(1957 - )
As a child. Born and raised in Wales, Charlotte says that book illustration is “the only thing I ever wanted to do” and she certainly has made a brilliant career of it. Skipping formal training in art, she studied art history at London University and worked at an art gallery before embarking on a freelance career in illustration.
As an adult. “I don’t know that I’m a funny person,” says author-illustrator Charlotte, “but it seems when I begin to draw that the characters change, and they take on this amusing and amused look.” Indeed, her illustrations are widely loved for this very quality of gentle wit, not to mention their quiet observation, airy exuberance and utter charm. Charlotte lives in Surrey, England, with her husband and two children.
As an artist. Among Charlotte’s most acclaimed picture books are Ginger, and its prequel, Ginger Finds a Home, which shows how the loving ministrations of a little girl transformed the title character from stray to pampered pet. “We had a cat who lived at the bottom of our garden,” Charlotte says of her inspiration for this story. “It was a great moment when he decided to come and live with us.”
Charlotte was personally selected by the nephew of the esteemed children’s book writer Eleanor Farjeon to illustrate the delightful classic, Elsie Piddock Skips in Her Sleep. More recently, Charlotte has written and illustrated Tweedle Dee Dee; Hello Twins, winner of the British Book Design and Production Award; and Pizza Kittens, a dinnertime comedy of errors that she says stems from personal experience. “Good manners are not acquired overnight,” she sighs. “The secret is to keep trying!”
The Collected Poems (2008)
Poems that really are poetry.