Society of
Children's Book Writers
and Illustrators

Illustrator Mentorship Oct 2021 – April 2022 – Character Design with Dan Yaccarino, award winning illustrator/writer and producer

Date(s) - 10/09/2021 - 04/07/2022
12:00 am

Illustrator Mentorship

Character Design

Dan Yaccarino, award winning illustrator, writer and producer

This mentorship provides the opportunity to work with Dan Yaccarino, award winning illustrator, writer and producer. Mentees will submit six 2-page character studies. Yaccarino will work with mentees to develop their character’s personality. A well-designed character’s personality is evident through how the character looks. From its basic physical shape, facial expressions, details like the characters stature, hair style, clothing, and colors used, will project their personality.
Each mentee will receive two 15-minute critiques with Yaccarino along with a SCBWI Gold Form for each critique.
Please create 2 pages for each:
• Turnaround
• Facial Expression Sheet (no more than 8 expressions)
• Gestures (no more than 8 gestures)
Yaccarino’s advice: “I would like to be able to understand the characters personality WITHOUT ANY EXPLANATION FROM YOU. Good luck!”

 Dan Yaccarino is an internationally acclaimed illustrator, writer, and producer who has created many children’s books and several animated series. He is the author and illustrator of over fifty books for children, most notably, Doug Unplugged (Knopf), Unlovable (Henry Holt & Co.), The Fantastic Undersea Life of Jacques Cousteau (Knopf), and Every Friday (Henry Holt & Co.). Dan’s work in children’s literature has garnered a host of prestigious awards and several of his books have been adapted into foreign editions, stage productions, and toys. Dan created the animated series Doug Unplugs, the Parent’s Choice Award Recommended Oswald, and the Emmy-winning Willa’s Wild Life. You can visit his website at

Illustrator Mentorship Timeline (All times are Pacific Time)

October 17 at 7 p.m.-Registration opens to San Diego Members (No cost to register and then will pay via PayPal)

October 20 at 7 p.m. Registration opens to all SCBWI Members (No cost to register and then will pay via PayPal)

October 26 before 7 p.m. Send Mentees Welcome email with payment code

October 3 by 9:00 p.m. – Mentees to pay on-line with provided code

December 3 – Mentees receive a link to their private Google folder. Click on the link to verify access.

December 4 by 7 p.m.-Art #1 Character Studies Uploaded. Mentees upload their images (.jpg) to their Google folder.

December 5 – Mentees receive confirmation their images were uploaded.

December 6  at 7 p.m.-participants sign up for Critique #1 time.

January 3 by noon-Faculty Returns manuscripts

January 4-5 -Zoom Critiques #1 (Afternoons up to 2 p.m. PT)

March 5, 2022 by 7 p.m.-Manuscript #2 Revised Character Studies Uploaded

March 6 – Mentees receive confirmation their images were uploaded.

March 7 – Mentees sign up for Zoom critique #2 time on Google Sheets.

April 3 by 7 p.m.-Faculty Returns manuscripts

April 4 and 5 -Zoom Critiques #2 (Afternoons up to 2 p.m. PT)

Mentorship Fee:

Mentees with a Season Ticket – $140.00

Mentees without a Season Ticket – $160.00


Due to the limit spots for the mentorship, the initial registration for the Illustrator Mentorship opens for SCBWI San Diego Region Members only on October 17 at 7:00 p.m. Pacific Time (See the two-tiered registration directions below.)

We’re sorry, but if you register on the 17th and are not a San Diego SCBWI Region member you will be removed and you will have to register again on Oct. 20th, if there are any openings.

If there are any openings, registration will open for all SCBWI members on October 20 at 7:00 p.m. (See the two-tiered registration directions below.)

San Diego Chapter’s Illustrator Mentorship 

Registration for this mentorship will be a two-tiered process:
1. Participants will register for the mentorship without paying.
2. Participants will be placed on a registration list on a first-come, first-served basis.
3. The 20 people accepted into the mentorship will receive an email with a special code they will use to make their payment.

Important note:  When you have been notified of acceptance you will have three(3) days from the date of the email confirmation to pay the Illustrator Mentorship fee or your spot will be released to the next person on the waitlist. (EX: First 20 will receive their email on Oct. 27th and will need to pay by Oct. 30th.)

4. The remaining people will be notified they are on a waiting list. If we have seven or more people on the waiting list, we will attempt to find another editor or agent to mentor the second group.