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Encouraging Growth of Creation with Soil and Water: 2024 KPL Picture Book Sprouting Courses Open Registration for New Students

【Reported from Kaohsiung】 The Kaohsiung Public Library's "Picture Book Sprouting Courses" officially opened registrations for new students starting January 17, 2024. KPL's "Picture Book Sprouting Courses" was widely honored as the most substantial picture book creation course in Taiwan, and it is a series of comprehensive courses to cultivate new talents in picture book creation. The courses are based on integration with related industries, taking students on an in-depth exploration of each phase in the picture book creation process. The year 2024 oversees the courses, inviting two illustrious figures as the guidance instructors and designers of the courses' curriculum. These figures are Jhou Jian-Sin, illustrator of the book Child of Formosa and various other award-winning picture books, and Jhou Yan-Tong, an experienced professional editor currently working as a chief editor at Linking Publishing. Together, they will each offer their wisdom from the perspectives of "creation" and "editing," allowing students to think and observe the different aspects that must be considered in producing a picture book.

According to KPL's Acting Director Lin Yi-Cheng, the "Picture Books Sprouting Courses," which were first established in 2019, was founded on the International Picture Book Center's collection of 160 thousand picture books and its dedication to promoting picture book cultures as a project to support talents in the world of picture book creation. KPL holds the courses annually, while calls for participants for the Picture Book Sprouting Awards are announced biannually. The classes have been held four times and inspired nearly 120 creators interested in storytelling and illustration. Moreover, the courses allow picture book lovers to meet at the library, allowing KPL to become a platform for knowledge exchange.

This year is the first time a professional editor will be invited to assume the role of a guidance instructor. Through this project, KPL hopes to support the many local original picture books in Taiwan and further strengthen its picture book ecology. Furthermore, KPL also seeks to explore the strength of picture books when injected into the soft power of Taiwan's culture and economy.

The 2024 "Picture Book Sprouting Courses" sports a brilliant team of instructors and substantive content. The courses will start with a beginner's class on picture book analysis and gradually expand into lessons on story-building, illustration techniques, creative style, storyboarding, and narrative perspectives, all of which are elements that require a creator's careful consideration. Furthermore, the courses will also delve into professional knowledge, including the discussion process with editors at the end stages of publication and perspectives on copyright law.

Eight picture book authors with different characteristics and styles in their work will also be invited to speak in the classes, each of whom is equipped with rich experience in the field of picture book industry and picture book design. These authors are Ballboss, Huang Yi-Wen, Lin Sing-Ciou, Lin Lian-En, Chu Yu-Ling, Chu Jia-Huei, Wu Ruei-Jhe, and Wu Sin-Jhih. Professor Yao Sin-An, an expert in copyright law, will also be invited as a speaker. As a picture book author is bound to encounter various issues during their career, the courses will allow students to explore the fascinating aspects of picture books from different fields of specialties.

Syu Peng-Syong, a student of last year's "Picture Book Sprouting Courses," shared his experience during the course. Before joining the courses, he had thought of many stories and drawn a few illustrations. Yet, he lacked the confidence to create a picture book, which motivated him to participate in the courses. He had hoped to seek advice and information from the instructions from a complete set of courses that would allow the pieces of his story ideas and illustrations to become a more comprehensive work. Attending the courses strengthened his belief in his choice to pursue the path, and he eventually went abroad to participate in other related courses.

Tang Nan-shou, one of the instructors from last year's courses, also shared his insight, saying, "Creators are a part of the picture book ecology. From creators, publishers, and channels to the readers… you need to build each of these parts to make a complete ecological system.

I'm looking forward to continuing the 'Picture Book Sprouting Courses,' or we can think of more possibilities to expand the courses and activities.


The courses have been held four times over the past few years, owing to their continuation of excellent results and increased interest among the population. With past experiences and knowledge at its back, KPL eagerly opens the fifth 60-hour Picture Book Sprouting Courses, which maintains the previous curriculum system of two guidance instructors and additional speakers between classes. They will accompany the students throughout their creative process and discuss their work. This system allows the students to master the essential elements of picture book creation effectively. Registration for students of the courses was open from January 10 to 17, during which students could sign up for the courses online. Following the registration, the two guidance instructors performed an evaluation and selected 30 students. The courses will be held on the weekends during the period extending from March 2 to May 25. For more course information, please visit the KPL official website ( KPL hopes to use the library's rich collection and course resources to reach out to creators all over Taiwan. It welcomes creators interested in the language of illustrations or story writing to send their collection of works and sign up for the activity.

The 4th Floor of the Kaohsiung Main Public Library is hosting an exhibition titled "A Pen and A Picture, Encourage the Growth of Stories in the City." The exhibition displays all the picture books created by the "Picture Book Sprouting Courses" students in 2023. KPL welcomes all citizens to greet the early spring by visiting the Kaohsiung Public Library and engaging with the original stories of Taiwan, during which they may delve into the joyous world of picture books through reading. 



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Updated2024-03-20 AM 11:09:34