Orange Beak Studio News

You can keep up to date with news from Orange Beak Studio, Alice, Ness and Maisie here!
June 2020
Orange Beak is beginning a new chapter due to recent changes.

Going forward the Orange Beak team will now be co-founders, Maisie and Ness. Tony will be continuing to work as our administrator and Alice as an associate, offering editorial feedback.

Pam will not be continuing with us at Orange Beak. As a founding member Pam has been a huge part of the Orange Beak journey and she will be very much missed. We know that Pam will continue to spread her wisdom as an Anglia Ruskin University lecturer, and to inspire through her beautiful book work.

The Orange Beak team will continue to provide our unique and professional services from tutorials to workshops and more. These are tailored towards your individual illustration and book goals. We are excited about the future and very much look forward to working with you. 

Thanks x

May 2019
Klaus Flugge Prize 2019

The Extraordinary Gardener by Sam Boughton has been shortlisted for the Klaus Flugge Prize 2019. This book was designed by Ness and published by Tate.
May 2019
St Bride’s ‘Collections and Collaborations’ 

Pam and Ness have worked together on a limited edition poster for St Bride’s. They were asked to create a poster as a visual celebration of the St Bride’s Library. 

April 2019
Maisie has created the illustrations for Barrington Stoke’s new website.

Maisie was commissioned by Barrington Stoke to create a series of illustrations all based around children and families reading.

Barrington Stoke are a brilliant publisher who work with writers and illustrators to publish readable, accessible books to help all children enjoy reading. Amongst other things, they use a dyslexic friendly font, consider the paper, layouts and use lots of illustrations to break up the blocks of text. 

You can see the new website and Maisie’s illustrations here

Nov 2018
Thornhill won the 2018 British Book Design & Production Award for Graphic Novels!

You can read more about the Award and see the other shortlisted entries and winners here

Nov 2018
Ness has designed 5 of the books nominated for the Greenaway /Carnegie Awards! 
Ness worked on the design of the following books....

Boughton, Sam. The Extraordinary Gardener
Publisher: Tate Publishing 

Grey, Mini. The Last Wolf
Publisher: Jonathan Cape 

Hughes, Laura (illustrator) Jones, Pip (author).
Quick, Barney, RUN!
Publisher: Faber & Faber

McIntyre, Sarah. The New Neighbours
Publisher: David Fickling Books 

Shelton, Dave. The Book Case
Publisher: David Fickling Books. 

You can read more about the awards and see the full list here

Oct 2018
2018 Nami Concours Finalist
Illustrations from The Happy Prince have been shortlisted for the Nami Concours 2019 awards. You can find out more about the competition here

Sept 2018
2018 Golden Pinwheel Young Illustrators Competition Finalists
Maisie has been shortlisted, with illustrations from The Happy Prince, for the 2018 Golden Pinwheel award. The competition received a ground-breaking record of 1,320 entries from 58 countries and territories, which translated into 6,600 creative and high-quality illustrations. Five acclaimed illustration specialists from China and abroad used their personal perspective and professional background to select this year’s 50 finalists. You can read more about this competition and see the list of finalists here

Sept 2018
Wolves and Apples 2018
Pam will be speaking at the one day conference, Wolves and Apples on 29th September. Wolves & Apples is a brilliant full-day event for aspiring children’s writers to get practical advice and guidance (via panels, talks and workshops) from established professionals, including authors, agents and publishers. Other speakers include, Anne Fine, Felicity Trew and Tamsin Winter. 
To book your place at the conference, and for more details click here 
Sept 2018
UKLA Awards 

Thornhill has been longlisted in the 12-16 years category for the 2019 UKLA Awards. See the full longlisting here
Sept 2018
Judging Books By Their Covers
Ness will be speaking with Alice Williams and Tilda Johnson on 22nd September at Manchester Central Library. 
Sept 2018
British Book Design & Production Awards. More nominations for Thornhill!
Thornhill has been shortlisted in two of the categories for the British Book Design & Production Awards. It is in both the Graphic Novel and Children’s Trade 9 to 16 Years categories. Fingers crossed! 

July 2018
Exclusive Early Release and Book Launch!
Maisie’s next book, Anna and Otis, is out on 9th August. However, there is an EXCLUSIVE early release and book launch on 27th July, at Heffers Bookshop in Cambridge. Please do come along and say hello, and get your signed copy early! 

July 2018
Ness is in Manchester!
As well as tutorials in Cambridge and certain days in London, Ness will be branching out and doing tutorials up North too! Manchester to be precise - spreading the Orange Beak Studio wisdom!

June 2018
Drawing, Playing, Making & Exploring at Homerton College

7th September 2018
The Cambridge Children’s Literature Research Centre, a collaboration between Homerton College and the University of Cambridge Faculty of Education, will be hosting a talk from Pam as part of the conference “Synergy and Contradiction: How Picture Books and Picturebooks Work”.
June 2018
Pam will be speaking at the Cartoon Museum
30th June Comics artist and writer Woodrow Phoenix (Rumble Strip, She Lives), writer and illustrator Pam Smy (Thornhill) and cartoonist and writer Andi Watson (Breakfast After Noon; Slow News Day) join Cartoon Museum Director Becky Jefcoate to discuss new approaches to storytelling and finding your own voice as an artist.

May 2018
Exhibition of The Happy Prince in Madrid
From May until September, the Caixa Forum in Madrid will be showing a selectio of illustrations from Maisie’s first picturebook, The Happy Prince.
The exhibition also shows the work of the other seven winners of the International Fair of Bologna Illustration Prize. The winners of the eight editions are: Philip Giordano (Italy), Page Tsou (Taiwan), Evelyne Laube and Nina Wehrle (Switzerland), Satoe Tone (Japan), Catarina Sobral (Portugal), Maisie Paradise Shearring (United Kingdom), Juan Palomino (Mexico) and Manuel Marsol (Spain)You can read more about the exhibition here

April 2018
Orange Beak Illustration Retreat
We are very happy to announce that this August we will be running our first Orange Beak Illustration Retreat. The retreat is near Modbury, South Devon and will run over 5 days. Keep an eye on our Retreat Page on our website here for more details. Or, if you would like to express interest and recieve an email with the full details then please do send us an email to

April 2018
Interview with Picturehooks
Ahead of their conference in Middlesborough we were interviewed by Picturehooks. You can read the interview here
You can book your tickets for the conference here
April 2018
Thornhill by Pam shortlisted for Kate Greenaway Award
Thornhill has been shortlisted for the CILIP Kate Greenaway Medal 2018. The shortlists of 15 books (for both Carnegie and Kate Greenaway) were whittled down from a longlist of 40 titles (20 per medal), selected from a record-breaking 237 nominated books, each read by the 12 members of the judging panel. You can read more about the award and other shortlisted titles here

You can now watch a video of Pam talking about Thornhill, the ideas behind the story, the process of making the book and more. You can watch this video here
April 2018
SCBWI with Orange Beak Picturebook Retreat
Picturing Words and Writing Pictures
We are very happy to announce that we will be at this years SCBWI illustration retreat from 13th - 16th July. 
For full information, with details about the venue, and booking, see here

This retreat is now sold out, however keep an eye on our news page as we will be announcing another illustration retreat very soon! 
April 2018
Adult Illustration Masterclass: Characterful Environments
Learn how to make convincing environments for characters to create strong narrative illustrations.

Pam will be leading an illustration masterclass on 23rd June at the House of Illustration. You can read more and sign up for the event here

April 2018
Adult Illustration Masterclass: Writing for Illustrators
Maisie will be giving one of the four SCBWI masterclasses at the House of Illustration on May 12th. 

You can find out more information and book your tickets here

April 2018
Pam is at the Hay Festival 2018
Pam is running an illustration workshop at Hay Festival on 30th May at 1pm. This event is for 12+ and will focus on exploring the relationship between image and text using pen and ink.
See more about this event and the programme for Hay Festival here
This event is now sold out! 

March 2018
This month sees the publication of two new picturebooks designed by Ness. 
The Last Wolf
Written and illustrated by Mini Grey and published by Ladybird
The New Neighbours
Written and illustrated by Sarah McIntyre and published by David Fickling Books

March 2018
Picturehooks Conference (19th May) 
Orange Beak Studio will be taking part in the Picturehooks Conference. This will be held at Middlesborough Central Library.

Other speakers at the conference are Deidre McDermott, Picture Book Publisher and Creative Director at Walker Books and Sarah Lawrence from Seven Stories in Newcastle. The key note speaker is award-winning illustrator Chris Mould.

You can buy tickets here for the Conference, and find out more about Picturehooks and their incredible work here

February 2018
More nominations for Thornhill!
Kate Greenaway Longlist We are all very happy (and particularly Pam) that Thornhill has been selected for the Kate Greenaway longlist, you can see the other books nominated here
Leeds Book Awards Thornhill has been shortlisted for the Leeds Book Awards in the 14-16 catagory.  Have a look at all the shortlisted books and read the wonderful reviews by children here

February 2018
Prema Arts
Pam has an exhibition of prints from Thornhill and original paintings at Prema Arts. You can find out more about the exhibition and Prema Arts here

February 2018
Painting the Tate Window
Maisie has painted a Happy Prince window at the Tate Riverside Bookshop entrance. It will be on display for 6 weeks (until 1st May)

February 2018
Waterstones Award
We’re delighted to announce that Pam Smy’s graphic novel, Thornhill has been nominated for the Waterstones Prize, in the Older Fiction category. You can see the full list of nominations here

January 2018
International Teaching This month Pam is spending a week in Iceland teaching at the art school, Myndlistaskólinn í Reykjavík.  The focus of the week is to look at aspects of making a character, focussing on environment, costume and physical characteristics, using film, comics and children's books as reference.
January 2018
Anna and Otis

We’re very excited to share the cover for Maisie’s first picturebook with Two Hoots Books, Anna and Otis. Out in August this year!
Read more and pre order your copy here

January 2018
Ness at Goldsmiths, University of London
Ness is the Leader of the Publishing Module on the MA in Children’s Literature: Children’s Illustration pathway, 2018.With guidance and assignments, this module covers information to enable you to navigate the world of children’s publishing.

Find out more about the course here

November 2017
Nominations for Thornhill
Pam Smy’s graphic novel, Thornhill has been nominated for both the Carnegie Medal and Kate Greenaway Award 2018. You can find out more about these awards here