Happy days and reasons to be cheerful, part one.

It has been a very busy time here; lots of lovely projects and illustration commissions have kept me busy, so please forgive me if I have not visited your blog. I will endeavour to catch up soon.

I started work on the dream commission mentioned in my last blog post. I have checked with the publisher and have permission to tell you about it, although it is a work in progress and a million things could go wrong. “There is many a slip twixt cup and lip” but so far so good. The publisher will be Long Barn Books, which is owned by Susan Hill, It is a dream commission for lots of reasons, firstly because I have greatly admired Susan's work for many years now and am thrilled to bits to be working with her. Secondly, she tells me to take as much time as I need, how amazing is that? Time is something I will need plenty of because I am working on what seems like an enormous piece of paper and I want to cover the sheet with lots of details. As you may guess from the photo, I am illustrating “The Owl and the Pussycat” and the result will hopefully be available as a limited edition poster if all goes well. I am touching wood and crossing my fingers as I type this.

At the weekend I went along to my bookbinding group and took part in a workshop run by Mark Walmsley , we had a whole day of play - sheer bliss. The workshop was on Suminigashi sometimes called “cloud art” or “ghost art” and paste papers. We all made a great deal of mess and came home with an array of decorated papers for future projects.

I’ve also been looking for ideas for Christmas presents and once again I have raided this shop run by a very busy town mouse. Continuing on the handmade theme I have been covering little diaries with bits of decorated papers that I have accumulated over the years. Marbled paper, Tyvek recycled from Fed Ex envelopes, bits of mono print and a lovely new material called “stone leaf” sent to me to try by this company.

And, last but not least, we have finally got our children’s book application - "The Bird with the Rainbow Tail" which I have mentioned before here, into the iPad/iTunes store. You can see it here, if you are lucky enough to own an iPad, sadly I don’t have one but I know a man who does.

I hope your weeks are happy and busy too.