D'Avellonne van Dijk and Loulou Drinkwaard
We, D’Avellonne van Dijk and Loulou Drinkwaard, started Wilde Haren Publishing in the summer of 2020. We’ve been interested in representation in stories and illustration for quite a while, D’Avellonne through her work as illustrator and Loulou as Dutch teacher. One day we visited a store for secondhand books looking for children’s literature with pictures of characters that looked like us. We saw the most beautiful picture books with illustrations of playing children, astronauts, fairies, witches, knights and other magical creatures. None of the (main) characters looked like we did when we were children. The characters did not deviate from the Western norm. Moreover, other than a single animal story none of the books had diversity as a theme.
We felt inspired by this experience and the Black Lives Matter protests in the Netherlands and decided to start our own publishing company. At Wilde Haren Publishing inclusivity, visibility and diversity are the norm.