Tuesday, 2 December 2014

First Collector's Edition Children's Book: The Power of Friendship, Determination and Fear of a Looming Deadline!

It's a very rare and special thing so meet someone by chance and instantly 'click', knowing that you are going to become great friends. I've been lucky enough to make two such friends over the last year.

One of those friends is Alice. We met by chance at 'A Celebration of Nature' in May this year and hit it off straight away. I was so pleased when Alice 'made the first move' and invited me to meet up for cake as I'd been wishing I had suggested the same thing. We have since bonded over a mutual love of art, books and good food. Alice secured her place in my heart as one of my favourite people in the world when she bought some gluten free cookbooks especially for cooking me supper (hands down the best pudding I've eaten this year).

During September, Alice invited me over to her house to ask me something important. She asked if I would like to make a children's book together. We got chatting about possible stories and I had the mad idea that we could make a limited edition fine art print book in time for the Christmas h.Art Weekend (5th-7th December), giving us just a few months to write and illustrate it. 'A Yuletide Tale' was born.

I'm a perfectionist and if I have a year to do something, it would take me a year, so working to a strict deadline has been very good for me. I definitely wouldn't have stuck to such a short time frame without Alice's encouragement or wanting to live up to her beautiful writing. It's been a very, very hectic few weeks but we did it!

We wanted our book to be a special Christmas gift and didn't want to cut on any corners and I'm so proud of what we achieved. 'A Yuletide Tale' is inspired by 'The Holly and the Ivy' Christmas Carol. It features my dip pen and ink illustrations as well as archival quality colour fine art prints. Every book is bound by hand and is a signed and numbered limited edition of 50.

Extra special thanks go to our parents for chipping in with our mammoth production lines, Iris Print for producing such beautiful miniature colour prints and The King's School Worcester reprographics department for such a fantastic printing job.

'A Yuletide Tale' will be available at our Christmas h.Art Open Weekend this week (5th-7th December). For details and directions, please see the flyer below. We will have plenty of mulled wine, mince pies and sausage rolls for visitors too. Just follow the pink signs for Venue 10!

We've already had pre-pre-orders so if you would like to reserve a copy to avoid disappointment please email me at katebsmith89@mac.com. Each book is £45.75 and will be available for collection during the h.Art weekend or can be posted if this is not possible.