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If you want me to visit your school please contact me at I mainly work with  years 1 through 8 and provide an educational and engaging presentation ( with lots of unflattering caricatures of teachers). I talk about my job as an illustrator ( It's a job I can do in my pyjamas ) I discuss illustration styles and methods. These visits are reasonably priced and if a number of schools in your area can collaborate this will bring travel costs down...I have visited over 150 schools throughout New Zealand and overseas....each session of around an hour can be to an audience of one class, or a whole assembly. For each session I will illustrate around 10-15 original, fast-draw images that the class can keep. If I am booked for a whole day I can also take an illustrating workshop of approximately 20 students for 2 hours...I adapt my style and content to suit the age group I am talking to.


Please see below for glowing testimonials that I managed to get without paying much at all! I can be contracted directly or through the New Zealand Book Council if you are a member.

Ross Kinnaird joined the New Zealand Book Council's Writers in Schools programme in 2004 and is one of our most popular illustrators with schools across the country. His high energy, humorous presentations are designed to suit the needs of different age groups and abilities, and students get hands on examples of his work to show the illustrating process through to publication. The schools rave about his ability to draw anything on the spot – including caricatures of attending teachers (much to the delight of students).

Emma Gallagher
New Zealand Book Council


‘Ross was inspiring, informative and funny. An excellent contributor to our Book Week celebration. High impact.’ Cornwall Park School, Auckland, 2009.


‘A very fun-loving presentation – was humourous, entertaining and educational, and promoted both drawing and reading.’

Greenhithe Primary, Auckland, 2009

I have visited 16 schools in Japan over three trips. Here is a comment by the wonderful Wouter.

"Ross Kinnaird was a true joy to have at the American School in Japan.  The kids loved Ross's live drawing sessions, helping him come up with crazy ideas for imaginary animals and delighting in his funny cartoons of their teachers.  It was good to see a number of usually more disengaged boys and girls getting very involved and excited.   Over the course of his four day residency at our elementary school, Ross worked closely with the art teacher who had the third grade students come up with questions inspired by Ross's book "Why do dogs sniff bottoms?"  Ross illustrated their best ideas, generously providing our school with finished colored illustrations answering questions such as "Why do boomerangs come back?"  and "Why do people hate mosquitos?"   Seeing Ross at work while explaining his water coloring process helped the kids come up with a better product of their own.  Ross is an energetic visitor and very generous with his time and energy.  As a librarian who organizes about 4 author/illustrator/storyteller visits yearly, I rate Ross very highly among the presenters I have seen at work and highly recommend him for a visit to your school.  I'd be happy to answer any questions you may have about Ross as a visiting illustrator.  feel free to contact me at

Wouter Laleman"

American School in Japan 

Ross Kinnaird ( BA&D ) hons.



What did you hope to get out of this visit, and did the writer help you to achieve this?


Our brief to Ross was to really push the career and technology changes aspect of illustrating in the 21st Century. He did that excellently through explaining the techniques used in his books, drawing, and relating his experiences and own career - all done with humour and fantastic interaction with our students and teachers.


How did this visit link with your current literacy programme?


Ross' visit fits not only into Raroa's literacy programme, but also our Inquiry Learning Programme by challenging students to think about all aspects of book production. He gave valuable insight into how new technology has changed many aspects of his career.


What are the ongoing outcomes of the visit?


Ross challenged some of our better art students who are very critical of their own abilities to "loosen up", enjoy their talent and not be so hard on themselves. In that respect, he was a fantastic role model and inspiration.

Raroa Intermediate   2011

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