Paris in Stride: An Insider’s Walking Guide available for preorder. Paris in Stride: An Insider's Walking Guide. American in Paris watercolor illustrator. Paris architecture illustration. Paris green chairs. American in Paris watercolor illustrator. Paris map illustration.  Best Paris expat blogs. Paris 75006 guide. walking guide book Paris, shakespeare and company. Paris lamp post. Paris watercolor illustrations


I love traveling. The internet is great for scouting out places, but I always struggle with putting together an itinerary that’s concise, pragmatic and interesting enough to inspire meandering and really getting a sense of a city. But after living in Paris for almost 10 years, I’ve found a way to break down the city into one perfect little book... available for preorder. Paris in Stride: An Insider's Walking Guide. American in Paris watercolor illustrator. Paris architecture illustration. Paris green chairs. American in Paris watercolor illustrator. Paris map illustration.  Best Paris expat blogs. Paris 75006 guide. walking guide book Paris, shakespeare and company.


I’m thrilled to share with you my forthcoming book Paris in Stride: An Insider’s Walking Guide, to be published by Rizzoli New York on March 27th, 2018.  I teamed up with Franco-American culture writer Sarah Moroz (Vogue, I-D, Another, The New York Times) and we walked every inch of Paris from twisty cobblestoned streets to wide boulevards, canals, and parks, and organized seven irresistible walking tours with over 150 vibrant watercolor illustrations—from maps and markets, wine bars, shops, cheeses, and oh-so-French signage to our favorite architecture, patisserie, and packaging. We make no claim that Paris in Stride is comprehensive—rather it is the personal take of two engaged, creative, spirited people with great taste packaged into a beautiful, cherishable object—exactly who you would want to show you around!

Paris in stride blurb_Jessie Kanelos Weiner Rizzoli

This is where you come in, dear reader. I’m writing to request that you preorder a copy today. I know you’re thinking, “I thought Amazon was the devil? Why should I bother preordering when I can buy it at my local independent bookstore?” First of all, I send you a hug of gratitude for fighting the good fight against Jeff Bezos. But these days, even before a book comes out, Amazon preorders estimate the overall success of a book, how often it will pop up in searches and ultimately how many copies will be sold. So it’s a small way to support an up-and-coming artist and author. available for preorder. Paris in Stride: An Insider's Walking Guide. American in Paris watercolor illustrator. Paris architecture illustraiton. Institut suédois Paris. Paris doors illustration. American in Paris watercolor illustrator. Architecture illustrator Paris. Blue door. Best Paris expat blogs.

So if you already dream of visiting Paris or if you’re already dying to go back, I hope you can take a quick second to preorder a copy today and take a moment to leave an Amazon review on March 27th.  In any case thank you kindly for your love and encouragement throughout the many years I have called this fabulous city my home. And I can’t wait till Paris in Stride officially introduces you to my Paris.

Paris in Stride: An Insider's Walking Guide (Rizzoli). Paris illustrated city guide. Eiffel tower illustration. Best Paris guides. Rizzoli New York Paris book. Rodin the Thinker illustration.


Preorder HERE. And I’ll be sure to update you soon about my US book tour and the behind the scenes of the making of Paris in Stride.

How to be an illustrator (or insert any other creative profession)

how-to-be-an-illustrator_thefrancofly.com_jessie-kanelos-weinerCongratulations! You have an ounce of artistic talent and you want to take it to the next level. I was there too not too long ago with a head full of ideas but no actual sense of how to make it happen. How do you move beyond the clichés of being an artist (a sun-filled studio with oversized windows, watercolor stained shirt sleeves, champagne ambitions & lentil budgets) and into the pragmatic building blocks of a creative career? Working for oneself never really grants concrete moments of introspection or a boss to ask how it’s going. But on the occasion of publishing my second book stateside Paris in Stride: An Insider’s Walking Guide (Rizzoli March 27th), I compiled a list of a few pointers that helped me build a successful career as an illustrator, but these can easily be applied to writing, painting, photography, you name it.  This isn’t a proven method as I still waste most of the day staring out the window and counting down the minutes to lunchtime. But these are some tips I hold close to my heart and still remind myself of from time to time….

create everyday_Jessie Kanelos

Draw everyday. If you want to be an illustrator, then do everything in your power to create the time and space to do that. This is classic, art school bang-your-head-on-the-wall advice, but improvement only comes from daily practice.


Where do I start? Just look around you. When I moved to Paris indefinitely, I already knew how to draw more or less but was still stumped about what to draw. But being vulnerable in a new surrounding meant I was constantly drafting stories in my head about being an expat (hello, phone book of paperwork!), finding my place in an often bizarre country (why was the cheese platter the only thing that spoke to me at French house parties?) and adopting daily French customs into my daily life (French breakfast, American waistline). Putting a story with a visual was the ultimate catalyst for creating engaging illustrations and a selling point when contacting art directors.

Understand the market. Look at your work on screens big and small. Can it be understood on an Instagram feed? Does it stand out in a sea of fleeting attention spans? Since we are all saturated with photos 24/7, think about what can’t be photographed and start drawing that. Additionally a few years back, I noticed news sites incorporating gifs on their home pages. I started developing my own technique and it’s become a vital asset in my portfolio. side-hustle_Jessie-Kanelos-Weiner

Let’s be honest. Most artists may never make a living doing what they love to do. After 6 years of working as a freelance illustrator and food stylist (my side hustle), I’m finally making a living just as an illustrator alone. Food styling taught me a lot about time management, building a composition, meeting client expectations in a microscopic work environment and jump started my creative professional network. All La Vie Bohème fantasies aside, a living must be made. Find another professional activity that allows you the time and resources to improve your craft and the backup stability during the unstable early days of freelancing.

Publish often. Having trouble creating everyday? Give yourself a deadline of how often you want to share work and stick with the schedule. Write a little bit about it and the process in making it. It helps connect yourself to other creative people and is a good exercise in talking about your work before professional appointments. Still stuck finding inspiration? Be your own art director and assign yourself a dream project (say, a fig scarf for Hermès. I’m still working on that one). It puts into perspective client demands, brand identity, developing your own artistic angle and communicates with the world the kind of work you would like to make.

Go out. I’m not trying to make myself seem special here, but not everyone “gets” what it’s like being an artist. No, it’s not about the occasional cheese cube & champagne flute proud moments of an opening or book launch. But it’s the nitty-gritty of working through instability, daily rejection and all the little things that make this a mostly impossible career choice. But being surrounded by other creative people gives you the nourishment, validation and brainstorming face time to push ideas forward. It’s no coincidence that artistic movements happen in big cities when artists are sitting around in cafés and avoiding the work they should be doing.

stay curious_thefrancofly_jessie kanelos weiner

Be a master in your domain. Immerse yourself in your passions even if they aren’t directly related to your artistic practice. Love food? Take cooking classes and learn how to write recipes. It improves your understanding of the subject and can open up opportunities in the future for maybe writing your own cookbook and being the sole author of a project.

be kind to yourselfBe nice. My best metaphor for being a freelance artist is blowing up a bunch of balloons and trying to keep them all in the air at the same time. Sometimes one will fall to the ground, but hopefully there’s a steady rhythm of keeping them all afloat while also having the foresight to blow up a few ones along the way. It can be an exhausting process being an artist, but it’s also crazily dynamic and the pay-off is ultimately up to you. But it’s essential to be kind to yourself and others, know your limits, carve out time to feed that creative spirit and just be patient.

Tip speed round: always keep a stock of postcards, thank you cards and business cards on hand (sometimes an old-fashioned method has the greatest impact for getting seen), don’t spend too much time looking at the work of others, hire an accountant when you have the means, be frugal, trust your gut when working with new people, buy this book, don’t work for free, reach out to artists you admire on social media (you never know how they can help you out and vice-versa) and be generous with young artists.

Good luck, my friend! It’s a long, meandering road to becoming an illustrator or pursuing anything beyond the realm of the 9-5. But if you’ve found that creative light switch, that borderline spiritual urge to take an idea to its fruition, then do a little everyday and see for yourself.  -jkw

Have a specific question? Tweet me at @thefrancofly.

Preorder my forthcoming book Paris in Stride here.




Valentines for Francophiles!

1 You're A real Eiffel_Jessie Kanelos Weiner_thefrancofly.com2 Boeuf Bourguignon_Jessie Kanelos Weiner_thefrancofly.com3 I louvre you_Jessie Kanelos Weiner_thefrancofly.com4 sole mates_Jessie Kanelos Weiner_thefrancofly.com5 JE VOIS LA VIE EN ROSE_JESSIE Kanelos Weiner_thefrancofly.com7 Baguette_Jessie Kanelos Weiner_thefrancofly.com6 Pompidou be mine_Jessie Kanelos

A collection of Valentine’s Day cards for the franco-fiend in your life: the gourmand, the “summer water” drinker, the Paris Fashion Week stalker, the home cook who loves Julia Child as much as Marvin Gaye, the contemporary art snob. I’ve got you covered.

preorder my book here_Paris in Stride

Need a little Parisian pick-me-up?  Preorder my book Paris in Stride. Lauren Collins, author of When in French and staff writer at The New Yorker says “it’s like your fantasy BFF crossed with Google Maps.” And all the cobblestoned streets, corner bistros and architectural wonders are gorgeously illustrated in breathtaking watercolor with a healthy dose of whimsy. It’s the book to make a Francophile’s heart sing or IOU Valentine’s Day gift. Preorder here.


© Virginie Perocheau

Just in time for the ho-ho-ho and mistletoe, I just launched a shiny new eshop ready for the holiday rush.

© Virginie Perocheau

It includes prints of some of my favorite illustrations, ready to frame and hang.

© Virginie Perocheau

All prints are lovingly hand-signed in watercolor in my studio in Paris and wrapped in recyclable packaging with a few special touches added to each order.

© Virginie Perocheau

Add a little joie-de-vivre to your holiday season with the gift of watercolor.

Discover the collection HERE.

Photos ©Virginie Perocheau


Save the date: If you prefer to purchase in person, I’ll be signing books, selling prints from my shop along with other holiday treats at the Vente de Noël / Christmas Sale at the storied artist studios, Usine Chapal in Montreuil. Over 20+ artists will be selling their creations, too.

December 2-3rd from 11am-7pm

Opening vernissage December 1st from 18h….

2 rue Marcelin Berthelot 93100 Montreuil.


More info here.