7-Imp’s 7 Kicks #460: Featuring
Up-and-Coming Illustrator, Kerry Dwyer

h1 December 6th, 2015 by jules

It’s the first Sunday of the month, which means a student or debut illustrator visits. Today, it’s artist and illustrator Kerry Dwyer, who studied at RISD and has a “newly minted website in children’s book illustration after years in a career in television animation and gaming.” Kerry shares some more artwork below and tells us all a bit more about herself.

Without further ado . . .


On Deciding to Be an Illustrator:


The realization that illustration could be a way to continue creating worlds and characters into adulthood got me interested in illustration. Books like Revolting Rhymes and The Twits by Roald Dahl / Quentin Blake and the worlds of Richard Scarry made me realize that storytelling was an important form of play for adults. I was also quite inspired by the fact that my mother told me Holly Hobbie lived a few towns away.



On Influences:


As of late, I’ve been taken with the work of Wolf Erlbruch, and William Steig has been a big influence on me (though there is not always a direct visual link) — as well as a lot of lesser-known, older illustrators, such as Peter Newell. I’m also inspired by humorous writing, especially that of the absurd and dry vein, in children’s, adult literature, film, music lyrics, and from the mouths of my loved ones.



Other favorites include James Marshall, Maurice Sendak, Palmer Cox, W. Heath Robinson, Kevin Waldron, Adam Rex, Marla Frazee, Greg Pizzoli, Dan Santat, Christian Robinson, David Roberts, Cátia Chien, and many more. Rowboat Watkins’ new book, Rude Cakes, is pretty amazing.



On How Television Animation
Influences Her Work:


Animation is great, but the still image has always had my heart. I am enamored with the intimacy of the physical book. I think there is even more value today, than as ever before, for a child to have as much time as needed with an image. More time to project your own imagination on to it. Though I will admit that the energy of animation, the exposure to so many stories, the influence of the humor and people are woven into my work.



On Her Favorite Medium:


I would say a mixed media technique I developed that uses ink and gouache is my favorite. I adore the texture of traditional mediums, but the opportunities in Photoshop are also really exciting — and I plan to explore it even more.



On What’s Next:


Though I am very interested in illustrating other writers’ stories, I love writing and I am creating my own stories. I am in the process of finishing a humorous non-fiction manuscript that I’m excited about.



All artwork used by permission of Kerry Dwyer.

* * *

Note for any new readers: 7-Imp’s 7 Kicks is a weekly meeting ground for taking some time to reflect on Seven(ish) Exceptionally Fabulous, Beautiful, Interesting, Hilarious, or Otherwise Positive Noteworthy Things from the past week, whether book-related or not, that happened to you. New kickers are always welcome.

* * * Jules’ Kicks * * *

1) Making progress on a big project (not related to books at all).

2) My daughters are really excited about the upcoming Christmas break, which means of course more time for us to read.

3) I’m making progress on a piano piece.

4) This update on the refugee family of a recent iconic photo.

5) The Wolf Wilder by Katherine Rundell.

6) Good Christmas music.

7) Hearing from a former “up-and-coming illustrator,” feautred here previously, who now has a book and agent offer.

What are YOUR kicks this week?

8 comments to “7-Imp’s 7 Kicks #460: Featuring
Up-and-Coming Illustrator, Kerry Dwyer”

  1. Good morning, Imps! Happy December!

    Hello Kerry. Cheers for good books and good stories.

    Jules: Hurrah for progress! 🙂

    My kicks for the past week:
    1. Originality
    2. Cohesion
    3. Musicality
    4. New music
    5. Rationality
    6. Pushing through
    7. Continued

  2. Thank you for sharing Kerry Dwyer’s work. I loved and agree with her belief in “the intimacy of a physical book”.
    Jules, who’s your go to for good Christmas music? Looking foward to the break as well.
    My kicks:
    1. A day of music and theater.
    2. Seeing a friend’s son grow in his love of acting. His first spoken part last night.
    3. Dinner with friends.
    4. My once a year gathering with a former librarian.
    5. Creating gifts.
    6. Oldest grandgirl.
    7. The people I work with everyday.
    Have a great week.

  3. We passed each other LW. Here’s to originality and musicality.

  4. Hello everyone, I love reading your kicks! Congratulations on progress Jules! Love #6 from little willow – “pushing through.” Best wishes to your up and coming illustrator Kerry – seems like she already has so much experience – will be fun to see her progress. I missed last week because of an eight day Internet outage, so my first kick is obvious:
    1. electricity and Internet
    2. Belatedly, all the thankfuls around the Thx table including the five year old who said she was “thankful for now, for here.”
    3. blustery but benign weather after huge storm
    4. reading in the NYT that children who grow up with libraries, book shelves (defined as more than 100 books) do better. Such a duh, but was fun to read. Was couched in a worry about everything being digital and not browsable (like we all did with libraries). Both music and books.
    5. gearing up for Christmas bit by red and giittery bit
    6. another birthday gone by, which made me realize how right my mom was when she used to say “I don’t seem this old to myself”
    7. gratitude for these moments of rethinking the week
    Hugs to you all who seem like friends, kindred spirits,

  5. Thanks for sharing your bright, fun illustrations Kerry! I am particularly enamored with the octopus in glasses and top hat!

    Jules – hooray for making progress on a project. And thanks as always for the book recommendations – I am planning on giving The Wolf Wilder as a Christmas present to several kids on my Christmas list – including me. How wonderful that the formerly featured artist has an agent and offer – so very cool that you are able to help others get their work seen and appreciated – recognizing talent is a skill that not all have, but you most certainly do. Cheers to that!

    LW – I love Pushing Through and Continued best!

    Jone – what a lovely week – what play was your friend’s son in? Dinner with friends and once a year reunions are so delightful.

    Hi Katy – glad you have electricity and internet again – that 5 year old’s thankful is so wonderful – what an old soul. I agree with your mother about birthdays. Have fun gearing up for Christmas!

    My kicks this week:
    1) Doing 30 Days of Yoga – today is Day 7. So far so good.
    2) Going to bed early & getting to read more of Anne of The Island.
    3) Work conference this weekend – great stuff plus reconnecting with good people.
    4) Wonderful friend and dogsitter so Daisy had company and care while I was at the conference.
    5) Long phone call with a good friend sharing joys and sorrows and future hopes and dreams.
    6) Ice cream for dinner.
    7) Being able to give book recommendations to the mother of a daughter who is a reluctant reader – the Golden Compass was top of my list.
    7.5) The Timbers are in the MLS Cup today! Go Timbers!

    Have a wonderful merry week Imps!

  6. LW: You’re an original work of art yourself.

    Jone: Kick #4 sounds fun, and boy howdy do I miss seeing live theatre as often as I used to (before kids)!

    Kat: Your five-year-old is smart and super wise. And “I don’t seem this old to myself” resonates with me too. It was a long time before I realized I wasn’t 25 anymore.

    Rachel, I love your fourth kick. I hope she enjoys Pullman’s book. Continued luck with the yoga!

    Have a good week, all!

  7. kickin it!

    1) We had a successful Book Fair at school this week.
    2) Tried two new restaurants (Adele’s and Hattie B’s)
    3) Celebrated a friend’s birthday and got to see teachers from my old school.
    4) My obsession with Hamilton the Musical got turned up to 11 this week.
    5) This adorable video (featuring Daveed Diggs of Hamilton) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pnz_YZioMK8
    6) Did all my Christmas shopping yesterday
    7) Started teaching the 1st & 2nd grade class at church

  8. Angela, a generous friend sent me that Hamilton soundtrack. Good stuff.

    So glad to hear the book fair went well. Still wish I could have volunteered.

    Have a sunny week!

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