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Meet Roberta Baird

Today we’d like to introduce you to Roberta Baird.

Every artist has a unique story. Can you briefly walk us through yours?
I started my career as a set designer and artist. I worked mostly for local and children’s theaters. I really enjoyed working behind the scenes and getting everything ready for the story that was about to unfold. During the day I painted sets, and in the evening, I read picture books with my kids.

A picture book is just like a small-scale set design. When you turn the page the scene changes, the characters are the actors and I get to bring them to life. I am the set and lighting designer, the costumer and makeup artist. All of this I get to do without leaving my studio, except to refill my coffee.

Please tell us about your art.
When I first started illustrating, I created using traditional mediums. Much of my early work was painted in watercolor or colored pencil. Now I am pretty much all digital. I sketch out an idea, scan it and paint it on my Cintiq using Photoshop. I use digital paint brushes that mimic the look of pastels or watercolors, Revisions are much easier and there is no clean up.

I am a story teller. I strive to take the text of a picture book and bring it to life, to enrich the detail of the words. I want the reader to linger in the illustrations and find something relatable in them. I hope that they see something of themselves in the emotions and resolutions of the characters.

What you should know is that I am passionate about making books that all children, no matter where they come from, or what they look like, will see themselves reflected on the pages of the book.

As an artist, how do you define success and what quality or characteristic do you feel is essential to success as an artist?
That’s a hard one; success means different things to different people. I know in this industry, to be published is always an important goal. Then what?

I think success is creating something that makes your heart soar and makes you forget time while you’re working on it, and when it’s finished, to be able create something else that may or may not be completely different.

Persistence is a quality that is valuable as an artist. Picking up a pencil and working to improve your skills and then getting it out there where it can be seen. Listening to critique and learning from it is a hard but important quality to develop.

How or where can people see your work? How can people support your work?
My work can be found online on my website, blog and social media pages. My books can be ordered on Amazon.

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Roberta Baird

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