I have been a longtime fan of Will Hillenbrand’s illustrations. I had the pleasure of meeting Will at an SCBWI Conference years ago, at Hoftstra University in NY. He is a very nice guy, and very generous in sharing his infectious love of children’s book art! At the time, he was signing his Counting Crocodiles book, written by Judy Sierra, and he wrote the sweetest inscription to my then-infant son, Jackson! Today, it is a joy to pull the book off the shelf and read the inscription and the wonderful rhyming story! Brings back great memories!
Fast forward to when Jackson was a Freshman in High School and the Delaware Arts Castle held an exhibit opening with several illustrators, including Will, among others. It was great to introduce him to Jackson, a budding illustrator himself. Will, again was so kind and encouraging, lending the advice that artists often do, “always carry a sketchbook!” Needless to say, we both walked away from that event, completely inspired, with our shared love of children’s books and their art, reinforced and cemented.
I encourage you to take a moment, take your kids, take the grandparents, and go see the exhibit, while it is here… also check out Will Hillenbrand’s website! It is a treat to be on his email list as well, for he sends out an illustration at every holiday! Very fun! You are never too old for a children’s book!