One of my favourite illustrators and inspirations is Spanish artist, Patricia Metola. With a catalogue spanning across children’s literature to magazine features and museum exhibits, Metola’s illustrations are a mix of whimsy and simplicity. Her characters are often outlined with cute childlike features. The detail usually comes in the background of her drawings, especially her leafy exteriors, where she employs a Claude Monet technique with flat brush strokes built up to create whole structures. I love how colourful her images can be, with just one or two primary colours she can convey so many lovely emotions. The children’s (of which most of her drawings are based) expressions and movements are remarkably accurate: playful, curious, funny and cute. I could look at her work all day, but then I wouldn’t get any of my own done. It’s a mix of childhood fantasy and nightmare looking at her work, and a reminder of how a child’s mind can go to places far and beyond. Much like Maurice Sendak’s work. A lot of the images you may recognise from re-issued cautionary / fairy tales that Metola has been commissioned to work on including, Tom Thumb and Hansel and Gretel. I’ve kept her close to my heart for too long so here I want to share.