Thursday, 13 March 2014

Meeting My Beloved and his Black Leather Gloves...


Despite my occasional moans about the early trains I have to catch, I do enjoy the March school visits season.  I love interacting with the children. The one big drawback to being an illustrator is that it is easy to spend far too long on your own in the house.


Before the days of school visits, when I worked as an editorial illustrator and in the early days of doing the children's books, I used to get a bit stir-crazy. Being an illustrator might sound glamorous, but mostly it's just day after day in four walls, with only a computer and a drawing desk for company. In fact, I first met John because I decided I needed to interact with the world, before I lost the power of speech! 

I'd not long moved to Sheffield, so didn't know many people and thought teaching at the local art college might be fun and help me make new friends. It was actually pretty scary to start with, but I muddled through and ended up lecturing for about 7 years, going from 1 day to 3 days a week. 


I taught all sorts - Printed Textiles (that's what my degree is in), Life Drawing, Print-making (a lot of learning as I went along), Photoshop (even more learning as I went along!) and, of course, Illustration. John and I shared an office and discovered we were living on the same side of Sheffield. I had to get 2 buses to the college, so John started giving me a lift home after work and the rest, as they say, is history. 

I think this is one of the first paintings I have of John, from those very early days in the 1990's. We'd not been married long:


We've been married for over 20 years now, so some of it is a bit hazy, but I do clearly remember fancying him in his black leather driving gloves, during those lifts home from the college!


I didn't used to keep a sketchbook as addictively in those days, so this is a much later sketch: the slightly older model, with a few more dints (don't tell him I said that, will you?).

5 comments:

theartofpuro said...

The illustrations are as always beautiful,but what I loved the most is the story about you too:)

MiataGrrl said...

Awwww. . . sweet! :-)

- Tina

Beliza Mendes said...

So sweet! Thank you for sharing your story! And your drawings are wonderful as usual! :)

Balaji Venugopal said...

This is such a readable post...and the sketches are pretty good too.
:-)

Sue Pownall said...

Love this post and the insight into your past.