Friday, January 22nd, 2021 from 6:00-7:15 pm via Zoom

Authors and Illustrators Night gives Lowell students the opportunity to attend workshops with successful authors and illustrators in order to learn more about the process of writing and illustrating books. This year our event will be virtual.  Student workshop kits will be distributed approximately one week prior to the event and will contain all the art and writing supplies you need to learn from our incredible authors and illustrators. The hour-long workshops are tailored to students in each grade level and are limited in size so students get to interact and learn from our guests.


****The first 15 students to sign-up for each workshop will receive a FREE BOOK with their materials for their workshop! Keep an eye out on the Lowell weekly blasts for a link to register. As always, we will work to place you in your first choice as space permits. 


We have another great line-up this year of writers and illustrators eager to inspire our Lowell Seastars with their creative, hands-on workshops. Registration starts Friday, December 18th.



Benson Shum is a children’s books author and illustrator. His books include Alex’s Good Fortune, Go To Sheep, Holly’s Day At The Pool. His most recent book is Sloth Went, which won the National Parenting Product Award. He is also an animator at Walt Disney Animation Studios where he worked on such films as Frozen, Big Hero 6, Moana, Frozen 2, Raya and the Last Dragon, and the upcoming Encanto. Originally from Vancouver BC, Benson now lives in sunny southern California.  His most recent book, Sloth Went, is a story about facing your fears, gaining independence and learning to do what you have to do.

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LeUyen Pham is a children’s book illustrator and author. She has illustrated and written more than 80 books and in 2020 she won a Caldecott Honor Award for her illustrations in the book Bear Came Along Life. Prior to turning to children’s books, she worked in animation at Dreamworks. She is the illustrator of the popular Princess in Black children’s book series and is also the illustrator behind the graphic novels Real Friends and Best Friends. Her most recent book, Outside, Inside, is a moving picture book celebrating the community coming together to face the challenges of the global pandemic.  

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WORKSHOP #3 – GRADES 1-3 WRITING with Aneta Cruz


Aneta Cruz was born and raised in the Czech Republic and now calls southern California home. She earned a BA in English Literature and an MFA in Creative Writing. By day she teaches pre-K and by night she imagineers stories that make hearts pound and minds ponder. Her most recent book, Juan Has The Jitters, is a story about the power of kindness and inclusion to help a child feel a sense of belonging with his class and celebrates diversity and what makes each of us unique and special.

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James Dean is the original creator and illustrator of Pete The Cat. He is a self-taught artist originally from Fort Payne, Alabama. His passion for drawing became apparent at a young age and as a child, he loved to draw his favorite characters like Snoopy and Yogi Bear. He earned his degree in electrical engineering from Auburn University and the little blue cat showed up as a character in James’s artwork around 1999 and has been a permanent fixture ever since. His first book, The Misadventures Of Pete The Cat was published in 2006 and there are now almost 100 published Pete The Cat titles. His most recent title, Pete the Cat Falling For Autumn, was released in September 2020.

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WORKSHOP #5 – GRADES 4-5 WRITING with Adam Epstein


Adam Epstein studied film at Wesleyan University and circled the world on a ship during college. He is the author of the middle-grade fantasy series Snared. He is the co-author of the international best-selling middle grade fantasy series The Familiars and the middle grade sci-fi series Starbounders. He has written film and television projects for Disney, Sony, Fox, MGM, Hulu,Paramount, and the Disney Channel among others. His most recent book, Snared: Voyage On The Eversteel Sea, follows Wily Snare as he attempts to retain his throne, stop his enemies, and face piracy and sea monster attacks along the way.

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WORKSHOP #6 - GRADES 4-5 ILLUSTRATION with Richard Fairgray


Richard Fairgray is a creator of comic and picture books and has more than 250 published titles to his name. He wrote his first comic book when he was seven, and had it photocopied at his school library. He went on to write and illustrate Blastosaurus, which was the number one selling comic book in New Zealand for five years. His most recent title, Black Sand Beach, Are You Afraid Of The Light?, follows a twelve-year old and his best friend who discover their summer vacation home is haunted and adventure ensues.  

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