I am a writer and illustrator from Perth, Western Australia. My first three picturebooks will be published in 2019: ‘The Day We Built the Bridge’ (with Samantha Tidy; Midnight Sun Publishing, Feb 1st 2019); ‘Violet and Nothing’ (Fremantle Press, May 1st 2019); and ‘12 Days of Kindness’ (with Cori Brooke; New Frontier, Nov 2019). I have also illustrated another picturebook, ‘Footprints of Faith: The Life of Mary Ward’ as part of a national project commissioned by the Australian Loreto Schools Advisory Council.
I currently work as an academic adviser at a university, where I teach writing, design learning materials, and create digital content for YouTube and social media. I have a BA (Hons) and a PhD in English Literature — my thesis looked at the links between poetry, metaphor and synaesthesia in the early twentieth century — and I have taught creative writing, poetry, literature and academic writing at university.
In the past I have worked with young children, highschool kids, and university students, and I'm especially passionate about educating through creativity, multisensoriality, and the Arts. I am available for school and library visits, art or writing workshops (children and adults) and author/illustrator talks, and I love collaborating with other artists and educators — send me an email (firstname.lastname@example.org)!
AWARDS, EXHIBITIONS & PUBLICATIONS
2017: 'Silent Night, 1974' published in Westerly 'Crossings'
2016: 2nd Prize in the CYA Writing and Illustrating Competition, Aspiring: Picture Book, Primary School category
2015: Highly Commended in the ASA Ray Koppe Young Writers' Residency Award
2015-2018: Exhibited in various exhibitions at Paper Bird Children's Books & Arts
2015: Portfolio accepted on The Style File (view it here)
2015: 'Wentworth Falls' published in Australian Poetry Journal 4.2
2015: 'Out the Back' published in Writ Poetry Review, Issue 1
2009: Highly Commended, Town of Mosman Park Open Art Awards
2008: 'Ophelia' published in DotDotDash, Issue 1
2002: 1st Prize, Town of Mosman Park Youth Art Awards
2001: 2nd Prize, Town of Mosman Park Photography Awards
2001/2002: Iona Presentation College Prize for Art
My Favourite Things
I love picturebooks as much now as I did when I was a child. There is something in that magical interplay between words and images – between what is said and unsaid, what is real and imagined – that just doesn’t exist in any other form.
I’m attracted to picturebooks which take slightly difficult subjects and give them imagination, depth and ambiguity – I think children can understand a lot more than we give them credit for. Like Sendak, I see the parallels between picturebook and poem, in their immediacy, their visuality, and their unique way of capturing so much within so little.
THINGS I LOVE: musical words; poetic ideas; strangeness; characters who show you something you didn’t know about yourself; imaginary worlds; childhood comforts; creative ways of looking.
I am especially smitten with picturebook illustration — contemporary, vintage, Australian, international, classic, whimiscal ... my collection grows faster than I can find shelf space! I am drawn to illustration that surprises me, moves me, or causes me to catch my breath. I love detail, intricacy, rampant colour, delicate line, graphic simplicity. I don’t believe children's illustration needs to fit into a certain style or aesthetic, and I love illustrators who break the rules and push the boundaries of what we think picturebooks should be.