Original picture book artwork by Charlotte Voake is available for purchase from Children’s Book Illustration together with one limited edition print from Eleanor Farjeon’s Elsie Piddock Skips in her Sleep.
Charlotte Voake was born in 1957 in Wales, and was brought up in Chepstow and the Wirral. She studied art history at the University of London and illustrated her first children’s book whilst still there. She began her career with black and white line drawing including Phillipa Pearce‘s The Way to Sattin Shore in 1983, but was soon doing full colour picture books. She won the National Art Library Illustration Award in l989 for The Mighty Slide and has gone on to produce many distinguished books for very young children.
She has been shortlisted for the Kurt Maschler Emil Award four times for The Ridiculous Story of Gammer Gurton’s Needle (1989), The Best of Aesop’s Fables (1989), Caterpillar Caterpillar (1993), and Ginger (1997). Ginger was also shortlisted for the Kate Greenaway Medal in 1997 and won her the Nestlé Smarties Gold Award (1997) and the Sheffield Children’s Book Award. In 2002 she again won the Nestlé Smarties Award for Pizza Kittens. More recently she won the British Design and Production Award, 2007 for Hello Twins which also won the 2006 New York Times Ten Best Illustratetd Children’s Books.
Charlotte’s work has been exhibited widely and was included in The Magic Pencil exhibition organised by Quentin Blake and The British Council.
The print, Elsie Piddock Skips in Her Sleep, is taken from the cover of the book of the same name which was written by Eleanor Farjeon in 1937 and is considered the finest of all her stories. Charlotte was personally asked to illustrate the story by the Farjeon estate and it is the only illustrated version available.
Her original artwork is considered to be highly collectable and commands significant prices.
‘Now, said Elsie Piddock, for a Strong Skip!’
‘to see her skip...through the split oak-tree...’
‘in the Skip All Together, she could skip down the whole tribe of fairies...’
‘she could skip through the lattice of a skeleton leaf...’
‘It was ever and ever so long afterwards’
‘One of the handles was made of Sugar Candy, and the other of French Almond Rock’
‘Skip Against Trouble! cried she..and she skipped the Long Skip clean out of sight’
‘The lord invited a party of his friends to go with him to Caburn to see the sight’
‘In the Last Skip...Elsie never got giddy..’
‘Off went Heels-o'-Lead, and poked her head through Elsie's little window.. ’
‘Oh! Cried Joasn Challon...just look at little Elsie Piddock skipping as never so!’
‘If you go to Caburn at the new moon, you may hear a gay little voice...singing’
‘No, if you please, said a gentle withered voice, it is my turn now’
‘In the Fast Skip, she skipped so fast that you couldn't see her’
‘all the fairies leaped to their ropes and began skipping’