My blog is about writing and illustrating children's books which I have been doing since 1974. www.gillianmcclure.com has all my books. I also have another blog: www.paulcoltman.blogspot.com where I publish my father's poems.
It's exciting helping pupils produce their own published book. The Wishing Eel was done by Year 2 pupils at Fawcett Primary with sponsorship from Cambridge University Press. In this project I worked with the children on the story alongside artist, John Wiltshire, who was teaching them watercolour technique during a term's residency at the school.
With The Tale of Cleo and Monty, I worked for just one day with the pupils of Class 4 at Burrough Green Primary on the illustrations of this story. It had been written by a pupil after a day's workshop given by poet, Tony Mitten, prior to my visit. In the morning I encouraged the whole class to paint indoor and outdoor background scenes in watercolour and in the afternoon they did some very free and expressive character drawings of the cat and the mouse. The day had started with a discussion about page design when I'd shown some of my own picture book artwork. After my visit the teacher had to help Class 4 select and assemble their own images to fit the text.
The book was a Business and Enterprise project in association with Linton Village College and Cambridge University Press.
In so many picture books today, the illustrations are executed by adults in a child like way. This page from The Tale of Cleo and Monty could easily be mistaken for one of them but no - it's the real thing - genuine child art.