My Sister Has a Big Black Beard & Other Quirky Verses by Duncan Ball was a fantastic book to illustrate. It's really exciting to see it turned into a covers-and-pages book after being scribbles on scraps of paper for a long time, some of them blue! They travelled with me around the world last year. I read the manuscript (what a book is called before it's tidied up and put together between covers) in Canada and France, and started to draw in Kent.

Now that I can hold it in my hand I love the thickness of it and the way the pages flip and flop. The first thing I do with a book usually is to riffle the pages, listen to them slap, and see what they smell like. Actually, that's a funny but reasonable sentence..."seeing" what something smells like!

If you look at "On the drawing table" on this website you can find out more about what it was like doing the drawings.

The verses are definitely QUIRKY, and being a BIG challenge to illustrate made it one of my FAVOURITE books to do. One page was SO scary that...well, you'll have to see for yourself.

And the cover is EMBOSSED which means the splatters of orange are lumpy! It's my first EMBOSSED book, but not my first book with lumps; I had a rabbit who made quite a few of my books lumpy and bumpy by nibbling them around the edges.


Here's what it says on the back....