Saturday, 25 January 2014


May this be our inspiration forever more

From the boy who is forever 11


Wednesday, 22 January 2014

Ok, so I'm a bit late posting this...

But it's a piece of advice that should be a mantra; Grayson Perry said it in relation to choosing a career in the art world - I think it applies to Life.

"..stay on the bus. For god's sake, stay on the bus!"

(Or perhaps in his case, "stay on the bike..."?)

Clever, witty, of the people, philosopher, cyclist, artist.
Hear his Reith Lectures here.
Nice work, Grayson.

Grayson Perry: The Annunciation of the Virgin Deal, 2012

Monday, 20 January 2014

Hold the date! 
We're proud to be part of magical Tales on Moon Lane half term programme.
Will post a reminder on Facebook and twitter nearer the time...

Friday, 17 January 2014

We're counting down now...
See more pictures, possums and add to the buzz HERE!
Pre-order your copy HERE!

Tuesday, 14 January 2014

A Possum's Tail - jacket

Out on 6th February! 
"A Possum's Tail follows Samuel Drew and his toy dog as they make their way to visit the possums at London Zoo. Disappointed that the possums are asleep, Samuel turns around and heads back the way he came, unwittingly surprising onlookers who notice that the possums have decided to follow him. Written in charming rhyming verse, children will delight in spotting the differences between street scapes as Samuel Drew walks to and from the zoo. A Possum's Tail is a humourous caper that beautifully illustrates the richness of cosmopolitan London."

Alex and I will be VERY excited to see this on the shelves - it's taken a long time to arrive! Huge thanks to wonderful Tate Publishing, who have done the most amazing job, this is the book we always imagined. And we have had so much support and encouragement along the way...we just need to spread the word now.

To that effect, we've set up A Possum's Tail facebook page (ahhh, facebook, that mixed blessing of useful tool where people like me feel like a tool…although I'm now quite addicted to finding funny/cute pics of possums and posting them) 

Do please go and LIKE! :)

And if you really do like the look of it, you can pre-order a copy online from Amazon or wait until Feb 6th for Tate or your local book shop!
Okido 27

Hey dudes, what's this groovy new issue of OkidO all about..?

Here's a clue:
"Help! It's the Hair Bear Bunch!"

The theme tune was an awesome mix of catchy melody, sticky lyrics and rocking beats...
Too cool for school, too hip to trip and too dope to mope, these dudes were like some kind of Scooby-Doo trinity of funk.

Thursday, 9 January 2014

"I only want to hold you, 
I don't want to tie your down or *fence you in the lines I might've drawn…"
(Looks Like Rain, Grateful Dead)

*Actually should be "fit" but I prefer "fence" and don't think these guys would mind the change.

A version of this song with Donna singing in it, was the version I've always loved best (even though she was traditionally a most unpopular addition to the band). Haunting and lyrical, I basked in its beautiful melancholy, writing self-pitying poetry in a flea-infested, Paris apartment many, many years ago. I find it's lost none of its charm. I can't say the same for the poems...

Find myself doing here what I so disliked on Facebook - ok, I get it now! 
These fish, which are a detail from son's art GCSE piece, are too good not to share. Plus at least I'm not showing-off to friends but to approximately 10 random strangers…and hey, I'm proud of my son. He causes us so much strife, but deep down he's struggling like the rest of us. I'm celebrating the positive here!
(Apologies to one dear friend who does follow blog - but know she'll understand.)
"Fish" part of GCSE art project by FD

Wednesday, 8 January 2014

Observer Review section Sunday January 5th 2014
Delighted to see this piece about the Naked Mole Rat - one of my most favourite critters!

My admiration only grows for this brilliant beastie and now it's won Science Magazine's vertebrate of the year.

Well done Naked Mole Rat!

Also proud that I'd written my essay on the NMR for JUMP! magazine - I think we'll be hearing a lot more about these Curious Creatures...

Tuesday, 7 January 2014

PS just when you think you've got it pegged, House of Cards twists into a new direction.
How deliciously capricious it is! Oh boy, I am in awe.

A sneaky peak at my poem in the new January Okido  
I posted this a while back but so, SO much more engaging with Alex Barrow's brilliant illustrations. 
Can you guess the theme of the next issue..? 
(It'll be a crazily 'hairy' ride…)

Kew Gardens night time walk - a mesmerising sensory and emotional mix. (Also very cold toes)

Strangely reminiscent of travelling at night in India; the smells and sounds and other-worldliness. (Even had shacks selling food and drinks…)

Monday, 6 January 2014

I am the light that soared

I am the light that soared
bursting from nothing into brilliant being!
When the dark sky wraps a thousand dreams
in a blanket of winking stars…there am I!

I am the brightness in heavenly streams
of consciousness 
I am in each particle that floats
and spins on moonbeams
I am the almost imperceptible warmth
that melts frost-spiked leaves.

The normality of variety
Life in all its random games,
The breadth and depth of thought
The expectation of experience
The journey ahead, around, above and beyond
each path you tread.

I sing exuberantly
in a voice that clears the shadows!
Poised, watching, sure.
I am the answer to silence,
I am the love that will endure.

I am ready, steady GO!
The ebb and flow
Of Hope, Potential.
I was and always will be
Playful, sparkling

GD January 2013
For S

Friday, 3 January 2014

Unbroken Chain by The Grateful Dead suits the mood.

BACKGROUND information...

My first picture book - called A Possum's Tail - is a collaboration with brilliant illustrator Alex Barrow and came out 6th February 2014. A second book called London Calls! is a whistle-stop tour of London, led by a Pearly grandma and her granddaughter. London Calls! came out on 4th September 2014 and is my second book with Alex Barrow. A Possum's Tail was nominated for the 2015 CILIP Kate Greenaway Medal.
Both books are by Tate Publishing.

Please see my CURRICULUM VITAE for more details & updates.

As well as writing children's books, for children's television and two award-winning children's magazines, I do both private and commercial art commissions, a selection of which you can see here.

The children's shoes are part of an ongoing series of "first shoes", including several cards commissioned by the Almanac Gallery.

Hand-drawn, bespoke invitations, announcements, portraits and menus, such as the examples here are also available upon request..

Any enquiries please email:


I've been a regular contributor to children's art and science magazine OKIDO since 2007. HAPPY 10th BIRTHDAY (WOW) beautiful Okido!

An Okido animated kids tv show, based on characters from the magazine is currently in production with Doodle/Squintopera The original adaptation of the show (co-created/adapted by myself, producer Ceri Barnes and Doodle Productions) was acquired by CBeebies. 52 x 11 minute episodes will be coming to a screen near you soon in 2015.......... . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .............................
N E W S F L A S H! MESSY GOES TO OKIDO Series TWO is now in production, following a super-successful 52 episode first series!



Cartoon Forum 2011 Okido booklet

Cartoon Forum 2011 Okido booklet
Okido Cartoon Forum 2011

Happy Birthday OKIDO!

Happy Birthday OKIDO!
Okido was 5 years old this issue...the wonderful art and science magazine for kids I've been lucky enough to have worked on for the past - 8 - years now