DEBUT TALENT Z. B. ASTERPLUME ILLUSTRATOR HIGHLIGHT
Z.B. Asterplume began herillustration career as a scenic artist for the Denver Center Theater Company. With her scene painting days behind her, Z.B. has adjusted her artistic process to be much less messy, and smaller in scale. Yet, you’ll see that theatrical bent in her design and tone – those origins of drama – in her endearing children’s book illustrations. In 2018, she was awarded a mentorship through SCBWI’s Rocky Mountain chapter to work with the 2019 Cook Prize Award winner, rising star Dow Phumiruk, a fellow East/West client.
Born in the heart of the Montana wilderness, and raised just beyond the shadows of Colorado’s glorious peaks, Z.B. sees artistic expression all around her. She often finds herself capturing images on napkins, receipts, even greeting card envelopes if her sketchbook isn’t nearby. Fun fact: Z.B.’smother encouraged her artistic talent from the start and evenallowed her to draw on the walls of her bedroom! Another fun fact: yes, Z.B. Asterplume is a nom de plume. Zilla Brownsly Asterplume, in case you were wondering.
Z.B.’s favorite version of any drawing is always that first quick sketch done in the moment, but that’s just the beginning of her process. After photographing the sketch with her iPad, Z.B. works digitally, experimenting with texture, a tight color palette, and sparse but evocative text. Her overall goal for each child-friendly illustration is to retain an analogue feel.
After six years teaching special needs students, Z.B. now works for a software company. However, she continues to volunteer in the special needs’ community, and her refrigerator is covered with illustrations by her adult students. She lives in Westminster, Colorado.