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Louise and Jim have relocated to the South Coast of England, just outside Rye in East Sussex. We have been bowled over by the wildlife here already, we have badgers, foxes, rabbits, stoats, even ravens passing through our garden. Gardening is a key part of our work, as it informs Louise’s millinery, and Jim’s illustrations. Our aim over the next five years is to create a garden that offers diverse habitats for invertebrates, amphibians and birds, and record what we find.

We will keep you updated on our progress. Been a very busy few months.

The charity Booktrust have asked 26 illustrators to draw/paint/scribble something on a postcard to raise money for their ongoing work to help children develop their love of reading all across the UK. Here is my effort! If you’d like to see the wonderful works by illustrators such as Levi Pinfold and Alex T. Smith, or indeed if you’d like to bid on these works of art then click here after 6pm today. It’s for a good cause!

I also painted on the reverse of my postcard, just in case you wanted to send it to someone, I even painted a stamp for you.

I’ve done some scribbles in a box-set of the first three illustrated Harry Potter books, to raise money for ‘Breast Unit Events‘, started by Kate Butler and Susie Coleman in 2014, to help fund the Worcestershire Breast Unit Haven (Charity No. 1171155). The Unit gives support to sufferers of breast cancer.

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So here is a crayon drawing of Hagrid, in the other books I’ve drawn an Owl and the head of a Hippogryph. You can see the books and bid for them on this link !

Later in the year I will be doing lots of doodling in a deluxe edition of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, in case that interests you. I’ll give you the details nearer the date.

Any support you can give to Breast Unit Events would be greatly appreciated. Kate was a dear friend of ours and sadly we lost her to breast cancer in Autumn 2018. Please give what you can. We miss you Kate x.

Dumbledore_Goblet.jpgIt took a while but Goblet is in the bag; four down, three to go. As usual there are things that didn’t make the book that I really wanted to. It’s the curse of every illustrator that a book is never finished, you just run out of time. I’ve been out and about researching for the Order of the Phoenix last week, with trips to Great Dixter and Ightham Mote in the South of England. Have a look! (Ightham Mote). I’m going to try and make the next book a bit more ‘me’. It’s been a huge strain working outside my comfort range for the last six years, so hopefully I will get the courage to be a bit more expressive and push the visuals in a darker direction. I think it would suit the text.

I’d forgotten just how rough a time Harry has in the Order, not a happy year by any stretch. It’s a bleak story to match our bleak times, perhaps. I’ll be glad to throw myself into this book, anything to avoid the news right now. Louise and I are on Instagram don’t forget, get on there and make recommendations about what you want to see in the forthcoming Order of the Phoenix book @creepy_scrawlers

Looks like we might be moving to the South Coast soon, by the way…..fingers crossed.

IMG_2166 2 This summer I traveled to the United States to visit the San Diego Comicon. I got to meet two other Potter illustrators, Brian Selznik (left) and Kazu Kibuishi (centre). We all went up on stage and gave a talk and panel together discussing our process of illustrating J.K. Rowling’s world. I got to spend the day with Brian and Kazu, and they are both such lovely people. We signed books for several hours after that, and met lots of Potter fans. I want to thank everyone that waited so patiently on a warm day in San Diego.

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This was my first Comicon, and it was an amazing experience. The atmosphere is just wonderful, everybody is in ‘fun’ mode, and there are so many fascinating events and demonstrations (I loved this prosthetic makeup demo). Also if you want to see original comic art from the past 50 years, this is a great place to visit. The highlight for me was meeting Richard Taylor from Weta Workshop, a hero of mine, and an exceptionally generous and friendly guy.

While in the States Louise and I visited San Francisco, and did events in Los Angeles, San Diego and New York. I have to say, the Americans are so incredibly welcoming and friendly. We really enjoyed our trip and have to thank Scholastic for looking after us so well. The art collections and Museums in California are jaw-dropping. Particularly the ethnographic collections. We spent a whole day in the Metropolitan Museum in New York. Louise and I loved the fashion exhibition. (good reference for the Yule Ball!)

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Thanks again for those that came to see me talk, we had a wonderful time. California is a beautiful State, with INCREDIBLE food, and dazzling wildlife. New York has changed beyond all recognition since I last visited. Still a crazy, wonderful place –  maybe next time we won’t visit in July – boy it was hot.

 

Harry Potter documentary on BBC 2 tonight at 9:00pm. I’m currently hiding in my studio, terrified. I’m worried I might pop up in it! Anyway, for all those fans of J.K. Rowling, it should be an interesting show. It certainly was fascinating being involved in the documentary, and they were a lovely team from the BBC, lead by Alice Rhodes. It’s in connection with the British Library exhibition, and of course celebrates 20 years since the-boy-from-the-cupboard-under-the-stairs first appeared in print. If you missed it I’m sure it will be on the BBC i-player. Keep on Pottering!

Jim Kay

We are pleased to announce that Jim Kay’s illustrated version of Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban is available in the shops. This is the third in the Potter series to be illustrated by Jim, who is already busy working on the Goblet of Fire, which is due for release in 2019.