Children’s literature


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There are many many moments in a creative person’s life, where you produce a piece of artwork with a deadline looming and you then just want to tear your hair out. I did this recently with the book cover illustration  the second of Fiona Ingram’s series. in the first book […]

How I wanted to put Excalibur through my book cover ...


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James Mayhew posted a link on facebook to a page on the website Illustration Cupboard, where some of Jan Peinkowski’s illustrations are for sale. It was like stepping into a time machine and being whisked back to my childhood. My reading life took off the day I picked up my […]

Advent Challenge 20 – Joan Aiken and friends


Today’s artist is Catherine Rayner. I admire her wonderful painterly style and how her animal characters are such individuals. Her bio from her website: Award winning author and illustrator Catherine Rayner studied Illustration at Edinburgh College of art. She fell in love with the city and still lives there with […]

Advent Challenge 12 – Catherine Rayner



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James Mayhew is author and illustrator. He is famous for the Katie books and the Ella Bella books, both series introducing young readers to fine art, ballet, and museums. His list on amazon runs to three pages of interesting reads for the young. How he describes himself: He is well-known […]

Advent Challenge 10 – James Mayhew


In our family, guinea pigs are known as Pinny gigs, because we all love spoonerisms and we think it suits them. Even if you are not a rodent fan, you will LOVE the pinny-gigs drawn by Holly Surplice. They dance, play musical instruments, have parties and get carried away by […]

Advent Challenge 9 – Holly Surplice


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In an earlier post I described the team of tiny netball players who named themselves “the Wicked Witches”. One of the team members just happens to be the daughter of a preparatory school librarian. Her mother is one of those people whose looks belie their character. She LOOKS like a librarian. […]

The Library Witch



Once again, I found it hard to resist the challenge set by The Book Sniffer. This doodle was created in response to a poem written by GilesPaley-Phillips.  Read the full poem by clicking on the Book Sniffer link above. What I love about it  is the scale  – tiny mouse: […]

Very hungry mouse



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Actually, the person I am writing about is beautiful, talented, intelligent, has the most generous spirit and the quirkiest sense of humour, so of course when I have moments of self-doubt and stress it makes her just annoying (not really)! Simone Matias blew into our lives as an au pair. […]

Some people are just annoying (and totally wonderful)



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It is well-known that if a man is assertive, he is seen as powerful, but if a woman is assertive she is characterised as a bwitch.  It seems that despite centuries of progress, deep down there is this little seed of fear planted in all men that wishes for a […]

Being a dragon