Friday, August 26, 2011

Mermaids and Sand Castles

Some years ago it was my pleasure to illustrate Kate's Castle, written by children's book author Julie Lawson. Like many beautiful books it is now out of print, even though the author and I still get requests from parents and teachers who would like to have a copy.

It begins, "This is the castle that Kate built"and builds from there with,
" This is the moat of sandy hue
That circles the castle that Kate built."
"This is the pool of anenomes,
whose swaying tentacles comb the seas
that fill the moat of sandy hue
That circles the castle that Kate built."

Kate's castle gets bigger, adorned with shells, crowned with turrents, waves come rolling in to surround it,
and creatures from the deep, including the mermaid above, swim by for a look.
Although the book is no longer available from the publisher I do have pretty cards with the above images and they will soon be on my Etsy shop.

On Author-Illustrator visits to schools I presented this book to many classrooms of children. They always fell right in with the winning poetry and the theme of sandcastle building and carefree hours on sandy beaches - they were even interested in how an artist makes the pictures that go with the words. I'm glad to hear from teachers that the appeal of books has not diminished, even with the advent of tablets and e-readers.

There was recently a sandcastle building event in the nearby harbour area. Artists set to work and within hours had produced these remarkable sand sculptures.


  1. It is so sad that so many great books are now out of print despite there being a demand for them. Maybe it would be possible to make it available as a POD or as an ebook?

    I love the "castle in the air" illustration in particular.

  2. What a lovely book and your illustrations as is indeed sad it is no longer in print.There is nothing like a "real book" to read and treasure. Enjoy the last flourish of summer,
    Jane x

  3. What a lovely idea for a story line, and how well your beautiful paintings bring the story to life. I love the reflecting pool, and how the little girl's imagination grows as she builds her castle.

    Truly beautiful in many ways. xo