Be a soft plastics warrior

I recently received a newsletter from wonderful author and environmentalist Nicole Godwin, highlighting some of the plastics that can be recycled through the Redcycle program. It was amazing – as I was feeling so guilty adding these to our rubbish, and fantastic to hear there were options to give them a second life. With Nicole’s permission I created a downloadable poster, so we can stick this above a new bin for our plastics – hurrah! Feel free to print this for your house…

New Website

It’s a bit tricky working on a new avenue and wondering where to put it! But I’ve been having such a ball creating huge paintings, I wanted to put them all somewhere. So I am slowly building a new site: http://www.jessracklyeft.com!

If you have a moment, have a squizz, and you can also see more originals currently at Bluethumb.

Painting

As an illustrator, we are often working to a brief with a set outcome, and a bit of a known process – pencil sketches, research, more sketches, roughs, painted art, digital art etc… I know kind of what I am going to end up with.

During this long year of lockdown, I knew I needed a new outlet for my creativity and I’ve been having an absolute ball painting! With no expectations, massive canvases, and layers upon layers of colour. They are completely unplanned and it is such a peaceful process building shapes and colour as I go.

I’ve been thrilled that they have been selling – its so nice to find happy homes for these big pieces (as I’ve run out of space here!). You can see the available works here: Bluethumb

Here are some of the works mocked up into new homes neater than mine. xx

Welcome Baby, To This World

I am very excited to be sharing images from Welcome Baby – my new book with Affirm Press! It is almost like a dedication from a parent to a bambino, celebrating all the things they will do together in their life ahead. I hope you like it! A few images from the book below… And a special thanks to the wonderful ladies, Davina Bell and Anna Walker, for helping me get it to the best it could be.

There’s Only One Dad Like You

I’m excited to share some images from my DELUXE edition of TOODLY – out tomorrow in Australia! It was another that I have the honour of illustrating and writing… I loved working on this book, with the amazing Affirm Press team including Davina Bell and Anna Walker and this fancy edition ticks many book dreams I’ve had for a long time – including cloth spine and foil! You can read more about the book here

TOODLY DELUXE!

Spread Magic Not Germs

Ahh, poor Melbourne. We are feeling pretty – glum, concerned, strong, sad, confused, fine – all of the above here! It’s really difficult going back into lockdown take two, but of course, important with the cases of corona rising scarily. Homeschooling has been announced today (it really took it out of us all last time) and my friends are all ranging from feeling powerful to completely flat (again).

Poster-Flyer-Letterheads-A4

But, like last time, sweet ideas are emerging from the dust, and I saw via The Little Bookroom an idea to post window fairies, unicorns, dragons etc – to replace our previous rainbows and teddy bears. I tried to get the kids to help me paint some to no avail (I’m sure, given the choice of homeschool vs craft fairies they will cave in!) but in the meantime I did my own to print for the window and cut out and glitterize, and I thought others might like it too. So here is a downloadable A4 print “Spread Magic Not Germs”.

Here you go, and good luck Melbourne. We can do it! Download: MagicNotGerms

Ivy Bird publishing in the US!

Tania McCartney (author) and I are thrilled to share our book Ivy Bird has flown overseas and will be publishing with the wonderful Blue Dot Press on April 7th. Blue Dot create books that “aspire to empower the next generation of global citizens with empathy, resilience, creativity, and the shared value of nature and its stewardship” and we are just so happy that our book has found a home with them after Windy Hollow. Exciting times! Ivy_Bird-2Ivy_Bird_interior1-2Ivy_Bird_interior2-2

Anzac Girl: The War Diaries of Alice Ross-King

In just a couple of weeks, a new book I worked on will be released, Anzac Girl published by Allen and Unwin. This book was a new challenge for me – aimed at a slightly older audience than I normally draw for, and focused on the true story of Alice, written by her great-granddaughter, Kate Simpson  and threading her real diary entries with her beautiful narrative.

I decided a new challenge needed a new technique! So I ended up piecing collage from many sources – the State Library, my own photographs and family archived photos, War Memorial archives and many other sources. It was such a big book to work on with so many “moving parts” but I felt so thrilled with the outcome, and we are very excited to share it with the world.

“The true story of Anzac girl Sister Alice Ross-King, who sailed to war in December 1914 and became the most decorated woman in Australia.

It was 1914 when Sister Alice Ross-King left Australia for the war. Nursing was her passion – all she had ever wanted to do. But Alice couldn’t have imagined what she would see. She served four long years and was brave, humble and endlessly compassionate.

Using extracts from Alice’s actual diaries kept in the Australian War Memorial, this story captures the danger, the heartache and the history of the young nurse who would one day become the most decorated woman in Australia.” – Allen and Unwin