I DO NOT LIKE BOOKS ANYMORE!

I made these two gifs to celebrate the publication of my fourth picture book, I DO NOT LIKE BOOKS ANYMORE! This is Natalie and Alphonse’s second adventure, following ALPHONSE, THAT IS NOT OK TO DO! and is all about what happens when Natalie starts learning to read, and how she and Alphonse manage to carry on enjoying books and stories in their own way.

I only started making gifs again a couple of months ago – you can find a few others on my Instagram. Alphonse in his fairy costume comes from a part of the book where he and Natalie dress up to play “stories they remembered or made up.”

If you’d like to know more about the book and how I made it, have a look at Walker Books’ Instagram which I took over for publication week. I also have a couple of events coming up soon, and am busy making window displays – this one was at Jaffe and Neale, a bookshop-cafe in Chipping Norton, and it will be moving to their Stow shop in a few weeks too.
Window dispaly

World Illustration Awards

I was amazed, and very happy, to hear that I DO NOT LIKE BOOKS ANYMORE! is shortlisted for the Association of Illustrators’ World Illustration Awards. Just being included in the exhibition at Somerset House is a bit too exciting.
Photo of I Do Not Like Books Anymore!It’s especially exciting as the book isn’t even out yet: Walker will publish I DO NOT LIKE BOOKS ANYMORE! on May 3rd and there’ll be a book launch at Gosh! on the 10th. This is Natalie and Alphonse’s second adventure, following ALPHONSE, THAT IS NOT OK TO DO! and I’ve just finished the artwork for their third escapade – so I’ve got to know these monsters very well.

I DO NOT LIKE BOOKS ANYMORE! is about what happens when Natalie struggles with learning to read – and how she and Alphonse find their own solution (involving an ambitious elephant and a caterpillar driving a truck). I’ll be sharing more about the book, especially on Instagram, in the run-up to publication.

The Girl with the Parrot on her Head – on stage!

I recently discovered that La Compagnie El Triciclo, based in Montpelier, have created a theatre production based on Peut-on mettre un loup dans un carton? (the French edition of The Girl with the Parrot on her Head, published by Albin Michel). Juliette Mouchonnat directs and acts in the show, which features tabletop puppets, shadow puppets, pop-ups and original music. I think it looks magic. I especially love the wolves at the end of this trailer:
It’s incredible to see someone else take my story and make something new from it, and something so creative and exciting. I don’t know if everyone who makes books sometimes imagines them being transformed into films, plays or tv but I do: strangely, I always thought that in my wildest dreams puppet theatre would be the best medium for The Girl with the Parrot on her Head.
The space station

 

I only wish I could go and see it! Or that it could come here… If you happen to be near Montpelier, there should be more performances from April 2018.

Many thanks to Cie. El Triciclo for permission to repost their pictures and trailer. Peut-on mettre un loup dans un carton? is available from Albin Michel.
Peut on mettre un loup dans un carton?

Once I was a child, sometimes I was a rabbit

Portraits of the artist as a young rabbitLast autumn the Shanghai International Children’s Book Fair (CCBF) invited me to make some pictures for the Chen Bochui Illustration exhibition. The theme of the exhibition was ‘Once I was a child’ and being short of time I decided to interpret this very simply. I did some doodling about my own childhood and the thing that kept coming up was RABBITS: toy rabbits, real rabbits, rabbits in books, drawing rabbits,being a rabbit, eating rabbit food… I really did like rabbits.

This screenprint shows the best of my several rabbit costumes, which was a turquoise towelling hoodie with foam ears sewn on by my mum. It felt quite strange and self-indulgent to make a character so directly based on myself.

I also made a print about playing rabbit football with my brother (no actual rabbits harmed – or involved – in the playing of this game) and the two were shown during the fair in November alongside work by over fifty illustrators from 13 countries – so it was lovely to hear my pictures had been given second prize!

All the pictures are now part of the collection of the Baoshan International Folk Art Museum: their website shows all the winning artwork and some information on the exhibition.