this conference is a little bit a stretch for me. The way I see it though is if you never stretch you never grow and it’s time to do a little growing. What are you guys doing to stretch yourselves? Do you have any events planned this year to get you out and meeting people? I hope any of you who prefer to hibernate, like I do,  are pushing just a little bit harder to step outside your comfort zones and do a little growing. Well that’s all I have time for today. Lots of deadlines looming and lots of extra work to do for the conference. I feel like I’m in pretty good shape wit the check list and with the help of my new intern Charlie I’ve got things well in hand. 




SCBWI children's book layout showing alligator illustration

The 22nd Fall SCBWI Carolinas Conference – Part 2

Does anyone out there still have a printed portfolio? I think the last time I showed mine I was wearing a leisure suit and a pair of earth shoes (sorry kids, you have to be over 40 to get that joke). Turns out a printed portfolio is one of those things that come in really handy at an event like an SCBWI conference. Who knew? Looks like I’m gong to have to add it to the list. I’m also guessing only a fool would show up without some kind of handout or giveaway so I’m also adding business cards and postcards to the list as well. Whoa, all of the sudden a month doesn’t sound like a lot of time. If there’s one thing I’ve learned over the years though it’s how to get things done quickly. So here’s my “to do” list for the week.

  • Make new business cards… the real kind, not the cheap-out inkjet card stock kind
  • Get shirts printed
  • Begin printing out new pieces for the portfolio 
  • Design a rocking new postcard
  • Think of super cool affordable giveaway item
  • Take a nap
  • Continue working with my co-hosts on the business of art presentation

There you have it readers. That’s my list and I’m sticking to it. I’m going to have to ask you guys for a little favor or two, if you’re up for it. First if any of you guys catch me slacking off or straying from the list feel free to call me out on it.

Second, if you’ve ever attended one of these shindigs and would like to write a little guest post or share some advice on my blog please get in touch with me and let me know. It doesn’t have to be the Carolina’s event. Any SCBWI annual would be cool.

Okay, all for now gentle readers. Updates soon….

SCBWI - fall event logo

The 22nd Fall SCBWI Carolinas Conference

SCBWI Fall Conference

Hey did I tell you guys I’m going to be at the 22nd annual SCBWI fall conference of the Carolina’s this year? Yup, I’m gearing up to step out of the office and spend a couple of days down in Charlotte this September. Not only am I attending the event but I’ll be speaking and reviewing portfolios as well. How’s that for following up on my pledge to get out of the office and attend more events this year?
This is a first for me so I thought it might be fun to chronicle the experience and talk a little bit about my take on things as a rookie SCBWI attendee/speaker. Let me just preface by saying I have never been to a SCBWI event before and I have absolutely no idea what to expect. I will be speaking along side two very talented artists. Vanessa Brantley and Deb Johnson about the business side of art. I also will be reviewing portfolios as I mentioned earlier. Both of which are super cool because as any of you follow me on the vid-cast I co-host Drawn By Success know this is right up my alley. 

I’ll be updating you with posts about the event in the coming weeks including how I do with my speaking engagement. It should be quite an adventure and I’m really looking forward to it. If any of you are planning to attend the event please let me know and maybe we can plan a meet up. I always look forward to meeting new friends and saying hello to old ones.

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Tracey Smith

I could not have had a better, more gratifying experience collaborating with Bob on my first children's book! Working only over the phone, Bob expertly synthesized and translated my vision for the story. We bounced ideas off of each other extremely well. With all of his vast illustrating experience and extraordinary talent, he was still always open to my input and feedback.

The resulting illustrations are beyond well-executed and completely adorable. His images truly make the book. "These pictures are so cute!" is the first thing people say to me when they see it. Also consistently responsive, organized and timely, I would HIGHLY RECOMMEND working with Bob to any children's book author or publisher.

November 2011

Tracey Jane Smith