Friday, 11 October 2013

Wigtown, Breaking the Spell and moving a hospital.

Hello! One month on and lots has been happening. It is now autumn, I have become addicted to the gym and it seems like everyone is launching a book or opening an exhibition, which is all lovely.

I have been travelling on lots of trains to draw for many hundreds of children, starting with The Spirit of Moray Festival which takes place in Elgin library. What a lovely library it is too. In my first session 109 P1s arrived en masse, and left an hour later as dinosaurs clutching signed books, hooray!

Then there was Wigtown. I have never been to Wigtown before and didn't really expect to be staying in the most beautiful country house hotel! It was another Miss Marple weekend and I loved it. Luckily for me, Lari Don was also there to tell stories from our amazing new book Breaking the Spell (Frances Lincoln). I roped her in to my 90 minute workshop and I enjoyed her event a lot. We even went for a 7am walk in the countryside in preparation for breakfast. We also may have been plotting over herbal tea...

Here are some photos from my Wigtown workshop. It was all about dinosaurs and monsters and I worked with some hugely creative and imaginative people, big and little.

talking utter nonsense

designing a monster in groups

I drew the tail, a child drew the rest

After the monsters were created, each group wrote a description of their monster and passed it to another group, who tried to draw the same monster from the written description. If that makes sense. Good results were achieved.

The beautifully produced Breaking the Spell.

Also keeping me off the streets and out of trouble has been my residency at the Sick Kids, which is now half way through unbelievably. Linda and I have been working on autumn themes, hanging out in the Drop-in Centre with Alex Salmond and a room full of TV cameras and journalists, encouraging poorly children to draw and write, and lots of other fun things!

In my studio I have been working on so many different things inspired by the Sick Kids visits, including finishing the large wall drawing that will be hung next to the pharmacy. It is the culmination of our call-out for ideas about how to move a hospital. Here is a wee snippet. I like that word.

Last thing...Walker Books have published a Book of Bedtime Stories (name of the book) in collaboration with Mumsnet and Gransnet and I illustrated one of them (the best one!). Here is Theo and his atlas.

I think that is enough for now. There has also been a lot of Christmas stuff going on but that can just jolly well wait for 2 months. See you!

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