Hello my name is Stephen Stone, most people call me Steve. I was born in the North East of England where we are known affectionately as Sandancers.
I now live and work in Derbyshire with my soulmate Claire and studio assistant Vincent Van Mog. ( A slightly aloof orange cat) He’s a master of colour!
My creative career began after I completed a degree in Fashion Design, working as a designer for children’s and corporate wear companies. After a while I took another direction and became a university lecturer for 12 years, teaching fashion design and visual communication to post and undergraduate students. During this time I completed a Masters in Visual Communication, specialising in Children’s Book Illustration.
Creating memorable character design is at the heart of my work with a passion to capture the essence of an authors words. I embrace all kinds of subject matter, it may be an emotive story that requires a sensitive approach or full of humour, in which my characters take on an animated look - adding an extra dimension to a story.
Colour is also passion and my design experience allows me to balance many different palettes in my work. I also illustrate in black and white and have recently worked on 2 YA Fiction Books, the second being published at the end of 2020, for innovative independent Irish publisher Little Island Books.
Having worked with many mainstream publishers, editors, art buyers and book designers, I thrive in a collaborative situation. Branching out into the independent publishing market has been an important step for me to take as an Illustrator - seeing it as a progression, a journey into a changing world that sees individuals working more closely together. There is a strong desire to connect on a personal level, to offer and share my professional and honed skills in art direction.
Formats provided are:
PDF Press Ready CMYK 300dpi- Suitable for POD sites such as KDP and Ingram Spark
PDF Digital RGB High Quality Copy
Please note: I DO NOT provide EPUB/Kindle Formatting.
A great picture book tells half of its story through illustrations. When working on my children's book, The Poopicorn, I looked through hundreds of illustrators' portfolios looking for an artist that could tell my story with emotive, humorous characters AND could also capture the beautiful landscape setting. Most illustrators cannot do both, but Steve Stone can! He made my characters come to life within landscapes that are so beautiful I want to frame them. Additionally, Steve is a wonderful human being who collaborates well and is really fun to work with. He listened and understood my vision for The Poopicorn. He even came up with side characters that I had not written into my story, but they made the book better! After my book was published, I continued to come up with marketing ideas. Steve enthusiastically supported my efforts and graciously handled my requests for illustrations in various formats. I cannot wait to work with him on my next book!
Hilary Whiton - (Indie Author)
''Steve is an extremely talented illustrator that offers valuable creative input every step of the way. This was my first children’s book, and the process was incredibly smooth from start to finish. If you’re looking for a quirky illustration style and for someone who’s reliable and professional, look no further.''
Gavin Stradi - Creative Director Tonic International
''Steve is a superb illustrator and far exceeded my expectations. I really enjoyed working with him. He not only designed and created amazing pieces of illustrative art, but made extremely helpful suggestions to guide some of the details of my project. Overall a great collaborator and a consummate professional. I highly recommend Steve.''
Robert Steinmetz (Indie Author)
''I hired Steve to illustrate a playful non-fiction picture book for Charlesbridge called Bugs Don’t Hug: Six-Legged Parents and Their Kids, due out on September 18th, 2018. I was drawn to his use of color and texture, and the liveliness of his characters. Throughout the process of working on the book Steve’s attention to detail was highly evident. He followed our art direction to a “T”, happily making many minor tweaks that helped us ensure the visual accuracy of the insects throughout the book. Bugs Don’t Hug wouldn’t be the same without the richness and pizzaz Steve’s artwork has brought to the project. I’d be thrilled to work with him again on more books (and I hope we do!)''
Sarah Richards Taylor (Art Director) Charlesbridge Publishing
''Steve has illustrated several books for me. He's always delivered his work on time or early. His illustrations are absolutely wonderful - with characters that overflow with personality and humor. He's a pleasure to work with. ''
Dianne Cassidy (Senior Art Buyer - Dinardo Design)
''I was fortunate enough to work with Steve on a project for Pearson’s Bug Club reading program. Steve illustrated our Young Robin Hood series, consisting of three books. His illustrations were both action packed and filled with humour. I always looked forward to his work coming in. Steve hit deadlines even when schedules were tight, with artwork supplied and laid out just as instructed. I quickly became comfortable leaving elements of the brief open ended, safe in the knowledge he would bring the scene to life. I would be more than happy to work with Steve again in the future. ''
Gregory Jackson - (Pearson Education)