Manelle Oliphant

Contact Me


My Agent

Adria Goetz of KT Literary

Hi, I’m Manelle.

My love for drawing and adventurous stories has always been related. I’m grateful for the stories my Mom read to me. I remember reading The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe with her, and may still have Mercer Mayer’s There’s a Nightmare in My Closet Memorized. As I’ve grown, drawing and reading remain two of my favorite pastimes. This is why, out of all the different kinds of artists in the world, I chose to be an illustrator of stories.

My Education

I got an illustration degree from BYU-Idaho in 2004. Afterward, I worked as a graphic designer/layout artist at a company called Studies Weekly. That experience helped me understand how to create print projects and has been valuable in my illustration work. Since then my illustrations have been used for picture books, chapter books, theater posters, magazine articles, and games.

My Process

My primary medium is watercolor, and I’m proficient in Photoshop, Indesign, Illustrator, and Procreate. I find these digital tools work hand in hand with traditional media. This technology has sped up my art process. Now I can make digital changes to traditional paintings that would have been impossible in the past.

My Life

I live in Salt Lake City with my husband and our two cats, Muggy and Drizzle. I also love our garden, taking long walks (not on the beach though, as we don’t have those in Salt Lake City), watching British murder mysteries, and Korean dramas. When I’m not working on client work, I create artwork for my personal story project Tales Fantastic. Find out more about it at

A few Books I love (and would love to illustrate if I got the chance)

Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell by Susana Clarke, anything by Charles Dickens, Jane Austen, or Diana Wynne Jones, and The Lockwood and Co. series by Jonathan Stroud. Hummingbird by Natalie Lloyd, and The Unselected Journals of Emma M. Lion by Beth Brower. As a kid, I loved Lloyd Alexander’s books, and the fairy tale books illustrated by Trina Hyman and P.J. Lynch.

For more about me you can watch this podcast interview I did with Inktober in November 2021


Selected Clients

Pixel + Ink, Peachtree Publishers, The Friend Magazine, LitJoy Crate, The Art Order, Gallery Nucleus

Related Work Experience

SCBWI Utah/Southern Idaho Illustrator Coordinator

Designer at Studies Weekly, Lehi, UT

Art Director at The Empress Theatre, Magna, UT

Art Teacher Westridge Elementary School, Provo, UT

Seamstress at Alinco Costumes, Murray, UT

Seamstress at BYU-Idaho Dance Costume Shop, Rexburg, ID


BFA in Illustration from BYU-Idaho

Recent Publications

Featured in:

  • Beneath the Waves Published by The Art Order 2020,
  • The Art of Mermay 2020 Edited by Tom Bancroft

Independently Published Books, Written and Illustrated by Manelle:

  • The Ghost and the Mermaid 2022,
  • The Marvelous Collection of Alvin Guilbert 2020,
  • The Great Naiad Discovery of 1909 2019,
  • Mermendium 2018,
  • Ghosts of the American West 2017,
  • Victorian Ghosts 2016

Traditionally Published books Illustrated By Manelle:

  • The Winterton Deception 1: Final Word by Janet Sumner Johnson
  • In the Rain by Elisabeth Spurr
  • In the Wind by Elisabeth Spurr
  • In The Snow by Elisabeth Spurr
  • In the Garden, by Elisabeth Spurr
  • In the Woods by Elisabeth Spurr
  • At the Beach by Elisabeth Spurr
  • Just in Time: The Rescue Begins in Delaware, by Carol Lynch Williams and Cheri Pray Earl
  • Sweet Secrets in Pensylvania, by Carol Lynch Williams and Cheri Pray Earl
  • The Wizard of Menlo Park New Jersey, by Carol Lynch Williams and Cheri Pray Earl
  • A Dangerous Day in Georgia by Carol Lynch Williams and Cheri Pray Earl


  • In “MerMay” Show at Gallery Nucleus May 2020
  • Second Place Wacom Mermay 2019