Monday, 17 October 2011


Oh dear, I have been slacking recently. After the long summer holidays I have never quite got back into the swing of extracting a couple of decent hours of drawing in the evening once the kids are in bed. And life is full of playgroups and playdates and fishfingers and exhausting bedtimes. I'm still helping out with all the ptfa stuff so here at least is my latest offering... fancy coming??

Friday, 23 September 2011

Your school needs you...

So this year I thought I'd volunteer to get involved more with the school ptfa which is undergoing a much-needed overhaul. This is a poster I've designed to try and get parents involved (though it's very early days and everything has yet to be approved (and, in the usual way of these things, the politics are in full force)). Anyway, whether or not it sees the light of day, I quite like it and thought I'd pop it on here!

Wednesday, 21 September 2011


I've been faffing around recently, what with back to school and doing some design stuff for PTFA, so there's nothing going on the drawing front. However, I have become a little obsessed by the hipstamatic app on the iphone and thought I'd share some of my recent pics.... 

St Pauls from Tate Modern

looking down from the cafe

 In our house 'Neo' is to an aeroplane what a choo choo is to a train. Neo spotting is a favourite pastime so I took this pic for Laurie, but also love the colours too

Bankside in the pouring rain

My little gap-toothed Harry Potter

Baby growing up so fast

Gilbert and the weird looking flower

They adore each other (in between the wind-ups)

My only fellow female in a male-dominated house

Saturday, 3 September 2011


received my copies from Amazon of the two Peter Andre books which came out on the first of Sep. Still waiting for a copy from the publisher though! Here's Peter talking about the books on Ladybird's blog...

Thursday, 1 September 2011

Illustration Friday - 'Disguise'

Very rushed and last minute... suddenly remembered a photo of my brother taken in 1980 that provided some inspiration, so here's the hurried drawing and the photo. My grandma made the costume by the way (I was wonderwoman - that'll be another post I think - did I love that costume!) xk

Monday, 29 August 2011


Apologies for scarcity of postings recently - summer holidays and all that.  Very few spare seconds, absolutely no illustration or design achieved but quite a few trips to the beach, legoland survival story, some post-riot fun in London,  several visits to our latest favourite cafe at the Staverton Bridge Nursery (you can see the choo choos and Sam has discovered a liking for loose-leaf tea) one barbeque on a glorious evening, and one barbeque in the pouring rain.

All that apart, I have also decided that I'm going to build myself a proper website and have been trawling through 'Dreamweaver for Dummies' attempting to work out how to go about it. A complete beginner, I now at least know what HTML and CSS stand for. There are many mind-numbing chapters ahead though... I thought I might document progress here. So far all I've done is very rough sketches of how I'd like my homepage to look. I was about to scan in these sketches when I carelessly left my sketchbook within reach of the crayola crowd and you might find it hard to see but basically I'd like my homepage to be a picture of me, sat on the sofa with a book, a cat and a cuppa with little icons that change shape as you hover over them indicating where to go for portfolio/blog/contact stuff etc...

What I'm interested in finding out is, can you add cut out images onto a webpage? So what I'd like to do is have some wallpaper as a background and, for example, put a phone on the coffee table which will sit over it and 'ring' when I hover over it. Is this beyond me? Impossible? I have no idea. I drift off every time I start reading the book.... here are some summer pics to make up for boringness...

Tuesday, 9 August 2011

Books we love (No.9) - Are You Awake? by Sophie Blackhall

I've just discovered Sophie Blackhall (blog here) and am totally in love with her new book, Are You Awake? It strikes a chord to any parent who, bleary eyed in the middle of the night, has been bombarded with question after question from a wide awake toddler and it reminds me so much of Sam when we first moved to New York, jet-lagged and wide awake at 3am, looking in amazement out of the window at all the lights.

Tuesday, 2 August 2011

My boys, by Amy Chudley

I'm so excited. Today, my talented friend Amy Chudley delivered the portrait she has painted of my boys. I can't stop looking at it - she's really captured their characters. Check out her website here and her facebook page here. Thankyou so much Amy!

Monday, 1 August 2011

Enormouse and Missed Connections

Sorry so quiet recently... we've all been poorly - you know how it goes with kids - one after the other and then just as they start to get better - you come down. Anyway, I've not been doing anything much more creative than picking up tissues and dishing out antibiotics but I have discovered that a friend who I worked with many moons ago has just had her first picture book published! I'm so excited for her and my copy is en-route from Amazon. It looks great! Check it out here. Congratulations Becs!!!

Something else I've recently discovered is Sophie Blackall, Brooklyn illustrator's blog, Missed Connections. Having over 3000 (!) followers I'm obviously discovering her pretty late in the day but I'm really enjoying catching up. I think her new book is being published in September.

Wednesday, 20 July 2011

Peter Andre Books

just checked the ladybird website and one of the books I illustrated for Peter Andre is up so I guess I'm allowed to show it on here now...

Tuesday, 12 July 2011

Illustration Friday - 'Stay'

I'm such a procrastinator - I need a deadline or homework to get me going so I've decided to start doing illustration friday each week. Bit of a cheat this week as this spread from Cat, I Can Say That seemed to fit the topic. Now I've got to work out how to link it to their website....

Thursday, 7 July 2011

The day job

It's been a little while since I posted and I've been looking at all the lovely creative things people are doing and having lots of ideas for things and wishing for more hours in the day. Not that I'm complaining really - I'm gainfully employed designing a Ben and Holly sticker book and how can I ask for more - a day job that I can do from my spare room AND still do the school run and make it to school sports day and take my little one to playgroup? I squeeze hours of one thing around hours of the main day job which is Mummy work. The main casualty is the housework but I can live with that! I appreciate how lucky I am, yet still pine for an extra hour or two that I could luxuriousy spend on sketching out ideas (how about a boy with super-human sense of smell, developed due to his very large nostrils which themselves have resulted from dedicated hours of nose picking? (As you can see I get a lot of inspiration from the boys)). Anyway, here's a spread from my latest job, just to prove I'm not idling the hours away picking my nose...

Monday, 27 June 2011

Books we love (No.8) - Pip and Posy stories

Two lovely new books from Nosy Crow, illustrated by the fantastic Axel Scheffler. Appealing stories about the big events in in a toddler's life -  such as the difficulties of sharing a scooter, how sometimes accidents happen, and how friends look after each other.  The text is beautifully simple with just the right smattering of 'Oh no!'s and 'Oh dear!'s and 'Hooray!''s to join in with, and the illustrations are good enough to eat. For Laurie, who's nearly two now (where did that time go?), theres a perfect balance between a simple story which is easy to follow and pictures with plenty going on so he can point out lots of things.  BTW If this sounds a bit more 'reviewy' than normal, that's because I'm going to put this up on Amazon too, and thought I'd write it only once as I really should be getting on with my Peppa Pig and Little Kingdom books... procrastinating as usual!

Thursday, 23 June 2011

Tigerprint entry

Hi, here's my entry for the latest Tigerprint competition. The brief is for a 'yummy mummy' mother's day card...

Saturday, 18 June 2011

Mysterious project...

Well, I guess I'm allowed to blog about it now because it's appeared in the bookseller. This is the project that kept me up working until the wee hours for six weeks. I'm a teeny bit miffed that my name is missing from the article (bearing in mind the massive effort required for illustrating two 24pp books in six weeks) but that's the lot of an unknown illustrator I guess. I'm hoping that when they're published in September, I'll be a little bit less unknown, and that it might bring a little more work my way!
I know this is it bit dated, but i'm of the age where Peter Andre will always be synonymous with Mysterious Girl. This was the year I met my husband, and he had curtains like this!!

Friday, 10 June 2011

I love a good craft fair...

...and I've just come back from the Bovey Tracey Contemporary Craft Fair which is on all weekend.
Despite not having much of a budget I did manage to buy some lovely ceramic coasters from Chris Barnes which at 4 for £10 I think is pretty good. And I spent a good while lusting after a curvaceous Penwith side table made by Sam Walsh. That one's going to have to wait until I've won the lottery though.

Thursday, 9 June 2011


My dad is a bit of a 'keen' photographer and whilst we all roll our eyeballs at family events when he starts clicking away, I am always appreciative of the flood of nice photos that come my way afterwards. He's also been scanning a lot of photos from my childhood and a project I'm chewing over at the moment is using some of these as inspiration for a series of illustrations, using some great fabrics and textures from the 70s. Here are a few samples of the inspiration...

Sunday, 5 June 2011

Books we love (No.7) - What The Ladybird Heard

Just lovely! Farm animal noises, baddies stepping in cowpats, and a nee-nah. My one-year-old asks for it every night.

Thursday, 2 June 2011

Happy Fish

Here's my latest aquisition from the talented screens of Jane Foster. I'm addicted to her prints - they make me happy, like these fish, which are going to look great in my new very green bathroom. You can buy them here...

Tuesday, 31 May 2011

cats from the archive

Having a break from anything arty in the wake of job ending and finally the end of stomach bug. It's half term and I'm spending time with the boys and time in the garden. So while I'm on the theme, here are some cat pictures from yesteryear (well, probably 2003 and 2005). The question is, do you prefer the painted or the computerfied? In which direction should I develop my style as I turn into a 'proper' illustrator?

Wednesday, 25 May 2011

There's light at the end of the tunnel...

Head down working on the mystery project for the last five weeks and I'm so nearly there. Not been helped by a stomach virus sweeping through the whole family this week and last (grandparents and aunties and cousins and friends included). Hopefully, I'll be able to blog about the book very soon but in the meantime here are some sketches of one of the characters - a family cat that appears on every page. So much of the book is children and more children, with those tricky fingers and toes, that drawing the cats felt like a little holiday. As a girl I drew cats constantly so there is something quite soothing about scribbling feline sweeps and curves. These cats were subsequently scanned in and worked up in photoshop... hopefully I'll be able to reveal very soon. xKath