Creatives across borders: Tita Berredo

Adebayo Adegbembo (Baba Funke)
Creatives Across Borders
6 min readJan 16, 2024


Tita Berredo
Listen to the full interview with Tita Berredo on Spotify

Tita Berredo is a Brazilian picture book writer and illustrator. She’s the illustrator coordinator for SCBWI (Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators) British Isles and the art director of its magazine, Words and Pictures. She’s also on the Scottish Committee of the Society of Authors and a hostess for the Association of Illustrators’ events in Glasgow.

In this interview, Tita walks us through her journey from marketing to the arts. She shares how she’s integrated deeply into the UK children’s books industry. Her story is one of courageous steps driven by intentional goals to build, connect, learn and share.

Upbringing and early influences

Growing up, I was also a big fan of cartoons, picture books, animation, anything with drawings. I also come from a very artistic family. My uncle’s an artist and at least three aunts are artists too. My mother is a screenwriter, and my father is a psychoanalyst and a self-help author.

Meeting hubby was a game changer

On a trip to Chile, Tita met Martin, a Glaswegian, who was living in Singapore at the time. Meeting Martin was a life changing experience for Tita. Through him, she discovered her true passion for arts and was encouraged to pursue it as a professional career. While in Singapore, she immersed herself in the children’s literature world, attending festivals like the Asian International Children’s Festival and honing her drawing skills daily. She and Martin eventually moved to the UK in 2017 where she decided to take a master’s degree in children’s literature and illustration specialising in picture books at Goldsmiths University of London.

Highlights of Tita’s journey since going professional as an artist

  • Completing her master’s program at Goldsmiths University of London.
  • Landing her agent, Sorche Fairbank.
  • Winning the best children’s alphabet at London’s House of Illustration competition.
  • Membership invitation to the Scottish committee for the Society of Authors.
  • Illustrator coordinator for SCBWI British Isles conference 2023.
  • The latest and probably the biggest so far in her career is having her wordless book ‘The Dress’ showcased at the Bologna children’s books fair.

How Tita landed her agent — Sorche Fairbank

Right after her master’s program, Tita was faced with the question of what next to do. There, she decided she’d share as much as she could of her picture book, The Dress.

Though, still very rough at the time, she made a big montage of that and applied for the Association of Illustrators’ Illustrators Gallery at the London Book Fair. She was selected and displayed the montage all over there. She had the whole part where her character was dancing in a big, framed mural. On the first day of the fair, she got a surprise email from an agent saying, she’d seen her artwork on display and would like to represent her. The rest is history as they say.

The result of that has meant taking a broader look at her original story and transforming it to cater for different audiences especially the larger US market under the direction of her agent. Reflecting on the experience of displaying her works at the London book fair, Tita says,

That’s the right thing because you are betting in the dark. You don’t know who is eventually going to see you. What will make a difference is if everyone sees you and that’s courageous because it’s hard to put yourself out there. By doing that, you’re holding yourself to judgment or criticism but also opening yourself up to opportunities.

Tita Berredo’s display of ‘The Dress’ mural at the London Book Fair

Brazilian cultural influences on Tita’s works

She cites Roger Mello as a big one. Roger’s a prolific, award-winning author who coincidentally was first published by one of Tita’s cousins who used to own a children’s publishing house. She grew up with his books and fell in love with his evolving styles.

Others are, Renato Moriconi, Alexandre Rampazo and, Odilon Moraes.

Integrating into the UK’s children’s book industry

Tita says her social personality and love for making new friends played a big part. Through regular communication with people and wanting to immerse herself in the children’s books community, opportunities came knocking for her to facilitate events and workshops. With this, her integration happened organically as she gave her best to these opportunities often for free.

Affiliated organizations — SCBWI, SOA, AOI

Tita joined the Society of Authors (SOA) because she needed advice and contract opportunities when she was starting out with her agent. She started doing a lot of events with them as well, helping to organize the Scottish retreat and Christmas lunches to mention a few.

She joined the Association of Illustrators (AOI) because of its focus on illustrators. With them, she usually runs workshops and sketch crawls which involves going to museums and facilitating activities for people. She enjoys that aspect of illustration because it’s a way of encouraging people by giving back for all the help she also got starting out.

The Society of Children’s Books Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI) brings it all together as it caters to her niche, children’s books. She started by volunteering for the Glasgow chapter, doing a critique for picture books and facilitating activities. That led to more invitations to run actual master classes. Because she was drawing constantly as well and talking to people, she was given the opportunity to become the illustration feature editor for SCBWI British Isle’s Words and Pictures magazine. That involved showcasing illustrators, their processes and works in the magazine. Her contribution towards the magazine led to her selection as the illustrator coordinator during the last SCBWI British Isle conference in 2023.

Impact and opportunities

90% of Tita’s clients come from her affiliated organizations for obvious reasons. They are people who know her work, people who’ve dealt with her on a personal basis, and are drawn to her personality. In her own words,

I think it kind of worked for me this way and it might work for most people. The more active you are, the more you get. If you are passive, you’re going to get passive [responses]. If you’re not seen, you don’t exist. Being there at events and communicating with people means that people remember you.

Current and future projects

Following some interesting suggestions from a couple of her favourite UK publishers, Tita’s now focusing on drawing animals with a mix of humour.

Tita just delivered her first middle grade book cover for a book called Ghost of Hawkthorn by Stephanie Cottela. She’s currently illustrating a heartfelt book about a boy with anxiety by Sarah Baker.

She’s also been commissioned to illustrate a picture book for a Brazilian publisher called Editora Peirópolis and it has dinosaurs (Tita’s childhood obsession) in the world!

Wishlist of collaborations

One is making a dinosaur book with her friend-in-dinosaur-affections Professor Luiz Eduardo Anelli who is a prestigious Brazilian palaeontologist. In Tita’s words,

“We got to know each other from me watching his livestream on Instagram about dinosaurs. And then he saw my drawings and said, Can you draw my things? And I started drawing his dinosaurs. And we became good friends.”

Contacting Tita

She’s very active on Instagram as @titaberredo. You can find more details on her website

Tips for aspiring artists

  • Tita thinks one of the healthiest things is to define your definition of a big break and start collecting them.
  • Another tip is to find your community similar to the SOAs, AOIs, SCBWI and to share your work as much as you can.
  • Experiment with genres, subjects, materials, and always aim to produce something instead of the perfect thing.
  • Compete with yourself; not others. Let others inspire you but not dictate your artistic voice.



Adebayo Adegbembo (Baba Funke)
Creatives Across Borders

Writer, Backend & Interactive Story App Developer (Unity3d/.Net). Building a library for Funke one resource (books and apps) at a time.