Winners announced for the 2020 ASA Style File Illustration Award Mentorships

We are delighted to announce the winners of the 2020 ASA Style File Illustration Award Mentorships. Thanks to a grant from the Copyright Agency Cultural Fund, the ASA has been able to offer five free mentorships tailored for exclusively for illustrators’ portfolios and picture book projects, valued at $540 each.

Due to a tiebreaker between two entries, we are thrilled to announce that we have been able to negotiate the budget to award six award mentorships instead of five.


Portfolio mentorship winners

Vaughan Duck

Maxine Hamilton

Sally McAteer

Shelley Knoll-Miller

Adele K. Thomas

Picture Book mentorship winner

Elizabeth Stewart


The winners will work closely with a mentor selected from the ASA Mentors’ Register to improve their professional portfolio or seek guidance on their picture book illustration project. The winners will also receive a free copy of the ASA’s Trade Publishing Agreement for Illustrators to help them pursue their publishing goals with confidence.

The applications were assessed by Liz Anelli and James Foley, who shared the following comments about the applicants and the winners.


Assessor Comments

“There was a very wide range here. Several of the portfolio applications were very strong, and I wouldn’t have recommended any changes; in fact if they had submitted that portfolio to the Style File I would have recommended they were accepted! I would love to have given everyone who submitted a picture book application a mentorship, as they all had some potential. It takes a lot of work to pull together a picture book application and I commend the entrants on their efforts.”

– James Foley

“Picture Book Applications: Some submissions clearly had much hard work put into them with a strong sense of genre suitability. There were beautifully drawn storyboards that showed potential once a suitable text and story arc can be developed. Particularly good, although rare to find was a child-like sense of humour.

Portfolio Applications: Some applicants did not show clarity of purpose or accurate self-assessment in their statements. The best displayed dynamic scenes introducing unique and interesting characters, with a good variety of images throughout. It is good to see samples both of colour and black and white illustrations applicable to wider book age ranges.”

– Liz Anelli


Liz Anelli

Liz and husband Mario moved from England to NSW in 2012. From her Newcastle Studio Liz illustrates picture books and junior fiction titles that have attracted numerous awards. She is an Ambassador for reading with Books In Homes and reviews picture books for CBCA Reading Time. She serves on committees of CBCA and SCBWI and is an Executive Board Director at ASA.

Her picture books are: The Biscuit Maker, Dry to Dry, Maddie’s First Day, Ten Pound Pom, Grace and Katie, One Photo, Desert Lake, Howzat!  

She also creates large illustrated maps that sell in stores and online at

Liz’s work is collected and shown at contemporary and state galleries and libraries.

State Library of Western Australia ‘Ten Pound Pom’

She presents at schools, festivals and increasingly on-line.

Liz is represented by Fiona Kenshole at Transatlantic Literary Agency USA and by The Children’s Bookshop &  Speakers Ink Speakers Agencies


James Foley

James Foley makes picture books, middle grade novels and comics for kids. He’s the author/illustrator of the S.Tinker Inc graphic novel series for middle primary: Brobot (2016), Dungzilla (2017) and Gastronauts (2018) star Sally Tinker, the world’s foremost inventor under the age of twelve, and Joe Tinker, her stinky baby brother. The fourth in the series, Chickensaurus, will be published in late 2020. James also illustrates the Toffle Towers series written by Tim Harris. James contributed to Total Quack Up (2018) and Funny Bones (2019), both anthologies of funny stories with proceeds going to charity. His earlier books My Dead Bunny (2015), In The Lion (2012), The Last Viking (2011) and The Last Viking Returns (2014) have all scored several honours, including children’s choice awards, shortlistings in the Children’s Book Council of Australia Book of the Year awards, and selection to the International Youth Library’s White Raven list. The sequel to My Dead Bunny, There’s Something Weird About Lena, will be published in late 2020.

James is an ambassador for Books In Homes and Room To Read. He is a massive Marvel movie nerd. He comes from a long line of queuing enthusiasts.


The 2020 ASA Style File Illustration Award Mentorships is generously supported by the Copyright Agency’s Cultural Fund.