Friday, March 27, 2009

Charity Auction of White Vase on Damask Still Life

The Wrong Way Round is a Charity fundraising trip being undertaken by my good friend and brother-in-law, Stephen McCready and Alan Johnston, his business partner, to raise money for the Fields of Life Charity to build a school in Uganda for underprivileged Ugandan Children.
My Still-life painting will be auctioned as part of their 'Spanish Night’ fundraiser at TAPS 2, Cotton Court, Belfast on Monday 30th March 2009.
Do come along if you are in Belfast on Monday night. I am hoping to be there and I know that there will be great entertainment from Aidan (the man in the purple suit) and Mayte, and others.
If you want to put a bid in for the painting contact Katrina on 02890 427000 or email

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Enter the DAA Children's Short Story Competition

Here is a chance for one of you younger budding writers out there to match your storytelling talents to my illustration work.
The Dublin Airport Authority, who sponsor the Irish Book Awards, asked me to do a picture which contains all sorts of fantasy elements for their Children's Short Story Competition
I had a lot of fun with this one, using digital and traditional techniques and bringing in various bizarre characters that I hope might tickle your imaginations.
All you have to do is write a short story, in not more than 250 words, based on the themes suggested by my painting.
Come on! Download an entry form here, and let your imaginative juices flow.

The two winning entrants will receive all eight titles shortlisted for the Award and will be invited to join a panel of expert judges who will decide the winners of the Dublin Airport Authority Children’s Books of the Year Award for 2009. A donation will also be made to the school libraries of the winning entrants.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Still Life of Flowers in a Glass Vase

I haven't put any pictures up for a while.
Here is a still life study that is typical of the type of practice piece I do to keep my observational skills up to scratch.
I have to say I would always prefer to draw a portrait or a figure study, but sometimes it's tricky to get anyone to model, and there is something nice about drawing a still life and knowing that your subject is going to stay still for as long as you need it to do so.

Friday, March 13, 2009

iBbY Ireland announces their nominees for iBbY’s Hans Christian Andersen Awards 2010

Thanks to everyone who congratulated me for getting on to the Bisto shortlist.
I can also announce that iBbY Ireland have once again honoured me with their nomination for the Hans Christian Andersen Awards. I am nominated for the Illustration award, and Eoin Colfer is nominated for the Authors' prize.
I am very chuffed to be put forward for this prize by iBbY Ireland as it really is the most prestigious award in the world of children's books, and just to be nominated is a very big deal indeed for me.
My old pal Anthony Browne won it recently for the UK, and of course we are hoping that Eoin can follow in the footsteps of the great Martin Waddell, who won the writers' prize in 2004 representing Ireland.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Bisto Book of the Year Shortlist Announced

The Bisto Awards shortlist has been announced and I am on there, for my illustrations to The Gift of the Magi.
It's great to be short-listed, and I'm really pleased for my Walker Books stable mate Mary Finn with Anila’s Journey, which I think is her first book.

Airman - Eoin Colfer (Puffin)
An Phleist Mhór - Ré O’Laighléis, Susan Edwards & Emily Colenso (Móinin)
Anila’s Journey - Mary Finn (Walker)
Bog Child - Siobhan Dowd (David Fickling)
Brionglóidí - Áine Ní Ghlinn & Carol Betera (Cló Mhaigh Eo)
Creature of the Night - Kate Thompson (The Bodley Head)
Her Mother’s Face - Roddy Doyle (Scholastic Books)
Highway Robbery - Kate Thompson (The Bodley Head)
The Gift of the Magi Illustrated - PJ Lynch (Walker Books)
The Great Paper Caper - Oliver Jeffers (Harper Collins)

You can read a bit more about the Bistos at David Maybury's excellent blog.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Interview with Scalder for Scamp

I've just gotten back from a week long sojourn at The Tyrone Guthrie Centre, Annaghmakerrig.
It is a lovely old country house that was left to the Irish State by it's owner, the theatre director, Tyrone Guthrie,
"to be used for the purpose of providing a retreat for artists and other like persons.... as to enable them to do or facilitate them in doing creative work."
I'll write a post about it with some pictures soon.

Meanwhile, click here for an interview I did recently with Scalder of the IGI for the Scamp blog.