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My Job in 5: Annie Simpson

Make Believe Ideas' own Annie Simpson takes the helm of My Job in 5 this week to paint a picture of what it's like to be Art Director for Make Believe Ideas.
Written on 02/06/2019 - 16:21

1.    Describe your role.
Together with our senior creative team, I am involved in the creation and generation of ideas for new Make Believe Ideas titles. Working for a children’s book publisher means that I can be developing novelty board books, picture books, activity books and tween titles all at the same time.  I design the jackets and sample spreads and then work closely with the design and editorial teams as they see the book through to completion.

2.    What do you like best about your role?
I love working in such a creative environment and the collaboration with designers, editors and illustrators. Every day is different because every project is different. When you’ve worked on a book for so long on screen, it is so exciting when the printed book arrives on your desk. It is an absolute joy to create and produce books that children love.

3.    Which new projects or titles are you working on at the moment?
We are just producing our list for Autumn 2019. Our turnaround time from initial design through to completion is so quick and it means that I am designing many projects at once. I am currently working on the design and development of some new, innovative novelty board books.

4.    What skills do you need for your role?
A love of good design and typography. Being able to communicate your ideas and vision for each book to all teams – Sales, Design, Editorial and Production. Be enthusiastic, approachable and above all good humoured. Offer constructive feedback to bring out the best in everybody else. Don’t just focus on the ‘pictures’. Engage with the book as a whole and love the words too!

5.    What advice would you give to those looking to work in the industry?
Love reading. Love books. Love learning. Be passionate, interested and curious and find inspiration all around you. Focus on what you want and treat every experience as a stepping stone to your goal. Be willing to be flexible, but above all, genuinely love what you do.