Originally from London, I spent 15 years living far, far away, mostly in magical New Zealand (and Australia), where many of my wildest dreams came true.
There I created the illustrations for my first six children’s picture books…
My first book~baby, ‘The Wonky Donkey’, born in 2009 (about a lovable three~legged ass with one eye and a flatulence issue), became a run~away success, and I haven’t stopped illustrating children’s books since!
I also teach workshops & classes in drawing and creative self~expression, inspired by breaking through and befriending my own creative blocks.
I have taught in New Zealand, Australia, Holland and UK.
Creative Play, Surrender and Magic…
Playfulness is a very important part of my creative process, as well as singing my heart out as I birth my book characters into being.
When it comes to creating I don’t always know what is going to spill out on the page, especially when I am creating my personal works and journals… I surrender, allow and see what comes out, more like an observer or a midwife. This makes the process truly magical.
It can feel like there is something ‘more than me’ at work, and I love simply following the urge to pick up my pen or pencil and seeing what emerges on the page.
In 2014, England unexpectedly reclaimed me, after having been shaken out of my dream life in NZ by a big earthquake in 2011 which shook Christchurch, where I lived, to the ground. After spending the following 3 years in Australia, I returned to the UK (supposedly en~route back to NZ!) and I am now happily settled in Devon, where I birthed my 7th book~baby, and am delighting in offering workshops in the northern hemisphere.
Then to Now…
After fumbling and daydreaming my way through my school years as a spotty, horribly insecure teenager with a string of low grades and failed exams, I left the grips of the education system, believing I was a total failure…
…What a delight it now is to transform my day~dreams into reality, birthing children’s book characters for a living and sharing playful inspirationals to others who may have forgotten or mistrusted their own creative magic…
I feel truly blessed.
From unprecedented successes to unexpected natural disasters, I have certainly learned along the way to always expect the unexpected, and never say never.
So it is a delight to bring these works of Heart to you and share them here.
Happy ambling along the pathways of my creations…
May we never forget the magic within us!
Awards & notable bookly recognitions:
◇ WINNER 2010 NZ Post Children’s Choice award
◇ WINNER 2010 Nielsen Booksellers’ Choice Award
◇ Finalist 2010 NZ Post Picture Book category
◇ Finalist PANZ Book Design Awards
◇ Finalist LIANZA Russell Clark Award for Illustration
Press and Articles – click titles to view
Guardian newspaper article:
The Wonky Donkey: viral video of grandmother makes picture book a bestseller
The full package of telling a good story