I grew up in the countryside where there were always plenty of animals around to draw. I used to spend my time writing stories and turning them into tiny picture books. So creating visual narratives started at a very early age and has continued ever since.
It was my love of picture books that made me decide to do an MA in children’s book illustration. One of the picture books I created “A Mermaid on my Hand” was highly commended in the MacMillan children’s illustration competition. I am inspired by many things – folk art, European fairytales, Renaissance Florence but more than anything else children themselves including my own.
The inspiration for my MA dissertation came from the many sketchbooks I had filled with drawings of them growing up. The result was a very visual study called “The drawing of children of picture book age to be used for illustration and character development.” Most of my time is spent drawing, painting and creating stories, when I have time to spare I go to life drawing and enjoy art galleries, ballet, theatre and I read a lot (often history books).
Many years ago I started a continuing interest in the Bronte family and one of my most prized possessions is what is believed to be the dress worn by Charlotte Bronte’s bridesmaid in 1854. How I came to own it is another story I intend to write down one of these days.