Julie Kraulis: artist, author, illustrator

Monday, June 22, 2015 11:13 AM | Lena Coakley

Recording Secretary: annelaurelcarter.com

Our new president Sharon Jennings chaired the meeting. At our creative May meeting, over fifty members attended the field trip to hear Susin Nielsen and Susan Juby at the North York Library,which made it a great success, not only for the library but for the authors and the bookstore selling their books.



Details for the CANSCAIP Writing for Children Competition have been announced. This year there will be two winners of $1,000 each:

  • picture book/early reader 
  • chapter book/middle grade/young adult  

See the CANSCAIP website for more information.


Helena Aalto, CANSCAIP's Administrative Director, announced that details will soon be on website for CANSCAIP's Packaging Your Imagination conference in November. This year, One-to-One manuscript and portfolio critiques will be available on the same day. And we'll also have something new--website/social critiques. We will again have Art Show in November where pieces can be sold. 

The conference will be held on Saturday, November 14th so SAVE THE DATE!

TD Book Week Call for Applications

Want to be a book week touring author, illustrator or storyteller? Information is on the CCBC website. Deadline is June 30th.

Call for Applications

Toronto Public Library’s Young Voices has a call for an e-writer in residence with a June 26th deadline. Remuneration is $10,000.00.


Anne Laurel Carter will be leading a YA Novel writing course this summer,  July 13-17, at the University of Toronto, School of Continuing Studies (details at: learn.utoronto.ca)

TWUC Survey

Sharon Jennings announced TWUC's disappointing results from their recent national survey: we are earning 27% less from our creative work than we were in 1998. 

TWUC considers this an emergency. Sylvia McNicoll encouraged us to attend TWUC’s annual meeting next year and join the discussion table.


Catherine Rondina recently published a piece, A Famous Egg, in the anthology on food “Dear Tomato”, edited by Carol-Ann Hoyte, and published by  CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform.


Nominations and award winners will be announced at our September 2015 meeting.


Patricia Storms introduced the speaker, Julie Kraulis, an artist, author and illustrator.

Since completing her Bachelor of Design in Illustration at OCAD, Julie spends most of her days in her studio with a pencil or paintbrush in hand, working on a wide range of projects from fine art to illustration to picture books. 

Her dream (since high school) came true when Tundra Books published her first two books, Whimsy's Heavy Things and An Armadillo in Paris.

Julie has worked as a freelance artist full-time for 5 and 1/2 years and finds it a demanding beast, but one worth the challenge. Work ebbs and flows and  no day is like the last. 

She incorporates moving  - a walk or run - into her days because it helps her sift and unravel things in her mind. Her work includes fine art, illustration, house & people’s portraits, logos & corporate work. 

Music, books, conversations, podcasts and Instagram inspire her. 

There are Meccas of inspiring ideas around the world and Instagram is an excellent place on the web to find them. In particular, she’s inspired by French artists. 

In terms of her technique, Julie loves working on a soft wood panel, usually pine. She covers it with gesso, then paints thin layers of oil paint, and works with a graphite pencil. 

She uses varying degrees of sandpaper to create varying degrees of texture. 

When she was 28 years old,  Julie signed her first contract as an author-illustrator with Tundra for Whimsey’s Heavy Things which has a slightly autobiographical theme - how to cast off the heavy things that weigh you down.

An Armadillo in Paris (also  Tundra) concerns Arlo who is humble, covered in armour, and hates the cold ( a little like Julie).

It’s the first book in a series about Arlo who explores cities, looking for a monument. 

How did Julie get her lucky break? She was introduced to a freelance designer who works for Tundra and to whom she showed her portfolio. The designer’s important advice:

 Fill your portfolio with work that exemplifies the work you want to do. 

Julie pitched her stories to this freelance designer and Tundra called her in for a meeting. Her third book Arlo in New York will be out next year.

From the time she signs a contract to seeing the book on a shelf takes 2 years. The art itself takes 2-3 months of full-time work. 

In terms of process, words and images happen simultaneously for her. She does small thumbnails to figure out where the text will go and the graphic design of the book.

 Then she goes to black and white linears, to size. Then she moves it to final art work which is the real joy. 

Our next Toronto CANSCAIP meeting will be held on September 9th.