'The place where inspiration hits the page running... A sketchbook to fail and reflect on my work and my process'

Friday, 10 July 2015

It's been a good year already

 Well 2015 has been busy already, with a few more bits planned for the rest of the year. I decided to go solo to Paris on the way through to Bologna for the children's book fair, which was incredible. It was a sketching trip for me and a test to see if I would enjoy it and get anything from it also...and I did. So meeting up with a friend of a friend and spending the evening with her. Drinking cocktails, chatting, laughing, walking, having dinner, seeing the sights at midnight, and drinking some more. What a treat! and in Paris! I spent one whole day traipsing the streets of Paris looking at art. It was just lovely, and tiring, but a real reboot to the senses. Les Cahiers Dessines at Halle ST Pierre. The YIA show in Bastille. The Picasso Museum was stunning, and just general arty goings on, along with a visit to the Shakespeare and Company Bookshop over the river.

Bologna was more than I imagined in an emotional way. I was tired after the close fitting flights and delicious late night eating and drinking of one night, but to see Monty and the Little Tiger team, and to get to know them all over dinner over two nights was so much fun. They looked after me, and I appreciated every ounce of my journey to Bologna. To see my work up among all the talented illustrators in the whole mammoth event that was the Bologna Children's Book Fair was so rewarding after always being shut off in my studio at home. To travel into the city for a few hours, to sketch, to have an Italian ice cream, to speak to the Italian bus driver who was so willing with his sign language, to have lunch with a beer, to have sun shine on my face in March and to get a little lost on the way home, finding the small streets and hidden gems. To end with a midnight feast in great company, to then get up a few hours later to start the journey home. It floored me for a week afterwards, but it was so worth it all. A memory I will repeat soon I hope. Maybe somewhere new, some other time.

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