Illustrated Book Award Interview with the V&A’s Rebecca Law

Please find the Interview


Endpaper for Hansel and Gretel in which the children’s world is made of vintage building blocks.

The March Lockdown put an end to the proposed V&A exhibition of works by the several categories of Illustration Award winners. There is be no V&A 2021 Illustration Award, and the current plan – all being well – is to re-schedule the postponed 2020 winner’s exhibition for next year.

I was so pleased to be asked to take part in the V&A interview. It enabled me to credit all those who brought Simon Armitage’s text to the page. Particularly the publisher, Joe Pearson, who I hold in the highest esteem, and Laurence Beck, who meticulously ‘cleaned up’ and colourised my drawings ready for printing. (I put him through so many palette variations, and yet he remained unruffled and good humoured throughout.) The book was a team effort, and everyone worked tirelessly to get it to the finishing line.

My thanks to all at the V&A, especially to Rebecca Law, my contact throughout, who asked interesting questions in the interview. (link at top of page)

3 thoughts on “Illustrated Book Award Interview with the V&A’s Rebecca Law

  1. Dear Clive
    Went to the interwiew, and loved it.

    Realised I did not have Marly Youman’s The Red King (this whole year has been hard for me) but I am ordering it this Instant.
    And I look forward to the Beauty and the Beast. (I finally saw the Cocteau film, and still can’t stand Jean Marais, though I know I shall love your version of the Beast.)

    And I shall be on the lookout for the next …
    Love from Madrid for both of you.

    • Dear Maria. You have treasures in store. The Book of the Red King is a wonder. It’s been quite the roller-coaster ride to have done two books for Marly that came out within months of each other, both of which are so moving. Reading the poems of The Book of the Red King had already knocked the breath out of me when the novel Charis in the World of Wonders arrived on my desk to floor me with its tone, its narrative and the sheer courage and ingenuity of its writing. I count myself so lucky in the writers I collaborate with.

      I revel in the fact you continue to hold against Marais, even in this his most iconic role of La Bête, because it lays down the exciting challenge of bringing you around to my version of him! Ha ha!

      Sending you love and the biggest hugs.

      • Both “The Red King”, and ” Charis in the world of wonders” are well on their way home . I can’t wait.

        I hope you admit that having Marais, not just as La Bète , and as The Prince ( here, he looked great ) , but also as Avenant, with that terrible Louis XIV wig, was a bit excessive. At least, it was, for me.
        I liked Cocteau in his novel ” Les enfants Terribles”. But The ” Belle et la Bète” film, was too much Marais …
        Hope you forgive me for this, as I know I an going to adore your version.
        Love from Madrid


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