Sunday, July 27, 2014

Blog Tour


I have been the absolute worst. Really, the WORST with blogging now that work has been picking up. And let's get real, that blogger is dead. Been working lots regardless- now you just have to pay to see it. 

Ha, just playin, but I will be a bit better- If you have a facebook, I'm much more posty and accessible there (HERE) everywhere.

Also considering to just stop blogspot and head over tumblr as it seems everyone's there- what do you think? Here is my tumblr address: TUMBLR!


 on to more exciting things- the amazing illustrator extraordinaire, Chuck Groenink/Angel who hooked me up with amazing agent, Stephen B at Writer's house- has picked me to participate in this blog tour! Very exciting to do questionnaires and look into everyone's methods- miss that when out of art uni!

More importantly you need to check out Chuck's beautiful work here. Seriously beautiful.


1. What am I currently working on?
I am at this very moment I'm working on a book called The Little Gardener with 
Flying Eye Books (who I did Wild with). As I did with Wild, this is my little story as well- so it has been a very intense and focused project!

I am also working on a book with Abrams called Brilliant and with Walker Books called A Brave Bear. I was at first a bit nervous about interpreting a project that already had text- but I'm enjoying the creative process of spinning someone's words and ideas into images of my own. It's a union of two artists (we'll see if I feel so positive and poetic when I get deeper in), so pretty neat so far!


2. How does my work differ from others of its genre?
This is hard to say, as I'm still very green. Being original is not an original process- absorbing everything you find engaging and beautiful is important. You get the things you love, mash it around, and make something that is fresh and new. God that sounds so children's book illustrator. As if finding style is as easily explained as guacamole. It just happens, I have no idea.

3. Why do I write what I write?

Wild got very mixed reviews- some people found her to be quite the anarchist and applauded, some thought she was a heroine for girls (hate the gender segregation. Next time I'm going to have to do something more questionable. Book of eunuchs), others thought she was a terrible influence. It was written with none of these in mind! It was just a story about trying to better accept and tolerate others for who they are. I write what I write because explaining something in 32 pages for a child helps instil lessons I want to better understand and practice myself.

4. How does my individual writing/illustrating process work?

Some people work better with order, some work better with chaos. I am sadly the latter. Wish I could have a clean desk without chocolate wrappers and a calendar that is actually on the right month. I'm terrible. But I am always working somehow!

Step 1. Starts with a doodle- if I draw something of interest it becomes a recurring motif in my sketchbook. This evolves into a character, then a story. This is a natural process, you do the same thing with people watching or overhearing conversations. Art imitates life, so characters are taken from all kinds of people I overhear and remember. 

Step 2. Figuring out the story- this is a crazy self loathing time, and I'm never sure. Not much drawing at this stage, just trying to figure out the main message to get across in the undercurrents of everything I want to say.

Step 3. Storyboarding- This for me is the REAL effort- at least for me who has an Illustration degree- not an English one. With limited amount of pages (and my personal agenda for limited amount of text) it's almost like writing poetry. Drawings and pages set the pace, and it takes a while to get it right and make it all fit.

Step 4. Drawing! Loads and loads of sketching to get acquainted with a character. I think this is a long process to coax me into doing the finals which always freaks me out

Step 5. Finished pieces (with LOADS of editing and reviewing). Can't show you here sadly, but in a few months you'll see the fruits of this process ;)

5. Who are the two author/illustrators that you are passing the interview to?.
I'm going to pass to two ultimate, very refreshing book makers, Ben and LiamI feel very lucky to be working with such talent for Flying Eye Books- both bringing such a cool new vibe to Children’s books!

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Little Gardener

Gouache painting for a little bookie in the works 

Saturday, March 8, 2014

My Trip to √Čire

I'm such a flippin cheapskate.
I don't have a camera

and while I usually go out and buy an £8 disposable and pay the £5 processing with no remorse for the sparse 11 photos that do come out, I was a bit tight fisted and wary this time. So, needing to show off that I have traveled (hehe) I decided to take the cheap DIY route and sketch my meagre ventures in an A5 sketchbook.

So I present you my wonderful trip to Ireland- 
the town, Kilkenny in particular. 

This was a trip to shake me out of my usual monotony, but mainly to visit my very dear buddy Jude (though I sometimes/oftentimes call her 'Mere' in the drawings). She's been living there the past half year, so she knows her stuff- Irish traditional music, where to get good chocolate biscuit cake, and that bartenders need to pour Guinness from tap in two parts (to my impatience).

Love that girl,
 I'll definitely be visiting again for all the fresh air and happy-spirited folk.

 Anyways, I'll stop blabbing and hope you get the gist! 

Wednesday, December 11, 2013


It's freezing in Brighton (doesn't help when the heater's been off for a week)
but it makes me cheery knowing it's warm somewhere else :).

Home sweet Home.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013


Lookee ere what I went an dun.
Made with gouache and artist's own blood.

Happy Halloween!

Monday, October 28, 2013

Stone Age

I'm back in prehistoric times when it comes down to self-publicity and networking. 
For all you young'ns that use facebook, add me at my new art page here:

Monday, October 21, 2013

Ursa Major

Ooh what could this be for? 
New project in the works, lots of claw, lots of hair.

Friday, October 11, 2013

Oh snap,

This is the main reason I was gonna post, and totally forgot in the process of getting all my scans in. 
This was the final entry I sent in of  Wonka's choco room!

Click it (or better yet, right click view-in-new-tab it +zoom) for bigger, chocolatier fun!



My Aunty Sampie and Pops, circa 1974. Photo courtesy of my Grandpa David

Here's some tinkering I did for a Charlie and the Chocolate factory creation! 
I didn't get the illo job, but I had a great time dreaming up the characters that everyone has been so familiar with. I loved the original 70's movie depictions (though I promise, I love the book much much more), and tried to veer away from it- though retaining that warmth. Somehow an ugly scratchy 70's sweater fits, and the poor boy needs that acrylic warmth as watery cabbage soup doesn't do much filling up.

Also took in my Dad's rockin' pageboy haircut and angelic grin into reference!
 Love drawing that haircut, might have to save it for another project :).

Unsavoury characters

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Some ideas

Being home is great.
My head's unhinged;
 ready to catch bits of inspiration floating by.

Monday, August 12, 2013

Wild in the classroom

So I got to do a lil' Wild reading and character draw in my Mom's classroom, which was a blast. 
Actually didn't want to leave after the session, these kids were hilarious. 

I taught these kiddos how to draw Wild girl as well as a baby bear, and was so thrilled with how awesome all the drawings were in the end. I wish I had done a session like this BEFORE finishing up the book- it would've given me a whole lotta insight on how much I could have played with her character. Think some of these drawings are totally book-worthy (I'm not saying that to be nice or cute or supportive for young artists or anything, I'm saying this because I think there's some killer illustrative styles going on).

(how fricken fantastic is that last one, best for last)