1 / 3

Illustration help for book projects on the île d'Oléron, off the coast of France

  • Favourited 290 times
  • Last activity: 21 Jan 2024



 Min stay requested: No minimum



  • Description


    Hello Workawayer ! Thanks for visiting my profile (-:

    Although I am not always free to host, as indicated by my sometimes red-period-yellow-period-marked calendar, please do contact me if my publishing projects are of interest to you; I would enjoy hearing from you at any time. Especially, I would never want to miss an opportunity to host an illustrator whose drawing style(s) per her or his portfolio/book/Instagram samples seems to be a great fit for the projects I'm working on – so even if my calendar is marked red for the time-frame that interests you, please contact me. You never know: we might be able to work something out. At the very least, contact in the short term may plant the seed for a future collaboration.

    Also, please note: although it may take me some 3 to 4 days to get around to it, I do respond to every request. Sorry for the delay... I'll manage it sooner if my work schedule permits.

    So, here goes...

    ME : Originally from southern California, I've been living in France since 1994. I am a writer, a publisher, a guitar-playing singer-songwriter, and a person who loves to make and create things.

    THE PROJECT : ILLUSTRATIONS and/or COVER ARTWORK for book projects to be published first in English, French, and also Spanish, and eventually Italian and German.

    I always have several projects on my desk. Currently, half a dozen manuscripts for illustrated children's books, and an already published cookbook that wants to be adapted in a different form for a specific audience. Also, a targeted political-statement illustration (in classic 'travel poster' style) that I would like to produce; this approach might lead to a series.

    YOU : A confirmed illustrator who loves to do good work and who commits to seeing a project through to the end because that's how you like to work.

    When you contact me initially, please if possible include a link to your online portfolio or Instagram account. Thanks!

    HOW: If any of this sounds appealing to you, please contact me, and I will be happy to provide you with further information about how I go about publishing and selling books, and how your contribution would fit into the larger picture.

    WHERE : On the île d'Oléron, just off the western coast of France. Here you will enjoy a home that I designed and in many respects built myself, with lots of light and space, a somewhat wild garden, and a beach that is just around the corner.

  • Types of help and learning opportunities

    Types of help and learning opportunities

    Art Projects
  • Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    I am ever keen to meet people. I like to ask questions, find out how other people think & see the world, and learn about how they are living their lives today. So I look forward to some rambling one-on-one conversations with you while you're here.

    If you are interested in things like house design and house building, publishing and writing, philosophy, art history, aviation, meditation and spiritual pursuits, I can share with you some of my experience in these areas. I can also teach you how to make home-made bread and chapatis.

  • Help


    I provide accommodation, meals, bedding and towels, fibre-based wifi connection to internet and a home-away-from-home for workawayers.

    Workawayers are free to organise their work time / days as they like. As a general guide, 3 to 4 hours per day, 5 days per week. I am not myself a late-riser, but people who are late-risers are welcome (I loathe alarm clocks).

    I am however a NON-SMOKER and I have an aversion to smoking. Are you a smoker ? Hey, listen, I quite understand – I have a chocolate habit of sorts – but in all honesty, I think it's better if we part ways here. I trust you'll understand. Besides, there are plenty of other Workaway opportunities to pursue in France. I wish you the best. (The same goes for anyone who uses drugs. Just not my cup of tea. Merci y gracias.)

    More information about ILLUSTRATION:

    I am looking for illustrators whose digitally-produced illustrations share a style with pen & ink & watercolour/inkwash drawing / printmaking / serigraphy / gouache / woodblock (style depending on the project), and who want to fully implicate themselves in a book project or poster project.

    Your coming to Oléron gives us a chance to meet, to work out the details of your implication in a given project, to define the approach, the style, the number of drawings in a book project, et cetera.

    Ideally, the compatibility of our ideas, your enthusiasm for the project, and your self-assurance and know-how gained from past experience, will all combine to mean that you can envision doing most or all of the artwork during your stay on Oléron.

    For each project, I start with an idea as to a type of illustration that I think I want; but my hope is always to work with someone who can actively contribute ideas. We collaborate in finding the style and approach that works best for the material.

    The goal is this: to produce a book which YOU, the illustrating artist, can feel justifiably proud of... and to produce a book which I, the author and editor, can feel deserves to be well received by the public.

    >>>>>> iPad:

    The artist who illustrated the above-mentioned cookbook first sketched out her ideas using paper and pencil; she then switched to an iPad to create all of her finished drawings. The experience convinced me that when it come to illustrations that need to be in digital format for publication, the iPad approach is a huge time saver all around.

    For this reason, it is a huge plus if you have your own iPad or equivalent, and are comfortable using it.


    Not all artist-illustrator / author-publisher collaborations work well. It can be hit-or-miss. It may be that when we actually meet in person, we discover that our ideas or approaches are not as compatible as we'd hoped. We both want to enjoy our Workaway experience and the project; so we do best to be honest with ourselves and each other.
    If we both feel it is working, that we are on the same 'wave-length', then that's great, we're both happy!
    If however it is not working for either you or me, for whatever cause, then that alone is reason enough to cut things short. No hard feelings. We respect each other and we turn the page.

    In my experience, in terms of finding out whether we share a common outlook and goals and whether we want to work together, we'll likely know where we're at after just a few days. That's a good time to take stock and decide whether our collaboration suits us both.

  • Languages

    Languages spoken
    English: Fluent
    French: Fluent
    Spanish: Beginner

    This host offers a language exchange
    I am reading in Spanish, but I'm nowhere near being able to speak it. ¿Hablas español ? ¡Quiero aprenderlo! If you yourself are looking for a Workaway experience where you will be able to practice and improve your French, PLEASE TAKE NOTE : I am fairly fluent in French, but I am NOT a native speaker of the language. I generally speak English at home, and I am personally looking to learn Spanish. So if you are hoping to have an immersive, French-speaking experience, please be aware that my Workaway proposal is not be a good fit. That said, you can practice your French with the natives in your free time, and I can share with you my tips for dealing with conjugation and grammar (-:

  • Accommodation


    You will have a separate bedroom on the upstairs floor, with access to a bathroom that is shared if there is another workawayer present (I nearly always only host only one person at a time, but there are occasional overlaps), or if one of my 4 children (ages 20, 23, 25, 27) happens to be staying here for a short spell (although that's now rare). My own sleeping quarters and separate bathroom are downstairs, and I will not intrude upon your upstairs space.

    When it comes to food, I observe a more or less vegan diet, and most of what I buy is organic/bio. I bake my own bread and chapatis, and content myself with simple fare. I look forward to learning new recipes from you, and in having fun when it comes to cooking meals. (I hope it goes without saying that wherever we live, we all need to contribute some of our own time to keeping the house tidy. I appreciate workawayers who take the initiative to sweep now and then, to help with watering the vegetable garden in summer, to help with meal ideas, et cetera...)

    You will have access to wifi/internet (high-speed fibre connection).

    Please note: there is no television. But the house does have plenty of books and comic books in both French and English, and a few in Spanish.

    There is a piano that you're welcome to use. Also a guitar, a cajón, bongo drums, and other small percussion instruments.

  • What else ...

    What else ...

    You will find that the island is a place where you can savour your own rhythm. The nearest beach is just 5 minutes away by foot. I can provide you with a not-very-new bicycle for getting around... there are other great beaches to discover, there is a lighthouse you can visit (climb 224 steps and you'll have a great view from the top), numerous surf spots (we can loan you a surfboard or a body-board), and lots of nature and birds to see.

    During much of the year, there is boat service from Oléron to Aix island (Napoleon spent his last night on French soil there) and nearby La Rochelle – both make great destinations for a day-trip, or even a weekend getaway.

  • A little more information

    A little more information

    • Internet access

    • Limited internet access

      Limited internet access

    • We have pets

    • We are smokers

    • Can host families

  • How many Workawayers can stay?

    How many Workawayers can stay?


  • ...

    Hours expected

    Project oriented - As a general guide, 3 to 4 hours per day, 5 days per week

Host ref number: 984212245978

Feedback (6)



These are extra optional ratings when members leave feedback. The average rating left for each option is displayed.

Accuracy of profile: (5.0)

Cultural exchange: (5.0)

Communication: (5.0)

Come and practise your French in Burgundy, France
Join our family on our small farmstead, experience the Provence lifestyle and lots more, in Simiane la Rotonde, France