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Meredith Primary School

Meredith Primary School Literary Day
Sponsored by the Meredith & District News
On Thursday September 3rd. celebrated Australian children’s author Craig Smith visited Meredith Primary School. During his stay shared he examples of work from his 40 year literary career along with various illustrative tips and techniques for our budding MPS authors.

Special thanks to the Meredith and District News for sponsoring this day. It was fantastic to receive such wonderful support from this group. Our children are grateful to have participated in such an inspiring and enjoyable literary experience.

Craig Smith has illustrated over 370 picture books, junior novels and educational readers.  He grew up in South Australia and studied graphic design at the SA School of Art, graduating in 1976. He has been a freelance illustrator in Australia ever since.  He currently lives in Melbourne. He has four grown-up children and four little grandchildren.

Craig’s presentation to the students of Meredith Primary was about books and pictures, the role of the author, and editor and illustrator of course. But it is was especially about making things up by DRAWING! At Meredith each child was placed into one of four groups which Craig rotated through the day.

Our children thoroughly enjoyed the day, here’s what they thought:

Prep/1s: He does good pictures and he tells really good stories 

1/2s: He’s the best drawer in the world! We liked that he did a rough copy first like we have to do.

2/3s: He’s a good drawer and he taught us how to draw properly. He taught us how to draw ‘Billy the Punk’. 

4/5s:  He was a great drawer and teacher because he taught us that at the start it does not have to be a great drawing as long as you can fix it up, it will be fine. He showed us a funny story about killing a red back spider with a tank and he read the book using very funny voices. 

6s: That he was funny the way he sketched the drawings. We liked how it could look a bit messy, but then you could see what it was meant to be because of the darker lines. His drawings were awesome! 


By two grade six girls
Interview with Craig Smith by the MPS School Captains

Q.1: What was your favourite book to illustrate?

A: The ‘I Hate Fridays’ series because the drawings are black and white

Q.2: How long have you’ve been illustrating books for?

A: Since I was 19 years old, just on 40 years now.

Q.3: Do you work directly with authors?

A: No, I work through the editor and if he or she has any concerns they will tell the editor and the editor will then tell me, and vice versa. The editor is a very important part of the process.

Q.4: What made you want to illustrate?

A: It was a way for me to express my sense of humour. And it was fun for me to work out how to make a living out of using my sense of humour.

Q.5: Who were your role models?

A: Karl Friedrich Waechtar, Heinz Edelmann and Etienne Delessart. In Australia, I admired Shaun Tan, Ron Brooks, Leigh Hobbs, Terry Dentonand and Ann James