Another golden oldie!
The Magic Plate Stories was another book I illustrated back in prehistoric Britain! As part of my golden oldie week on Facebook I shared a video about this project. The video is included in this post too. And yes, I did that because my cat, Lois, destroyed a hard-drive with the only copies of the original illustrations on it! I wish he’d stop trying to emulate Batman. Children, hey, what can you do?
This was a wonderful, little book based around a collection of short stories involving a menagerie of animals. My favourite thing to draw. I’ve added some stills to this post from the video, which are a little wobbly, but I tried my best.
The Black and White Era
In those days I did quite a lot of black and white work – in ink too! I no longer work with pen and ink, because I found it a little restrictive and I wanted my style to be looser and more sketchy, which it is now. Having said that, I’d LOVE to illustrate a children’s book in black and white at some point, as it would give me the opportunity to find a new way to create that black and white look. That kind of illustration work is very popular in children’s fiction, mainly novels, so things like Horrid Henry, anything Roald Dahl and the Lemony Snicket books. There are hundreds more, of course, but I’ll run out of web space listing them.
Illustrations like this can make a huge difference and some children’s fiction rely on them so much that in some cases they have equal importance as the text. The Captain Underpants series and The Diary of a Wimpy Kid books being very good examples. They are so helpful to reluctant readers and encourage them to go on to read more complex, text driven story books.
See more videos on my Facebook page here.