Annette Kraus is a freelance illustrator based in Seattle, Washinton, who specializes in illustrating children’s books and creating artwork for kids.

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My interest in children’s books began when I had my first job as a staff illustrator at a newspaper in NY when I was just out of college. I quite liked when I would get an assignment what was geared towards kids or the education beat. Over the years, my expertise in this area has developed due to having kids of my own. Then as they grew into the middle school grades I would pour over the covers and the black & white illustrations in the inside. I have taken several children’s book courses with Make Art That Sells with Lilla Rogers, that has taught me so much about the field of KidLit and most importantly, character development. As an illustrator who specializes in the kid markets, I nurture this focus by observing and drawing everyday. What I love most about kid lit is it's ability to engage, entertain and validate a child’s feeling, experiences or heritage. I believe it's important to understand a child’s energy, physical proportions and point of view. For me, the two most important qualities of a successful kids illustration are believability and unexpected imagination-—kids are very perceptive. I try to sketch and draw lots of kids, animals and funny characters whenever I can. I am a digital illustrator using Procreate on the iPad. I simply love drawing for kids!


  • Seattle Child Magazine
  • PBS
  • SmartGames, Ltd.


What was your favorite storybook as a child? 
Pippi Long Stocking and a book called Wiplala

Which authors do you admire most? 
Judy Blume, Christian Robinson, and Tomie dePaola

What characteristic really brings a children’s book to life?
The ability to capture the uniqueness and special qualities a character may have, no matter how quirky or unusual that may be to the masses. I want a child reader or audience to see my illustrations and know they are seen, that they belong, that they matter.

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