Best seller

From Autobiography to Illustrated Story

A course by Paloma Valdivia
Illustrator, Writer and Editor. Tulsa, Chile.
Joined August 2019
, Illustrator, Writer and Editor

Learn how to create a picture book starting from a personal story and an object from your childhood

  • Best seller Spanish with subtitles in English
  • 99% positive reviews (276)
  • 3610 students

Learn how to create a picture book starting from a personal story and an object from your childhood

Spanish with subtitles in English
  • 99% positive reviews (276)
  • 3610 students
  • 15 lessons (1h 49m)
  • 17 additional resources (4 files)
  • Online and at your own pace
  • Available on the app
  • Audio: Spanish
  • Spanish, English, Portuguese, German, French, Italian, Polish, Dutch
  • Level: Beginner
  • Unlimited access forever

Through colors, lines, and words, it is possible to recreate a story that today only exists in your memory. To help you with this mission, there’s no one better than children’s book’s illustrator and writer Paloma Valdivia. Her work has been translated into more than twenty languages and she has been recognized with several international awards, including The Best Book Awards by UNESCO and the German Graphic Arts Foundation.

In this course, Paloma teaches illustration and writing techniques for you to learn how to create an autobiographical story based on an object from your childhood. See how to rescue the memories inside your head and bring them to life in a unique and intimate illustrated book.

What will you learn in this online course?

Course table of contents

  • U1
    U1. Introduction
  • U2
    U2. Narrative theory
  • U3
    U3. Let's Get to It
  • U4
    U4. Creating the Story
  • FP
    FP Final project
View details

Paloma begins the course by showing you her trajectory and sharing her main artistic references. She then tells the story of how she became an illustrator and how she published her first children's book.

In the next stage, learn some resources and storytelling tools like the autobiography to incorporate into your story. See the importance of creating a daily journal with your thoughts and ideas and how to explore your memories through an object.

In the third unit, find your object and approach it from different perspectives, transforming it into the thread that connects your story. Paloma shares her method for structuring text and shows you how to make the first sketches for your final illustration.

Then, give the final shape to your illustrated story, adjusting your sketches until you define your final drawing. Learn how to work with graphite and paint, applying different coloring techniques to achieve the desired atmosphere.

In the final stage, polish your text, paying special attention to the cover and the final sentence of your story. Finally, Paloma gives you some advice on promoting and sharing your creation.

What is this course's project?

Create a written and illustrated autobiographical story, based on an object from your childhood.

Projects by course students

Who is this online course for?

Anyone who wishes to tell a personal story using illustration and writing techniques.

Requirements and materials

To take this course, it is recommended to have basic drawing skills.

Regarding materials, you will need a phone with a camera, an object from your childhood to base your story on, sheets of A3 drawing paper, pencils, erasers, ink, rulers, pens, and colored pencils.


3610 Students
276 Reviews
99% Positive ratings

Paloma Valdivia

A course by Paloma Valdivia

Teacher Plus
Illustrator, Writer and Editor

With a design degree from the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile and a postgraduate degree in illustration from the Escola d'Art i Disseny de Barcelona, illustrator, writer, and publisher Paloma Valdivia has taken the children and young adult’s books world by storm.

With work translated into more than twenty languages, she has been recognized internationally with the New Horizon Award of the Bologna Children's Book Fair (Italy), the BIB PLAQUÉ of the Bratislava Biennial of Illustration (Slovakia), the Municipal Literature Award of Santiago (Chile), The Best Book Awards granted by UNESCO and the German Graphic Arts Foundation, and the Little Bird Award, among others.

Besides having her own publishing house dedicated exclusively to children’s books, Ediciones Liebre, Paloma has collaborated with publishers and entities including Amanuta (Chile), Fondo de Cultura Económica (Mexico), Kalandraka (Spain), La Joie de Lire (Switzerland), Fatatrac, (Italy), and Enchanted Lion Books (USA).


  • U1


    • Introduction
    • Influences
    • What will we do in the course?
  • U2

    Narrative theory

    • Autobiography as a resource
    • The importance of registration
    • The object and memory
    • Materials and how to use them
  • U3

    Let's Get to It

    • Getting to Know the Object
    • Building the Story
    • Creating the First Sketches
  • U4

    Creating the Story

    • Making a clean copy of the sketch
    • Working with graphite and ink
    • Use of color and final details
    • Cover, text writing and closing
    • Share the story
  • FP

    Final project

    • From Autobiography to Illustrated Story

What to expect from a Domestika course

  • Learn at your own pace

    Enjoy learning from home without a set schedule and with an easy-to-follow method. You set your own pace.

  • Learn from the best professionals

    Learn valuable methods and techniques explained by top experts in the creative sector.

  • Meet expert teachers

    Each expert teaches what they do best, with clear guidelines, true passion, and professional insight in every lesson.

  • Certificates

    If you're a Plus member, get a custom certificate signed by your teacher for every course. Share it on your portfolio, social media, or wherever you like.

  • Get front-row seats

    Videos of the highest quality, so you don't miss a single detail. With unlimited access, you can watch them as many times as you need to perfect your technique.

  • Share knowledge and ideas

    Ask questions, request feedback, or offer solutions. Share your learning experience with other students in the community who are as passionate about creativity as you are.

  • Connect with a global creative community

    The community is home to millions of people from around the world who are curious and passionate about exploring and expressing their creativity.

  • Watch professionally produced courses

    Domestika curates its teacher roster and produces every course in-house to ensure a high-quality online learning experience.


Domestika's courses are online classes that provide you with the tools and skills you need to complete a specific project. Every step of the project combines video lessons with complementary instructional material, so you can learn by doing. Domestika's courses also allow you to share your own projects with the teacher and with other students, creating a dynamic course community.

All courses are 100% online, so once they're published, courses start and finish whenever you want. You set the pace of the class. You can go back to review what interests you most and skip what you already know, ask questions, answer questions, share your projects, and more.

The courses are divided into different units. Each one includes lessons, informational text, tasks, and practice exercises to help you carry out your project step by step, with additional complementary resources and downloads. You'll also have access to an exclusive forum where you can interact with the teacher and with other students, as well as share your work and your course project, creating a community around the course.

You can redeem the course you received by accessing the redeeming page and entering your gift code.

If you're a Plus member, when you complete a course you've purchased, you'll instantly get your personalized certificate. You can see all your certificates in the Certificates section of your profile. You can download your certificates as PDFs and share the link online. Learn more about certificates.
From Autobiography to Illustrated Story. Illustration course by Paloma Valdivia Best seller

From Autobiography to Illustrated Story

A course by Paloma Valdivia
Illustrator, Writer and Editor. Tulsa, Chile.
Joined August 2019
  • 99% positive reviews (276)
  • 3610 students