Author Visits and Presentations

John Lechner speaking at an elementary school

I love to talk with students about writing, art, and creativity. I’m available for school visits and virtual visits, and I can customize my presentation to match the age and interests of your students.

In my typical presentation, I usually begin by drawing on a large easel. I’ll draw the frog from my book A Froggy Fable, then take suggestions from the students for other elements to add in the background (plants, animals, etc.) I talk about how I draw, and how no two artists draw the same way.

Then I talk about my process for creating picture books, starting with an idea journal, through rough drafts, revisions, and illustrations. I talk about how stories evolve as you work on them, it’s all part of the creative process. I also read one of my picture books, and of course answer questions from the audience about my work.

John Lechner with ukulele

Since I’ve worked in various art forms through the years, I can speak about many different topics. Here are a few of the creative elements I can add to your visit, whether it’s in person or online:

  • A deeper talk about the writing process, revisions, and being an author
  • A closer look at art materials I use, and how being an artist is more than just how well you draw
  • A talk about making comics, with tips and tricks for beginners
  • An interactive story exercise, where the students help me create a story as I draw itA short puppet show based on my book Sticky Burr, using paper puppets and scrolling scenery (10 minutes)
  • A musical fairy tale performed with violin and scrolling “crankie” stage (10 minutes)
  • A showing of my short animated films, and a brief introduction to hand-drawn animation
  • A demonstration of different kinds of puppets
  • Online workshop making puppets from cardboard, then inventing characters and a story around them

Pricing depends on the length of the presentation, the number of students, and the number of presentations for any one school. Please contact me and let me know your needs, and I can create a special presentation or a residency that’s just right for your students. Send inquiries to john (at)