Summer 2010Map of Jamaica
A friend in real estate needed to show prospective clients where the most important spots in Jamaica are, like good coffee, golf, and high-end resorts. Now the map is used by Golden Eye, once the home to someone famous…. now the property of someone else famous. Nice place. Visitors probably don’t leave, but if they do they have a map with all the important details…
I love using a calligraphic pen – a dip pen and a pot of ink – can’t go wrong as a drawing tool. I like the irregular lines and blots it makes. And with waterproof ink you can give the whole thing a wash of light color when you’re done…
Summer 2012 Illustrated Children’s BookDuring the hot summer of 2012, while my two daughters ran an art camp on the veranda for a dozen kids a week, I sat at the dining room table and worked on illustrating a children’s book. It killed quite a few birds with one stone: I could keep an eye on the antics outside and be available if a near-fatal accident demanded driving to the Emergency Room with an ailing child; the noise of the kids didn’t bother me as I was lost in the world of drawing; I got a chance to revisit the world of my childhood, which was full of beautifully illustrated children’s books (Dr Seuss an all-time favorite); and I got a chance join forces with a survivor of World War 2 in a creative endeavor.Maurice was sent out of London, as so many children were, during the Blitz of 1940. He was only nine at the time, and before the war was over both his parents had been killed when his neighbourhood and everyone in it was destroyed by German bombers. He somehow became a quantity surveyor and came to Jamaica as a young man to work on a project, but he never left, marrying and settling down and becoming a part of the Jamaican community. I met him as he’s a family member of a close friend of mine, and in a veranda conversation he told me about a book he had written for children, one that had come about when his kids were little. He would tell them stories at bedtime, using their names, and they involved a talking mouse who had many adventures…. One thing led to another, and the one drawing he asked me to do became a fully illustrated book.
It has received some positive interest, but the economy in Jamaica is very slow and the population very small. We think that it would be a big hit with the Jamaican diaspora. Now to find a publisher. Any ideas?
My family all love to cook – perhaps its the eating part we love, but you can’t have one without the other, and the preparing of food can become so creative that I do believe I love it as much as the eating! My mum is the same; a little of this, a little of that, and if you ask us during the meal how it was done then you’ll get an answer, but by the following day it’s gone clean out of our minds. Mine anyway – Mum is probably better than me as my memory is so poor… So, recipes are really a good thing, but I have trouble reading them, let alone following them… really don’t know why. My sister Roisin swears by recipes, and is therefore an amazing cook, making 5-course Indian one night and Mediterranean the next. She cannot understand how I don’t use them, and nor does dad. They are very much alike, as Mum and I are, so we understand that there are genetic differences and leave it at that.
However, Christmas was coming up and she was mad into the website They Draw and Cook, a site that showcases illustrated recipes (very cool stuff), and was in a flurry of activity, drawing these delightfully illustrated recipes and submitting them, and she encouraged me to do the same, so I drew the above as a gift for her and sent it from Kingston, Jamaica around the world to Galway, Ireland via her favorite website at the time. Her name is Roisin Cure. WHen I figure out how to add her information to this blog I will do so… but until then key her name in to Google and enjoy!