All my life, ideas have come to me at night, like small stones raining down on my head, leaving me sleepless and excited. In the day, I turn some of these ideas into projects that draw upon my two great loves: words and visuals. Children’s books provide the perfect outlet. For 20 years I have written and illustrated in paint, photographs (and embroidery threads!) books and materials to share with children.
My philosophy is to view children as I view all people: complex and savvy, capable of a whole lot more than people expect and perfectly able to sniff out the sentimental and false.
My work and concerns reflect where I find myself geographically. Although I was not born in South Africa, it is my home and its people, landscape, fauna and flora are the main source of my inspiration.
Many of my books reflect the harsh realities of the lives of the vast majority of South African children. The challenge is to do this authentically and honourably without resorting to sermons and simple ‘storybook’ solutions. It is a balancing act that keeps me on my toes.
There is this urge in me to break new ground – to mix genres, to explore hybrid illustration techniques, to tackle difficult subjects and to draw into the world of children’s books people and places that have not featured previously.
And now a new phase…after years of painting drought, I have begun again to find the bliss of making art. Not only painting but exhibiting too. Please look under the heading ‘Painting’ to see how this is shaping up.
Welcome to my web site.