Hello! My long blogging silence has been due, not to idleness on the artistic front, but to having FAR TOO MUCH to do - just the way I like it. First of all, I'm happy to say that this year I'll be working on a new book project with a wonderful Australian publisher... the details being secret at this time due to superstition, discretion and a desire to drive people mad with suspense... but all will be revealed when we get closer to publication. It will take about two years to get the book out, and I can't post any of the artwork, so for the rest of the year I plan to write wildly irrelevant poems and put them on the blog with pictures.
In celebration of the new project, I've rented a thoroughly Parisian share studio up in the top corner of the historical McCann's music building in town. The studio is a very well lit room actually containing the gold dome (our kitchen!) with its porthole opening onto a fabulous view of snow-covered Mt Wellington. From the other windows, I can see everything happening up and down Elizabeth and Melville Streets - just perfect for a children's book illustrator. It's also freezing, which completes the Parisian garret feel and is what we artists deserve for not getting a real job. My fellow renter is Yolanda Zarins, who brightens my workdays with her beautiful textile art and habit of bringing in bits of vegetation, not to mention milk for our tea. We have a birds' eye view of people smoking on the roof of the nearby multilevel carpark, laundry hanging on rooftops and in back alleys, fire engines, parking inspectors - hang on, that's MY car...
In honour of my ascension to such heights, here's a poem about an unfortunate young woman.
Selina Potts was so polite
That everything she said was trite.
She climbed a steeple with a bell
Got tangled in a rope, and fell.
Her last words (heard above the chime)
Were: 'Golly gosh, is that the time?'
You can see that, although she is plummeting alarmingly, Selina's expression remains fairly dispassionate and her dress is quite tidy. A model child.