Friday, March 21, 2014

Little Lou and the Woolly Mammoth

A lovely parcel from Bloomsbury arrived in the post today...
Beautifully wrapped and complete with a sweet little card from everyone, but what could it be!?

My new book!
Little Lou and the Woolly Mammoth, in hardback and paperback. I'm delighted :-) Might even bake a cake to celebrate.

Publishing on 8th May, available for preorder on Amazon.



Thursday, March 20, 2014

Dance

Being a big fan of jazz dancing (swing dance/'lindy hop') myself, I was delighted to listen to this short interview with one of my favourite illustrators, Shirley Hughes, talk about her love of dancing during WWII. BBC Radio 4 - A Last Excuse Me Dance

Sunday, March 02, 2014

The Book Hive



I went to see 'The Book Hive', in Bristol's central library this weekend. The library is celebrating it's 400 year anniversary, so there are 400 books to mark the occasion. It is an interactive installation, the books flap and tease you with their contents, before snapping shut. And then taking a peek again. Some were more shy than others, and some were more lively! Real characters :-) Created by 'Rusty Squid'.

Sticky Stories


Here's me reading one of my books at Sticky Stories this week. It was so nice to read to a crowd of little ones (and bigger ones!) Little Lou and the Woolly Mammoth seemed to go down very well too :-)

Tuesday, February 04, 2014

Sticky Stories








I'm very excited to have been invited to read my stories at 'Sticky Stories' in Bristol! I will be reading Scary Mary, What Goes Up, and the world premier of 'Little Lou and the Woolly Mammoth'.

The event is at Bristol's Create Centre, Hotwells, on Weds 26th Feb.


Monday, January 27, 2014

Has anyone seen a mammoth..?

I have! I spotted Little Lou and the Woolly Mammoth online, due to be published with Bloomsbury on 8th May. Super excited!
Here's the blurb...

Could a little girl and a GIANT woolly mammoth ever be friends?

When Little Lou finds a wriggly, squiggly piece of wool amongst a pile of toys, she curiously gives it a tug. But - what's this? The wool tugs back - there's something at the other end! And as Little Lou follows the wool, she realises that it's attached to . . . A giant woolly mammoth! Quick, RUN!

But soon the woolly mammoth gets snagged, and he starts to get smaller . . . And smaller . . . And smaller. In fact, he is so small that he doesn't really seem so scary anymore - he's just the right size for a cuddle!

A charming tale of fear, friendship and not judging a book by it's cover, beautifully illustrated by Paula Bowles.


Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Happy New Year!



Happy new year cyber world! I hope everyone had a jolly good time. I certainly did, if a little busy in between parties..

Here's something I worked on at the end of 2013. I worked at Nudge Digital for a few weeks, drawing buildings and rooms full of interesting things. It was top secret, but has just gone 'live' so I can share it with the world now...

www.cyberstreetwise.com

A slightly different style to how I usually work, but very happy with the results.

2014 has kicked off with a lot's more exciting things! But, as usual, top secret for a little while yet.. although, I can give some clues... I'm painting something to do with Gromit, something for the National Trust, and an audio-book! I'm so excited and all will be revealed soon :-)

Has anyone made any new year resolutions? I have some plans for 2014, including 'more adventures', in particular, some more long distance bicycle rides, and some more exploration of the UK. Since starting work on the National Trust project, I've been researching lots of different NT locations, venues and properties, and there are some beautiful ones out there! I really want to see the north of England, the Lake district, the Peak District, Cumbria, and Scotland and the Highlands.
Lake district
Derwent Water, Lake District
Image details | National Trust Images
Cragside, Northumberland


Friday, October 18, 2013

Creative block, or not?

A friend just sent me a link to this lovely article, about overcoming creative block and getting inspired! It's a good read...

How to break through your creative block...

I especially like these thoughts:

Alexi Murdoch:
"...At the risk of going off brief here, can I just ask: What’s wrong with creative block? Might it not just be that periods — even extended ones — of productive hiatus are essential mechanisms of gestation designed to help us attain higher standards in our pursuit of creative excellence?"

Douglas Rushkoff: 
"...Real creativity transcends time. If you are not producing work, then chances are you have fallen into the infinite space between the ticks of the clock where reality is created. Don’t let some capitalist taskmaster tell you otherwise — even if he happens to be in your own head".

James Lidell:
"...Some days the genius will be in you, and you will sail. Other days the lead will line the slippers, and you’ll be staring into the void of your so-called creative mind, feeling like a fraud. It’s all part of the big ole cycle of creativity, and it’s a healthy cycle at that.

Jessica Hagy:
"...How can you defeat the snarling goblins of creative block? With books, of course. Just grab one. It doesn’t matter what sort: science fiction, science fact, pornography (soft, hard, or merely squishy), comic books, textbooks, diaries (of people known or unknown), novels, telephone directories, religious texts — anything and everything will work.
Now, open it to a random page. Stare at a random sentence.
[…]
Every book holds the seed of a thousand stories. Every sentence can trigger an avalanche of ideas. Mix ideas across books: one thought from Aesop and one line from Chomsky, or a fragment from the IKEA catalog melded with a scrap of dialog from Kerouac".
I find it very reassuring that feelings of creative block is universal and curable!