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Fall is in the Air: Festivals & Free Printables October 20, 2013 01:46

I love fall time. There's just this cozy feeling that fills the air. For me, it always brings back fond childhood memories in New England of picking apples, carving pumpkins, and watching the leaves change into a kaleidoscope of glorious colors. I also get excited about fall flavors especially the return of every pumpkin-flavored food, drink, and treat you can imagine. By the way, have any of you tried the pumpkin smoothie at Jamba Juice? With fall also comes book festivals galore! I participated in two this year—the Princeton Children's Book Festival and the Brooklyn Book Festival. Thanks to those of you who stopped by to say hello. I can't tell you how much I love meeting all the kids and their parents! At the Brooklyn Book Festival I even took silly drawing requests from the kids on the Children's Stage in a 'Draw-Off' with fellow author and illustrator David Ezra Stein. We had a blast fielding such requests as "a TV with spikes" and a "dragon made of candy in a garden with a rainbow". I just love the way kids' minds work. bookfestivals2013 Yes, a young girl even asked me to sign her pants. How cute is that? For the festivals, I created two new learn-how-to-draw printables based on my latest books Frog & Friends and Owl & Friends and figured I'd upload them here for your budding little artist as well! Click on the pictures below to download the PDF's or you can also always find free printables on my website here. DRAW-THE-OWL DRAW-THE-FROG owl&frog-bookbirthdaya Enjoy!!! xo-Joyce

Summer 2013 + MAJOR Happy News September 2, 2013 08:00 21 Comments

Maybe you've noticed it’s been a bit quiet over here this summer, but I have a good excuse, I promise! In addition to some MAJOR happy news that I'll share with you at the end of this post, here's a recap of my summer: njscbwi13b I attended the New Jersey SCBWI Annual Conference in Princeton where I also gave a workshop called WHAT IS YOUR BRAND?: Set Yourself APART With Branding. I made everyone switch gears for a bit—from the creative side to the business side of things—to think about their own marketing messages. I'm happy to say the workshop was well attended and ran smoothly (my top two fears!). For those of you interested in becoming an author or illustrator and don't know where to start, look up your SCBWI regional chapters here. See what's going on, get involved, and attend some events! sleepyheads-beara I turned in my final drawings for Sleepyheads, a picture book by Sandra Howatt for Beach Lane Books/Simon & Schuster that will be out Fall 2014. The book was drawn entirely in pencil and colored digitally in Photoshop which was a first for me! Above is a picture of one of the preliminary color proofs. I was nervous at first with the new technique but I'm really happy with the way it came out and I can't wait to share this book with you! owl&frog-bookbirthdaya I celebrated the release of two of my latest books published by PSS!/Penguin, Owl & Friends and Frog & Friends. These books got some awesome reviews here and here! lascbwi13b I had a fabulous, yet exhausting, time at the Annual SCBWI International Conference in Los Angeles. You know how much I love this conference as I've been attending for years and have blogged about it before here, here, and here! It was a cool summer in southern California and I attended a workshop given by Henry Winkler (aka The Fonz), need I say more? epcot-norway-family-a I conquered Disney's Magic Kingdom, Epcot Center, Hollywood Studios, and Animal Kingdom in 4 days with my in-laws and 4 kids (nieces & nephews) ages 5-8. The trip had its moments but I felt like I needed a vacation after the vacation, you know what I mean? The kids had a BLAST though and that's what's important. scholasticmeetinga I had a lovely brainstorming meeting at Scholastic and received advance copies of my two upcoming Cartwheel/Scholastic board books: Hug You, Kiss You, Love You (November 2013) and My Lucky Little Dragon (January 2014)! The books are adorned with glittery covers and absolutely adorable. They are available for pre-order on Amazon now. I can't wait to share these books with you too! And now for the BIG news! With today being Labor Day and all, I thought it would be the perfect day to announce that my DH and I are expecting our first child in February—a girl! We are SO excited and can't wait to welcome our very own little Cupcake to the world! joyce-pregnanta I can't say I've had the easiest first-trimester. I've been begrudgingly taking some time off (for anyone who knows me that may be hard to believe!) as I was hit pretty hard with that first-trimester ickiness that include nausea, fatigue, and strong food aversions. Having a job where I work for myself during this time has been both a blessing and a curse. I found it hard to get motivated some mornings and the temptation to take an afternoon nap was all too great on some days (ok, many days) that I gave in and did. Much to my relief, I'm FINALLY starting to feel like myself again and I'm ready to really get back to work! (I'm sure my Editors would be happy about that!) I hope you've all had a super lovely weekend, friends. Happy Labor Day! xo Joyce

Happy Book Birthday and Giveaway! June 27, 2013 05:55 14 Comments

I am excited to announce the release of my two latest books: owl&frog-bookbirthday-blog Cute chubby critters and surprise endings - what's there NOT to love? See a sneak peek of these books on the blog Design of the Picture Book! The highly esteemed Kirkus Reviews gave Frog & Friends a rave review calling it "An engaging riddle book with standout illustrations"! Squeee! Read the full review here. Find these and my other books at your local bookseller or on To celebrate I am giving away 2 autographed sets of these books! To enter, leave a comment with your favorite animal. Two people will be selected by random drawing. The giveaway ends on July 4th, 2013 at midnight EST. Two winners will be announced within two days of the end of the giveaway. The winners must provide their name and mailing address in order to receive the prize. If the winner does not respond within two weeks of winning, the prize is forfeited and an alternate winner will be selected.  (The giveaway is open to U.S. residents only.) Happy Fourth! xo-Joyce **UPDATE** Using's True Random Number Generator, the winners of the Happy Book Birthday and Giveaway are Aurelia and Joanna! Many thanks to all those who entered - I loved reading your comments! (and I learned about a couple of new adorable animals too) Stay tuned for more giveaways soon! xo

Next BIG Thing: Blog Tour May 1, 2013 13:04 2 Comments

The Next Big Thing blog tour, which first started in Australia, brings awareness to authors and illustrators and their work by way of their blogs. Many thanks to the lovely and wonderfully talented author Trisha Speed Shaskan for inviting me to participate. Her latest book TRULY, WE BOTH LOVED BEAUTY DEARLY! THE STORY OF SLEEPING BEAUTY AS TOLD BY THE GOOD AND BAD FAIRIES illustrated by Amit Tayal will be published in August. I’ll answer some questions about my latest work, then pass it on to a few other authors/illustrators. Now, onto the questions! 1) What is the working title of your next book?
Owl&Friends-web-cover Frog&Friends-web-cover
My next two soon-to-be released books are Owl & Friends and Frog & Friends. They will be published by Price Stern Sloan in June 2013. 2) Where did the idea come from for the book? I really love wood grain textures and even offer a line of cards printed on actual birch wood veneer made from sustainably harvested trees. I wanted to incorporate scanned wood textures into my illustrations which led to the initial idea of some sort of tree book. I also love surprise endings in books (and movies for that matter!) and came up with a concept that put the two things together. 3) What genre does your book fall under? Board Book 4) What actors would you choose to play the part of your characters in a movie rendition? For these particular books I imagine animated shorts (they are board books after all) with Morgan Freeman's friendly, soothing voice over narration. That man could read a telephone book and I'd hang on every word! lol 5) What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book? A board book series that introduces young children to the joys of nature's cutest creatures and their natural habitats. 6) Who is publishing your book? Price Stern Sloan, an imprint of Penguin Group. These are the same folks who publish the beloved Mad Libs series. Cool, eh? 7) How long did it take you to write the first draft of the manuscript? It's hard to say because the books were originally written as a single picture book and then was broken down into two board books. I would say the very first draft of the picture book version took about a couple of weeks. However, I'd like to add that I usually let ideas simmer in my head for months (if not years) before I actually put it down on paper. 8) What other books would you compare this story to within your genre? Board books are one of my favorite genres as a book lover and a sweet spot for me as an illustrator. A lot of the Eric Carle books teach practical lessons about nature in a fun and colorful way and there are also the "IN MY" series by Sara Gillingham and Lorena Siminovich that also deal with animals and their habitats. 9) Who or what inspired you to write this book? Children and nature - there is just SO much cuteness in both I can hardly stand it sometimes! 10) What else about the book might pique the reader's interest? Each book contains a fold-out final page that reveals a fun surprise ending. Thank you so much for stopping by! The Next Big Thing Blog Tour continues with the following 2 wonderful authors/illustrators who are also represented by my extraordinary agent Teresa Kietlinski of Prospect Agency: Annie Bach will talk about her latest NIGHT-NIGHT, FOREST FRIENDS (Grosset & Dunlap/Penguin) FORESTFRIENDS               Brooke Boynton Hughes will talk about her upcoming BABY LOVE by Angela DiTerlizzi (Beach Lane Books/S&S) and CUPCAKE COUSINS by Kate Hannigan (Hyperion/Disney) BabySample_BBH           And last, but not least, Stefan Jolet will talk about his upcoming CINDERELLAPHANT by Dianne de las Casas (Pelican Publishing Co.): Ella-Cover                 xo-Joyce

Nothing Says Love Like Handmade April 22, 2013 16:37 7 Comments

There is something truly special about handmade goodies, imperfections and all. Seeing all the wonderful DIY and craft projects on Pinterest, Etsy, and craft fairs has got me itching to do some myself so I created some Cut-&-Sew Plushie projects and posted them to Spoonflower. For those of you who don't know, Spoonflower makes it possible for people to design, print, and sell their own fabric and let me tell ya, I've been having SEW much fun! Here are some of my finished projects: bacon&egg-plush cupcake-plush neko-plush Pretty darn cute, if I may say so myself. I don't even really sew (only buttons every now and then). I even butchered one of my old throw pillows for the stuffing! I'm not planning to sell the plushies themselves but I've decided to give them away as gifts with my books. It's also made me want to round up some friends to have a sewing party! You can get the fabric here if you want to make some yourself. Send me pictures if you do or post them to the Facebook page–I'd LOVE to see all your cute creations! :D xo-Joyce

Never Stop Learning March 12, 2013 19:07 5 Comments

dreams-thoreau Every now and then I receive emails from people whose dream is to have a children's book published but they don't know where to start. I know from my own experience it takes dedication, perseverance, continuing education, and tons of moral support and that doesn't stop even after your first book is published. With no formal art education other than a college figure drawing class, I started Wanart in 2003 and I spent the next several years absorbing everything I could, trying many things, making many mistakes, spending lots of money, and drawing—lots of drawing, relying on nothing but hope and passion to keep me going most of the time. Between the trial and error (and tears!) were some small successes and then I met my first publisher in 2008. I've had 3 books published now with 6 more on the way in the next couple of years. My designs are also found on stationery and gift products sold all over the world. It is a dream come true. If there is some goal in life that you are working toward, a dream you are striving to turn into reality – don’t ever give up. Even if you can't afford to give up all of your commitments, there are other options. Maybe keeping your day job is in your best interest at the moment as you pursue the ins and outs of your dream after hours (which is what I had to do the first couple of years of my business). But also have the courage to put yourself out there, surround yourself with people who believe in you, be honest with yourself, focus on your core strengths, figure out how to maximize what you do best, create from your heart and soul (not what the next guy is doing), and never stop learning. Ever since I took that first continuing education course at SVA in 2003, I've experienced the power of continuing education and how it can enrich your life (it's why I also now teach courses at SVA). A great place to start learning about publishing is to join the Society Of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators. They have many regional conferences and two national ones in New York City and Los Angeles every year. You may have even seen me post about these awesome conferences on my blog. You will not find a more supportive group of people in your life. Having attended many over the years, the New Jersey SCBWI Annual Conference is one of the best. This conference has a great variety of workshops, top-notch faculty, and is a real value for the cost. For the first time, I will actually be leading a workshop on branding so I hope you can join me! The workshop is called "What's Your Brand?" and will explore the meaning and benefits of branding for writers and illustrators, ways to identify and communicate your brand, and how it can provide inspiration and focus in your creative work and marketing activities. Invest in yourself and register today! NJSCBWI_PB_Banner Also, it's over my birthday weekend so I hope you can celebrate with me too! :) xo Joyce

2013 Year of the Water Snake February 9, 2013 17:13 3 Comments

Happy New Year -- again! February 10th marks the start of the Lunar New Year as well as the Year of the Snake (specifically the Water Snake). As the most significant holiday in China, the Lunar New Year is like Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year rolled up into one giant celebration. Personally, this has always been one of my favorite holidays as it always brings back childhood memories of the smell of fresh cut flowers, red envelopes filled with "lucky money", big family dinners, and vibrant, lively festivals with lion dancing and firecrackers. Chinese culture has always been a great source of inspiration for my work. The Snake is the sixth sign of the Chinese Zodiac, which consists of 12 animal signs that include the Rat (or Mouse), Ox, Tiger, Rabbit, Dragon, Horse, Sheep (or Goat), Monkey, Rooster, Dog, and Pig. Don't know what zodiac sign you are? Look it up on this handy little chart I created here. According to Chinese tradition, a person’s birth sign has a profound influence on personality and destiny. Those born under this sign are said to be charming, clever, analytical, and shrewd. Fired with intense determination, they hate to fail at anything and are determined to achieve their goals. Snakes tend to gravitate toward the finer things in life and so are sometimes deemed materialistic. Quick learners, lead by wisdom and intuition, Snakes will find that success comes easily to them. Famous Snakes include Alfred Nobel, Pablo Picasso, Bob Dylan, Audrey Hepburn, Brad Pitt, Oprah Winfrey, John F. Kennedy, and J. K. Rowling. Wishing you a ssssssssuper year! May the Year of the Snake bring good fortune to you all! xo Joyce

For Your Little Valentine... February 4, 2013 12:22

Valentine's Day is right around the corner! The perfect keepsake gifts for your little Valentine that can be enjoyed beyond February 14th!
Order these sweet little books on or, find them at/order them from your local bookstore! Or, why wait for Valentine's Day? Tell someone how much you care by sending them one of our kiwi and pear e-cards! xo Joyce

A New Year's Greeting from Me to You! December 31, 2012 19:37 1 Comment

xo Joyce

Last Call for Dragon Onesies! December 10, 2012 22:50

Chinese New Year is not till February 10, 2013, but I wanted to let everyone know that we have less than a dozen pieces left of our popular Year of the Dragon onesies in size 6-12m and once they're gone, they're gone for good. Don't wait to purchase one for all the little dragons in your life. Click HERE to order yours now! xo-Joyce p.s. Next up, the Year of the Snake! :)

A Week in Paris November 20, 2012 04:35 4 Comments

I just returned from a week in Paris. Despite it being cold and gray the entire week that I was there, Paris is as beautiful and charming as I had hoped. It's a city I've been wanting to visit for years. I took French for 7 years when I was younger. The French did not quite come back to me but my Frenglish was excellent! I stayed at the Hotel La Belle Juliette, a lovely boutique hotel located in the St.-Germain-des-Prés area of Paris. The hotel was charming and stylish with many cute Parisian details. The view outside my window. Marche aux Puces de la Porte de Vanves (the flea market at Porte de Vanves). Oddities, curiosities, and antiques galore! The Notre Dame Cathedral--a masterpiece of solemn beauty. After climbing 400 steps of a spiral staircase--a breathtaking view from the top of the Notre Dame. Never having been to the Eiffel Tower before but having looked at an image of the Eiffel Tower many times because of a very popular illustration I created of Kiwi and Pear at the Eiffel Tower, it was a little surreal to finally be there. The Pont de Solférino, a footbridge over the River Seine. What was especially intriguing to me about this bridge were the thousands of love locks attached to the railings on the bridge. I had never seen anything like this before, however, it's apparently quite common to find love locks on bridges all over Europe and Asia and I read they are even starting to pop up on the Brooklyn Bridge. Couples inscribe their names on padlocks, attach them to the bridges, and then toss the keys into the river to symbolize everlasting love. Cute huh? Climbed more steps, 234 to be exact, at The Arc de Triomphe to behold beautiful night views of Champs-Élysées Avenue and the Eiffel Tower. A view from the underbelly of The Arc de Triomphe. Housed in a former railway station built in the late 19th century, the interior of The Musée d'Orsay was stunning. French impressionist and post-impressionist masterpieces by Monet, Renoir, Degas, Cezanne, Gauguin, and Van Gogh set against the backdrop of charming, old railway station details like big, beautiful clock windows. I was surely in art heaven. One of my favorite parts of the trip was a visit to Montmartre. Perched up high on a hill in the northern part of Paris, Montmartre was once the Bohemian artistic quarter of Paris where artists such as Picasso, Van Gogh, Dali, and Renoir once lived and worked. With its steep, winding cobblestone streets, ivy-covered buildings, and many cafes, Montmartre has retained a quaint and charming 'village' ambiance. Movies such as Amelie and Moulin Rouge are set in Montmartre. I didn't catch a show here but, as I was standing outside, it was fun to think what the Moulin Rouge must have been like in its heyday. The Musée du Louvre was spectacular. The building itself, a former royal palace, was incredibly ornate and massive with elaborately painted and plastered ceilings and walls. The Mona Lisa and the Venus de Milo were just some of the many treasures I saw at the Louvre. Galeries Lafayette Haussman, must be one of the most stunning department stores I have ever been to. The center of the 10-story building is open and atrium-like, and it’s capped by a huge, gorgeous dome made of glass and steel which uses hundreds of lights in a dazzling display of multi-colored illumination. At the Bon Marche Grand Epicerie, an international food market, the food displays were a delight in their own way and it was such a fun place to browse. One thing I learned on this trip was that the French do sweets like nobody's business and they do things with chocolate that you would not believe! I had some of the best desserts I ever had in my life in Paris and, yes, that's a chocolate ape! For anyone with the faintest interest in desserts, Pierre Hermé is undoubtedly a must-visit when in Paris. Some highlights of French food. The crêpe in the lower left (chocolate with toasted almonds, salted butter caramel, vanilla ice cream, and fresh whipped cream) was the best I ever had and was from a place called Little Breizh. Yes, I know it's Paris - but I can't live without my Asian food! Above some highlights of Asian food in Paris. If you're looking for a nice and affordable meal around the Louvre (or a little reprieve from French food), I discovered a little gem right around the corner from the Rue de Rivoli side of the Louvre, a Japanese ramen (lamen in French) restaurant called Higuma. Can you tell how excited I was to be there? Happy Thanksgiving everybody! Gobble, gobble! xo Joyce ps. Photos were taken on an iPhone, edited with the app Camera+, and joined together using the app Pic Jointer. All edited and put together on the plane ride back from Paris. I LOVE technology!

New York Comic Con 2012: A Celebration of Pop Culture October 14, 2012 16:44

The New York Comic Con, a pop culture cornucopia that brings together the comic book, movie, music, and TV worlds, descended upon New York City this past weekend. For the first time in it's seven-year history, the convention was sold out with over 115,000 people in attendance. I was lucky enough to nab a professional four-day pass before they were sold out - one of the perks of being an author and teacher. I had such a fun time! Larger-than-life exhibitor booths, installations, and costumed characters filled the show floor. As I was leaving the show Friday night, a 9 foot tall Transformers Bumble Bee came walking up the front door of the Javits (lower-left pic) - just another normal day at the NY Comic Con LOL Costumes galore - I LOVE all the fervent fandom! I don't think you will find a more passionate group of people. Products galore - everything from samurai swords to old-timey aviator goggles and never-ending walls of t-shirts and plush dolls. Comic Con silliness! It wasn't all fun and games - I managed to attend some educational/professional panels on pitching ideas, building community through social media, and making designer toys. I gathered lots of interesting info I can share with my students at SVA. My spoils from the show! (clockwise from top-left) A cotton dress by Pammy Cakes, a Domokun fuzzy backpack, a t-shirt by Ex-Boyfriend, and socks by Shinzi Katoh.      

Words of Wisdom from the SCBWI Summer Conference 2012 August 13, 2012 14:49 6 Comments

I just returned from the 41st Annual Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI) Summer Conference in Los Angeles. I came home feeling so inspired and empowered. One of the main messages of the conference that really resonated with me was to create in a way that speaks to the inner child within you. Here are a few other words of wisdom from the conference that I wanted to share with you to add positive and inspiring thoughts to your day! "Play every day." Melissa Sweet, author and illustrator "Give yourself permission to be imperfect — at least at first." Arthur Levine, Editorial Director Arthur A. Levine Books and a Vice President of Scholastic (also, the American editor for J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter series) "There is a doorway that will change your life, if you just walk through it." Bryan Collier, author and illustrator There are no shortcuts. Slow down. Focus on what you can control." Steven Malk, Literary agent with Writers House For anyone out there thinking about writing or illustrating children's books and don't know where to start - my first piece of advice is to join SCBWI. Through SCBWI, immerse yourself in the craft, business, inspiration, and community - you won't regret it! Here are a few photos from the conference: [caption id="attachment_3029" align="aligncenter" width="540" caption="The best thing I love about attending these conferences are the people - whether novice or expert, everyone is so encouraging and supportive. It is unlike any industry and I feel truly blessed to be part of it."][/caption] [caption id="attachment_3032" align="aligncenter" width="540" caption="Signing copies of my book WE BELONG TOGETHER at the Pizza & Wine Book Signing Party with author Trisha Speed Shashkan."][/caption] [caption id="attachment_3035" align="aligncenter" width="540" caption="Every year there is a poolside costume dance party. This year's theme was a 60's Hippie Hop! Needless to say - it was a groovy time. *Peace, Love, and Children's Books* Photo Credit: Debbie Ridpath Ohi ("][/caption] For an in-depth recap of the event and more photos, read the article SCBWI Summer Conference: A Gathering of Kindred Spirits featured in Publisher’s Weekly.
To quote Bryan Collier "It is a privilege to be able to create and express yourself" ...and I am so grateful to all of you every day for allowing me that privilege. xo Joyce

Summer Courses in NYC! June 1, 2012 11:17

Looking to expand your creative potential? Want to make extra income from your creative pursuits but not sure where to start? Or, maybe, you already started a creative business and want to stay motivated. Well, now you can! (Do I sound like an infomercial? :P) I am teaching two courses this summer at SVA's Continuing Education program. One course is on greeting card design, the other course on art licensing basics. Here are the links to the classes: Greeting Card Design Tuesdays Jun 12 – Aug 7 6:30PM - 9:30PM Art Licensing Wednesdays Jun 13 – Aug 8 6:30PM - 9:30PM If you have any questions about these courses feel free to contact me. Having taken these and other courses at SVA over the years I believe in the value of continuing education and have experienced first-hand how it can enrich your life. Never stop learning! xo Joyce ps. Sorry for those of you not in the New York City area. Much love to you guys and thanks for your support! ♥

My Book Reading at Macy's Herald Square, NYC - May 5, 2012 May 7, 2012 13:30 2 Comments

My book reading at Macy's was wonderful! For those of you couldn't join us, here are some pictures and even a video clip from the event: [caption id="attachment_2893" align="aligncenter" width="225" caption="Signage in the store! Is that REALLY me?!"][/caption]
[caption id="attachment_2898" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Signing books for the kids!"][/caption] [caption id="attachment_2899" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Pictures with the kids! They were TOO cute. I wanted to take them all home with me!"][/caption] [caption id="attachment_2900" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="The smile on my face says it all, don't you think? What a FABULOUS day!"][/caption] [caption id="attachment_2901" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Following the reading, the kids got to decorate cupcakes courtesy of Macy's. Based on the evidence we found, looks like some were also eaten!"][/caption]
What better way to end a reading then with a little song!

Join Me at Macy's Herald Square, NYC - Saturday, May 5th, 2012 April 30, 2012 19:07

Join me for a reading of my books "You Are My Cupcake" and "We Belong Together" at Macy's Herald Square, NYC this Saturday, May 5th! Scholastic has partnered with Macy's to offer guests a free signed copy of a book with any purchase in the Kids Department of $25 or more (while supplies last). So, if you're in the NYC area, or will be, this weekend - it would be great to see you! Do I really need to give you all a reason to go shopping? ;)

Macy's Reading Circle with Joyce Wan


Saturday, May 5, 2012

Time: Noon

Macy's Herald Square 151 W 34th Street 7th Floor, Kids' Department New York, NY

For All You Art Lovers: Photos from The Armory Show 2012 March 12, 2012 16:35 2 Comments

This past weekend I went to The Armory Show, an international contemporary art fair and one of of the most important annual art events in New York. The Armory Show featured over 200 leading galleries from around the world displaying some of the most notable in contemporary and modern art, all for sale! I saw art that was big, conceptual, bright, awe-inspiring, innovative, bizarre and playful -- a visual cornucopia of colors, textures and materials! Since my bank account can't quite support an Andy Warhol, I went more to window shop. Here are some pieces which particularly caught my eye -- hope they inspire you like they inspired me! You can't tell here but these photographs by Andres Serrano using silhouettes of staged toy figures were big - about 4.5 ft tall by 5.5 ft wide! I was especially delighted to see work by one of my favorite artists, Yoshitomo Nara. There were even pieces by Pablo Picasso! And Keith Haring! Believe it or not this piece is made of cast resin (looks like stuffed garbage bags doesn't it?)! This one is by the always bewildering Marina Abramovic, I wonder if the person comes with this piece? LOL Andy Warhol - I'll take 3, please! ;)

Post-Valentine's Day Cheer - Books & Buttons Give-Away! February 16, 2012 13:19 29 Comments

{**UPDATE** Using to generate a random number, the winner is Susan who posted on February 16th. Susan, please contact me at with your details. Thanks for entering everyone - I LOVED, LOVED, LOVED reading your posts! :D I will be hosting another give-away soon! xo} I hope everyone had a nice Valentine's Day (whether you're a fan of the holiday or not)! Any holiday that fills the world with hearts is an awesome one in my book! I spent the evening teaching my Greeting Card Design class at the School of Visual Arts but I ♥ my students so that's ok, right? For those of you who missed my last give-away on the wanart facebook page, I'm going to spread a little post-Valentine's Day cheer by throwing another one right now on this blog! Just comment below (or on the facebook link relating to this blog post) and tell me what the best thing was about your Valentine's Day. Even if it was just sitting at home eating leftovers while watching Cupcake Wars - I want to know! I will randomly pick one winner on Friday, February 24th at 10am to win a set of my signed board books YOU ARE MY CUPCAKE and WE BELONG TOGETHER along with a set of 24 pinback buttons as in the photo! Good luck! xo-Joyce


p.s. I posted this new drawing on facebook but wanted to post it here as well because it is inspired by all of you!

For your little Valentine... January 25, 2012 00:19

Perfect keepsake gifts for your little Valentine that can be enjoyed beyond February 14th!
Order these sweet little books on or, find them at / order them from your local bookstore! Keep an eye on our facebook page as we will be posting give-aways leading up to Valentine's Day. Also, checkout the cutest love cards to send to that special someone.

For your little Valentine... January 25, 2012 00:15 2 Comments

Perfect keepsake gifts for your little Valentine that can be enjoyed beyond February 14th!

Order these sweet little books on or, find them at / order them from your local bookstore! Keep an eye on our facebook page as we will be posting give-aways leading up to Valentine's Day. Also, visit our website for the cutest love cards to send to that special someone. xo-joyce

2012 The Year of the Water Dragon January 13, 2012 17:20

Happy New Year -- again! January 23rd marks the start of the Lunar New Year as well as the Year of the Dragon (specifically the Water Dragon). This has always been one of my favorite holidays of the year as it always brings back fond childhood memories of fresh cut flowers at home, lucky red envelopes filled with cash, big family dinners, and vibrant festivals with lion dancing and firecrackers. My cultural heritage has always been a great source of inspiration for me. The very first card line I launched when I started Wanart featured my Zodiac Zoo designs which was a simpler, more stylized version of the zodiac animals and they are still one of my best-selling today. The Dragon is the fifth sign of the Chinese Zodiac, which consists of 12 animal signs that include the Rat, Ox, Tiger, Rabbit, Snake, Horse, Sheep (or Goat), Monkey, Rooster, Dog, and Pig. Apparently, everything is magnified in a Dragon year, there will be spectacular successes as well as crash-and-burn failures. Also, as water does not have a definite shape and it represents flow, movement, and fluidity, this will be a year of changes, adjustments, new directions, and unexpected turn of events. This is the year to try new things but be sure to tread carefully and prepare for the unexpected! According to Chinese tradition, a person’s birth sign has a profound influence on personality and destiny. For those expecting little Dragon babies, those born under this sign are said to be driven, unafraid of challenges, and willing to take risks. While Dragons frequently help others, rarely will they ask for help. They are very strong-willed and have tempers that can flare fast. Because Dragons prefer leading to being led, they have the potential for accomplishing many great things. For that perfect Year of the Dragon new baby gift - be sure to check out our Dragon onesies and onesie/bib sets. May the Year of the Dragon bring good fortune to you all! Wishing you all the happiest of New Years! xo joyce

Happy New Year and 2011 Recap January 4, 2012 02:04 2 Comments

Wow, 2011 was an AMAZING year! So many things have happened this past year for which I am beyond-words-grateful. The year also ended with a surprising bang as I was presented with a new book contract (more info below)! Some highlights:
♥ New Mobile Apps I was able to combine my two passions — art and technology — with the release of Kiwi and Pear's World Adventure, an interactive storybook app, and Kiwi and Pear's Balloon Adventure game for the iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad. With over 25,000 downloads combined to date - I am so thrilled to have the opportunity to spread love, hugs, and happiness all over the world! Kiwi and Pear Balloon Adventure ♥ New Licensing Partnerships Collaborating with amazing companies such as Badge Bomb has enabled me to focus a little more on what I love to do most which is illustration and design! Also, I still get a kick out of running into products with my designs on them in stores! Look out for some of these cool new items in 2012: Badge Bomb Magnets and  Zodiac Zoo Buttons

♥ New Books Published The release of my two latest books You Are My Cupcake and We Belong Together published by Cartwheel / Scholastic. you are my cupcake cover

we belong together cover

♥ Book Launch Celebration All my family, friends, and colleagues in one room to celebrate the release of my new books with me — and with tasty cupcakes! What more is there to say? Book Launch with Jeff Salane

♥ Last-Minute Hawaiian Getaway This trip reminded me that we all need to take a break from work and do something fun, out-of-the-ordinary, and spontaneous sometimes. As I gazed in awe at a full rainbow that I spotted in the middle of a field while driving around the Hawaiian countryside (after having made my friend pull over on the side of the road so that I could take pictures!), it also reminded me that we should never lose touch with our childlike sense of wonder. hawaii rainbow ♥ Teaching Continuing Education Courses at The School of Visual Arts, NYC Having taken these very SVA continuing education courses and now, seven years later, teaching them myself has been an incredibly rewarding experience. I have found great joy in helping people take their creative pursuits to the next level, and hopefully, providing them with as enriching of an experience as continuing education courses has provided me over the years. For those of you in the New York area, make good on some of those New Year's resolutions and register for my 2012 Spring Semester course on Greeting Card Design or Art Licensing!

♥ 2011 Society of Illustrators Original Art Show One of my new books We Belong Together was 1 of 150 books selected out of 600 entries nationwide to be featured in the Society of Illustrators 2011 Original Art Show, an exhibit which showcases the year’s best children’s books. Not only was it my first time having a piece of my professional work hanging in a gallery but to be featured alongside artists, whose books I loved as a child and still idolize today, was a dream come true. original art show joyce wan ♥ New Book Contract Just days before the Christmas holiday (when I thought everybody had gone on vacation already — mental or otherwise), I received wonderful news from my rock star literary agent Teresa Kietlinski of Prospect Agency that she had finalized the contract for me to illustrate SLEEPYHEADS, by Sandra Howatt, a cozy bedtime book about all the places baby animals rest their sleepy heads to be published by Beach Lane Books / Simon & Schuster! What a way to close out a year! Thank you to all of my dear family, friends, and fans for your inspiration and support. I wish you all the very best in 2012 and am very excited to share a brand new year with you. Let me know, what were some of the best things that happened to you in 2011? xoxo-joyce

Original Art Show Opening Reception October 29, 2011 19:12 5 Comments

My book We Belong Together was 1 of 150 books recently selected out of 650 entries nationwide to be featured in the Society of Illustrators 2011 Original Art Show, an exhibit which showcases the year’s best children’s books. Here's a link to more information about the show including the complete list of all the illustrators and titles that are featured. The show had its opening reception on October 27, 2011. I have attended this show twice before in 2009 and 2010. I will never forget when I met Eric Carle last year here where he received his lifetime achievement award from the Society of Illustrators! The reception was a madhouse - two floors, filled wall to wall, with people and art! Part of the fun was trying to locate my piece on the walls and there it is! Scholastic chose the last spread from the book to be featured in the show. It was so exciting and a bit surreal to see it on the wall! My book might have actually also been the only board book in the entire show! Out of the 150 books chosen to be included in the show, three were awarded medals-one Gold and two Silver-for best in show. There was an awards ceremony to recognize these winners. Here is Lane Smith accepting one of the Silver medals for his latest book Grandpa Green. That's Kadir Nelson's head in the foreground (that's how crowded it was LOL)! He received the other Silver medal for his book Heart and Soul: The Story of America and African Americans. The Gold medal went to Rosalyn Schanzer for her book Witches! The Absolutely True Tale of Disaster in Salem. The exciting evening was capped off by a wonderful dinner, hosted by Scholastic, at Park Avenue Autumn with Lori Benton, VP and Publisher; David Saylor, VP and creative director; my editor, Jeff Salane, along with other Scholastic editors and designers and three other artists, Leonid Gore, Stephen Savage, and David Ercolini, who also had books published by Scholastic in the show. When we sat down at the table for dinner each of us were presented with a menu that read: "Scholastic Congratulates the Artists in the Original Art Show 2011". How nice is that? Speaking of interesting food combinations, here is one of Park Avenue Autumn's signature dishes - Broccoli with Cheetos! I actually found a video online of the chef at Park Avenue Autumn giving a demonstration on making this dish! What an amazing and inspiring evening and definitely one of the highlights of my life! If you are in the New York area, or will be, I urge all of you to check out the Original Art Show which runs until December 29, 2011. The show gives you such a rare opportunity to take a close look at some of the beautiful work being produced by some of today's best illustrators. The Society of Illustrators 128 East 63rd Street (between Park and Lexington Avenues) Tel: (212) 838-2560 Gallery Hours: 10 AM– 8 PM Tuesday 10 AM– 5 PM Wednesday - Friday 12 noon– 4 PM Saturday Closed most holidays xo-joyce

Now LIVE on iTunes! October 16, 2011 15:24

We are pleased to announce the release of Kiwi and Pear's Balloon Adventure App for your iPod, iPhone, or iPad - our latest collaboration with the wonderful people at New York-based independent iPhone and Casual Games development studio Zephyr Games. Kiwi and Pear’s Balloon Adventure is a fun and fast paced arcade game that allows you to join Kiwi and Pear as they explore the skies in their balloon. Using the tilt feature on your iPod, iPhone, or iPad, help Kiwi and Pear avoid obstacles such as angry thunder clouds and pickup points, hearts, and speed boosts as they fly up into the stratosphere. Complete game center integration with leaderboards and achievements, and 4 different zones to explore during your adventure into the skies! Become an aerial explorer, flying through the skies and racking up the highest score you can! Available on iTunes now for only $0.99. Download the game, rate the app, and be sure to leave a comment! We need each and every iTunes review and positive comment we can get! Thank you! ^_^ View the trailer below: