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Alistair Parker Art

Alistair Parker is a nationally and internationally exhibited artist and photographer, with work represented by galleries in London, Manchester and Liverpool.

Alistair’s unique style explores process & media, with a particular emphasis on photography, digital process & experimental mixed-media techniques. This results in work with a unique finish & hauntingly contemporary appeal, increasingly sought after by design professionals as well as personal buyers.

Exhibition 6th to 18th October 2011 dot-art Showroom, 16 Queen Avenue, Castle Street, Liverpool L2 4TX 2

Welcome to the very first issue of


Magazine, which also happens to be the Christmas issue! I LOVE Christmas, I think it’s probably my favourite time of year! Check out the story behind my debut novel Snøfjell, on page 10, and read the free excerpt to get you in the festive mood. Jennifer M Smedley Director of PlantaPress

We also have an amazing new title here at PlantaPress, which is due out any day now, called The Lazy Seagull. It’s a cute and funny picture book aimed at the under 5s, so, if you have any budding, mini bookworms to buy for this Christmas, it could be the perfect gift! Find out all about it on page 23 Don’t miss my interview with the brilliant Bobbi Style on page 4—the man is mad, I tell you, and we had a ball!

Magazine published by PlantaPress ©2011 Distributed 3 times yearly, to bookshops, libraries, schools, and anyone else who wants a copy! If you wish to advertise in this magazine, or have any suggestions/complaints about it, please contact: Printed in the UK, by DPP/ Tangent Plc, London W1W 7NR Photo of Jennifer M Smedley: ©Anna Mavrakakis 2011

Self esteem is the topic on page 17, with personal development columnist, and qualified therapist, Sarah Wallace, and then, if you’re feeling up to it, dare to embark on a trip into the abyss (oh alright, just page 19!)for a guided tour on The Devil, from our resident white witch, and paranormal columnist, Yvonne Moore-Singh. This mag goes out three times per year; Christmas, Easter and Summer. In every issue, there will be excerpts from current titles, and a Publishing Insider section where you can find out a little bit more about key roles within publishing. This issue, we speak to three practicing illustrators about what got them into that line of work. We also have a submissions corner, for budding writers of all ages to showcase their work, so please feel free to email your submissions to I hope you enjoy this first issue, and the many more to come!

Merry Christmas! 3

80s Music Sensation BOBBI STYLE Is Back!


“Davros is my dad!” Cue raucous round...



“Yeah, you can put that in, actually, Jen!” chuckles Bobbi Style, midway through our international Skype interview, which turned out to be a blast! UK born, but now living in Coquitlam, British Colombia, Bobbi and I had a time difference of -8hr GMT between us. So, with him half awake, and me half asleep, we got to chatting about his early life, the 80s and 90s, and what he’s up to these days. Bobbi was a musical child, playing the bongos by the age of 2, and he credits his drummer uncle Chris Stone (who drummed with Billy J. Kramer, PJ Proby & the band The Tornadoes) as an early inspiration. By the age of five, Bobbi was drumming along by ear to rock n roll music.

bass at first, and later became the drummer. It was whilst he was the band's drummer that the lead singer suddenly quit, and it was suggested he take on the role of replacement frontman. The move to lead singer was a blessing in disguise for Bobbi, as his cerebral palsy had begun to contract, making it increasingly difficult for him to play the drums. Bobbi’s personality turned out to be as suited to being a frontman as his voice was, and was a deciding factor in decision to make music for a living. He recalls the heady experience of excited girls, screaming at him, during a gig when he was 15, and how he decided there and then that being a rock star was the way to go!

Professionally, the most striking thing about Bobbi is how authentic and strong he is as a person. A formidable, feisty character, he makes no apology for being exactly who he is, and tell me straight that, from the word go, he was determined to stun At boarding school, he stood out a the live crowds by performing better mile, owing in no small part to his than anyone else. penchant for multi coloured hair, and so earned himself the nickname With the Wildcats, he went on to ‘Mr Style’ “You weren’t supposed to sing a whole array of styles, anything be different at boarding school” he from Rock n roll to Gen X, displaylaughs, recalling those times, ing an impressive versatility that “Especially if you were disabled!” would later inspire Lee John of ImAt 14, Bobbi formed his first band agination to remark “Bobbi can sing “Bobbi and The Wildcats” He played anything!” 5

As the 80s moved on, Bobbi got to know, and work with, a number of high profile musicians including Generation X’s Bob ‘Derwood’ Andrews and the Cult’s Les Warner (with whom he still works today.

and he describes them as really lovely guys ‘with no egos’ He particularly misses the company of fellow disabled star Mick Scarlet, who was very popular on TV during the 80s, and he says he would dearly love to be back in touch with Mick, and, likewise, the He also got to know many of his aforementioned Lee of Imagination. musical contemporaries personally, and he relates to me the humorous He gave an interesting anecdote tale of how he got to know Duran about the secret altruistic side of Duran. He was at one of their gigs, Glen Gregory, from Heaven 17! They and Simon le Bon noticed the lights were drinking in the same pub, many on Bobbi’s wheelchair, from the years ago, and upon realising that stage. Simon called out ‘Hey, I can they were solely in the company of see you!” to which the inimitable women, Glen didn’t think twice about Bobbi replied, “Yeah, and I can see helping Bobbi to use the pub toilet. you as well!” A friendship with the Bobbi was very impressed with his boys was cemented there and then, decent attitude.

BOBBI IN THE 80s : (Left) Newspaper articles (Above) A very glamorous Vogue photo! (Far Right) With Limahl (ex Kajagoogoo)


At that time, Bobbi accomplished more than he realised, being signed to major labels, and selling out 5,000 seater venues, but it just wasn’t visible. Tim Abbot, known for having managed the likes of Robbie Williams, Oasis, and the label Better Records, asked Bobbi’s good friend, and music partner, Martin Lee-Stephenson “Why wasn’t he huge?” After chatting to Martin, about what Tim had said, Bobbi reflected, and came to the conclusion that his strong character probably had a lot to do with it. Likely jaded by Boy George’s infamous Virgin lawsuit, and all too aware of Bobbi’s strong personality, education, and huge following, his labels somewhat ‘played him down’. This reduced level of major label support meant that Bobbi’s massive popularity wasn’t as visible to the public as it should have been. Bobbi does concede, that he can’t blame the labels, for feeling

this way. He says that the music industry in the 80s, and 90s, was a very different place to nowadays Back then, labels tended to expect, and exert, a great deal of control over their artists, and a strong personality like Bobbi’s was met with some apprehension. “You don’t want a ‘problem person’ on your label!” he laughs, wryly. As the 90s dawned, with his following continuing to remain largely underground, Bobbi set up and ran his own label for a while. He moved to Canada in 1995, and remixed for artists like Will Smith and Kiss. By the end of the 90s, he was feeling somewhat jaded with the music industry and ‘gave up’ for about five years. During his time out, he was blessed with his son Tempest (now 14) and he moved to his current abode in Coquitlam, located in Southern British Columbia, Canada.


True to his powerful nature, Bobbi has since returned to the modern music scene with gusto, and was pleasantly surprised to find North American labels very welcoming. He believes that this is because times and attitudes have changed.

disabilities. It was the progress of a severely injured man called Ray Perry, that made Bobbi realise how essential the Access 2 Foundation was. Ray’s recovery accelerated when Bobbi allowed him to use the drum kit, in the studio that he had designed, and built.

Less controlling than they used to be, and with a strong disability rights/awareness movement gaining momentum, in the last 10-15 years particularly, both the labels, and the record buying market, are more receptive to a pop star who happens to use a wheelchair.

“He made some noise!” Bobbi exclaims, “Even his speech improved! Later on, he told me "’Bobbi, you brought me back from the dead!’ “ with a huge smile, this left Bobbi speechless.

Determined to break down the barBELOW: With best mate, Nick riers to music for the disabled, Bobbi Thorpe (ex Curiosity Killed The has set up the Access 2 Foundation. Cat) Access 2 supports and encourages new and existing recording studios to be accessible to the musician with


Bobbi describes the newly accessible studios as ‘Bob Friendly’ a phrase first coined by he, and his friends over the years, when deciding where to socialise. He proudly cites Les, from The Cult, as one of the first artists to completely adapt his entire studio to Access 2 standards. On going donations to the foundation are gratefully accepted, and many musicians have already donated their time, and talent. An album, entitled ‘Synthetic Frequencies” has already been recorded by 38 bands/ artists, and the UK label Platypus has just agreed to let them do a “Best of Platypus” trance compilation.

To get in touch, or find out more, contact: ACCESS 2 FOUNDATION Bobbi Style (CA) +001 604 551 5815 Reg Davey (UK) +44 752 338 2910 Access2foundation/ BOB FRIENDLY CHARITY www.bobfriendlycom OFFICIAL BOBBI SITE

Bobbi does a bit of mixing, in his own ‘Bob-Friendly’ studio 9

Snofjell The Making Of A Norwegian Fairytale

It was on July 22nd 2002, that Jennifer M Smedley decided to put pen to paper, and write a novel set in a country that had fascinated her since childhood. “That first day” she says, “I just wrote what was in my head, to see how far I could get. I could see an old woman sat in a chair, by a fireside, reminiscing about her past, and it just went from there” She set herself a target of one chapter per day, which she mostly kept to, and, a fortnight later, she had written the first eleven chapters. “I was a few chapters in, when the title “Snow Mountain’ came to me, and it just seemed to stick. I decided it would be really unusual to put the title into Norwegian, so I looked up the translation, and from then on it was called Snøfjell!” In September 2002, she commenced studies in Classics and Spanish at the University of Liverpool, and the novel languished at 13 chapters for many years. It was February 2009 when her friend Steve suggested she create a Facebook page for Snøfjell, to gauge public response. “I was hesitant at first” she laughs, “But decided to give it a go! I put the first seven chapters up, and I was really surprised by the response I got. Every time I advertised it, the fan numbers shot up, and people of all ages seemed to be interested in it” By the summer of 2010, fan numbers had remained static at 117, and Jennifer decided she ought to do something about Snofjell, before people lost interest. 10

Her plan to create a low key ebook changed, however, when accomplished Canadian artist Jennifer Llewellyn contacted her over the weekend of 3-5th September, having chosen her out of twelve authors to work with, and the project took on a more professional edge. The fans wanted paperbacks, too! So, in order to give Snøfjell the best chance of succeeding in a competitive market, and to gain maximum remuneration for Jenn L, whose extensive credits include computer game Sally’s Spa, and the film Catching Kringle, Jen S opted to set up publishing company PlantaPress. (Since they have the same name, and the abbreviations for Jennifer differ between the UK and Canada, they tend to refer to themselves as Jenn L and Jen S!) Jenn L brought in colourist, Bri Raymond, to assist with Snøfjell’s beautiful artwork. Bri describes the illustration process “Jenn L did all the linework for the ilustrations, scanned the images in, and sent them to me. After doing some research into the content of the images (such as the rosemaled chest and clothing) I added the colour digitally. It was an incredibly fun project and I’m very grateful to have been brought on!” It was a highly pressured project, as all three women had barely four months to get Snofjell ready for Christmas release. “I somehow managed to get Snofjell from 15 chapters in September to a fully finished, twenty eight chapter novel by early December” Jen S laughs. Meanwhile, in Canada, Jenn L and Bri were burning the midnight oil to ensure the artwork met the December deadline. Within a month of release, on 20th December 2010, it was accepted onto the online catalogues of major bookshops like Waterstones, and WH Smith. Less than a year later, there are over 300 fans on the Facebook page, and two Liverpool branches of Waterstones (L1 and Bold St) have ordered a copy each for their shelves. Jen S has just printed the second edition, to ensure it is of a high enough standard, for them. Now rare, first edition copies of Snøfjell can be found in The Bodleian Library, Oxford, The Grand Hotel, Oslo, The National Library of Scotland, Edinburgh, The Royal Norwegian Embassy, London and Chestermere Public Library, Alberta. Jen S has plans to create both a prequel and a sequel for Snøfjell,, if public interest continues to grow. Media interest is certainly increasing, and Jen S is set to appear in Mersey Magazine towards the end of this year/early 2012.

See overleaf for an excerpt from the book, and where to buy! 11

Snofjell (excerpt) So, that evening, as planned, we crept quietly out of the house at midnight in our warmest clothes, stood under the apple tree, and waited for Stjernskride. It was not long before he appeared. “Children” he smiled, “You’re here! Now, as you say in England, Harriet hold onto your hollyhocks!” With that, he snapped his fingers, and we shot upwards with a whoosh. When we looked down, we found we were flying over the forest, next to my grandparent’s house. “Stjernskride!” I shouted, “What if my grandmother looks out of the window, and sees us?” “She can’t see you!” Stjernskride shouted back, “You’re invisible!” We all burst out laughing, and I found I could swoop, and twirl. Espen did the same. Stjernskride looked back, and laughed. “Stop playing, children, and concentrate!” he shouted, chuckling, “You’re missing the views!” Indeed we were! We looked down, to see we were flying over snowcapped mountains, and a wide glistening fjord. Thick forests of deep green fir trees lay in all directions, and, in the distance, we could see a herd of wild reindeer running across a mountainside. “The reindeer don’t always sleep!” shouted Stjernskride, “Sometimes they’ll travel in the dead of night, usually down to a fjord to have a quick drink…Ok! Turn here and follow me…” We followed him, turning against the wind to the right. The arctic wind was biting, but we didn’t feel it. We were too happy! The navy blue sky was filled with twinkling stars, the moon was bright, and the Northern Lights shimmered, in purple, and gold. We looked down, again, and saw we were flying over a town. Some of the cosy wooden houses had lights in their windows, but most of them were in darkness. 12

We flew on for another few minutes, and then suddenly found we began to drop. I almost fainted with excitement, when I saw why! There, ahead of us, sparkling majestically on the snow- capped mountainside, Kjaerlighet glistened as brightly as the day I had first seen it. We flew lower, and lower, until we landed, surprisingly lightly it has to be said, and our feet were crunching on the soft white snow. It was very chilly.

Tromsø Harbour

“Come on inside” said Stjernskride, “I’ll open the door. She knows we’re coming…” He unbolted the great oaken door, and we followed him inside… It was beautiful! Espen, and I, gazed in wonder at the glistening icy walls, of what seemed to be some sort of great hall. There were ice sculptures, everywhere, depicting every type of animal, plant, and flower. The smooth floor was tiled with gold, and little twinkling lights flew about, every now and then. “What on earth are they?!” I asked Stjernskride, pointing to the little lights. “Those, my dear” Stjernskride smiled, “are the fairies! They help with just about everything!” 13

“Who are we here to see?” asked Espen, as we followed Stjernskride across the hall. “The Queen, of all the fairy folk” answered Stjernskride, “Her name is Queen Gresslette. Gresslette means Meadow‟” “Is, er, Queen Gresslette expecting us?” I asked him. “Oh, she most certainly is!” he replied, as we neared a large doorway. “Ah, we’re here!” he said, pushing open another large door. We found ourselves in a large room, also made of ice, and full of sculptures. Yet we were not cold! It helped that a warm fire burned in a nearby hearth, but why the ice did not melt, with the heat, we have never found out. Magic, presumably! At the far end of the room was a great golden chair; a throne belonging to Queen Gresslette. At either side, there was a small doorway. We were standing in the curious room for a short while, when another little man with pointy ears came running out towards us. He was, of course, a nisse, but a little smaller than Stjernskride. “Stjernskride!” he shouted, “Du er har!” Stjernskride laughed heartily, turning to us, “This” he gestured to the other nisse, “Is my brother Glimt, and he says, “You are here!” He turned back to Glimt, “Snakke vi engelsk Glimt?” he asked him. “Oh!” Glimt exclaimed, “Yes of course we shall speak in English. I’m sorry Harriet, I do apologise!” I smiled. “Thank you Glimt” I answered, “My Norwegian is not quite good enough yet, but I am working on it!” Glimt went on, “Well, Queen Gresslette is expecting you!” he said, “We had better go now, before she grows impatient. Please, follow me, and I will escort you to her chamber” He took us through one of the little doors, at the side of the throne, and into a great long corridor, filled with yet more sculptures. There was a particularly beautiful reindeer sculpture, further down, made of ice like the rest of them, but this one had a nose made of ruby. Of course, this was Rudolph...!


Glimt winked, “He comes past here at Christmas time, you know! he said. “Really?!” Espen, and I, exclaimed. ***

Want to read more? Order your copy of Snofjell now!


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Hand Poured Non-Toxic Crayons

Snøfjell Handmade Bracelet

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Turquoise/Tigers Eye/ Swarovski Crystal

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Stockists: Be Marvelous Pagan Charms Plantacandle/Plantagemstone Two Little Birdies


Help Yourself! With Sarah WalIN BRIEF: A SEMI SERIOUS LOOK AT SELF ESTEEM Self-esteem is sometimes thought of as being a rather elusive concept. However, self-esteem simply refers to the overall opinion we have of ourselves, and the value we place upon ourselves as people. Whether positive, or negative, it’s the tone of that opinion that determines our self-esteem, and it’s our self -esteem that usually determines our quality of life. It calls to mind that hackneyed slogan of old; ‘Your attitude determines your altitude’, but writ large. Sounds great, right?

‘If I think positive thoughts about myself and the world around me, I’ll feel fantastic and have a great life’ Yes? Well, yes... And, no... Improving your self-esteem can be a simple job, or a big job, depending on your starting point. Thought Cycles... We can have a million, and one, thoughts running through our mind over the course of a single day – more if we’re even slightly stressed. Each thought can affect our mood, which can then in turn affect the way we interact with our environment which then feeds back into our thoughts and feelings, which then feeds back into…you get the picture. The dynamic interaction between our thoughts, feelings, and environment can prompt either an upward spiral or a downward spiral.

...And Spirals Upward spirals are great, but downward spirals…not so much. Although downward spirals can sometimes be beneficial, forcing us to relax, they generally tend to perpetuate low self-esteem, especially if they go on for too long. Improving our self-esteem by changing our thoughts to more reasonable, helpful ones can be done with relative ease, but difficulties can arise within the process. This is not just because of the sheer volume of our thoughts, but because the human psyche is a slippery customer. The Deceptive Self Pretty much the whole discipline of psychotherapy right back to Freud and even beyond to the Greeks can be summed up in that one line. 17

The human psyche is a slippery customer, indeed. It loves you with that stifling, mawkish, yet ultimately passiveaggressive, love reserved for overprotective family members, or co-dependant partners, which creates fertile ground for self-deception. Part of the process of changing our thoughts, to more reasonable ones, is learning to call ourselves out on this self-deception. For example, the ‘reasons’ why we don’t want to be kind to that annoying, new, person in the office, or the reasons why we feel we ‘deserve’ that cake or drink when we are trying to cut down. Or the endless ‘reasons’ we come up with, for why we’ll go into therapy next year. Procrastination And Perfectionism Whilst it is true that there are optimal times to attend to problems/conquer bad habits, if we find ourselves frequently procrastinating over issues that are important to us, that could well be our low self-esteem signalling its existence. In addition to procrastination, there are many other signs of low self-esteem. Feelings of elf-criticism, self-blame, and self-doubt may prompt a whole slew of ‘negative’ emotions such as sadness, anger, anxiety, guilt, shame and frustration. These thoughts and feelings can manifest in behaviours such as poor self-care, and the avoidance of both challenges and opportunities. Conversely, and attitude of perfectionism or ‘life and soul of the party’ can signal self-esteem issues. When we overcompensate in this way, it can often be prompted by a sense that if we do not perform in this fashion, people will not want to know us. In particular, low self-esteem can be a product of clinical depression, and a much overlooked aspect of low selfesteem is just how stressful it is. What Can We Do? Signs of a high degree of self-esteem include appreciation of oneself and others, a healthy level of self- a general sense of optimism, and a desire to make a ‘positive contribution’ to society. We are able to maintain close relationships, adapt to changing situations in a resourceful way, and we prefer to face problems head on, and take appropriate action to resolve them, rather than endlessly worry, or procrastinate, about them.. . When we become aware that we’re suffering from low self-esteem, paying particular attention, to the basics of self-care, will ensure that we’re in as good a place as we can be, when we begin to take larger steps, towards improving our self-esteem. This can be either through therapy, or personal development work.

Sarah Wallace is a qualified Cognitive Behavioural Therapist.


Mystery & Magic with Yvonne Moore-Singh

The Devil’s in the Detail…

The idiom ‘the Devil’s in the detail’ refers to a ‘catch or mysterious element ‘ hidden in the details. It is a fitting title for this issue’s article, so close to Hallowe’en, in which we explore the origins of the figure known as the Devil, and reveal little known details about him, that may surprise you…


So, what do you see when

evil deity we know today. This coincided with the beginnings of the persecution and burning of witches across Europe, also known as The Burning Times, though witches in England tended to be hanged, rather than

you think of the Devil? Horns, and a tail, perhaps? In fact, the Devil described in the Bible looked more

burned. Until then, the old gods had long resided in the minds and hearts of

like a man. Believed

the country folk, who still turned to fallen angel in enmity them for spiritual help. by Christians to be a with God, others

As Christianity advanced in dominance, these ‘old ways’ were pushed underground, and the old pagan gods Pan and Cernuous combined to form the image of the Devil we see today. It

wonder whether he might, instead, be the Biblical version of the Greek god Hades; god of death and the underworld.

is this fourteenth century image of the Devil which tends to upset those who who should be punished for their ill deeds in life. A just ruler of the under- follow the Pagan path. It was Hades (above) who decided

world, he helped the dead journey successfully into the afterlife. Hades took

It has always been true that the use of image is of key importance in creating

his grave responsibility very seriously, which was to prevent the dead escaping back to Earth, thus maintaining equi-

a brand, especially in the past when few people could read, and the new image of the Devil created a lasting impres-

librium between the two worlds.

sion in the mind of the average lay-

Perhaps, one day, the Biblical Devil


will return to this role in the future, as the Church is ever changing. If, in 2007, the Catholic Church can abandon the idea of Limbo, perhaps Hell will, one day, follow suit‌ It was around the fourteenth century that the Devil came to represent the 20

Cernuous was called the ‘Stag God or starting to reclaim the image, and identhe Horned God’ and his image is often tity, of our beloved, old gods. discovered at sacred Romano-Celtic sites. Lord of the Hunt, and of animals, he is associated with the Hindu deity Shiva, and with the fertility goddess, he ruled the forces

Ref erence :‘The Devil’s In The Detail’ Titelman, Gregory, Random House

Dictionary of Popular Proverbs and Sayings, Random House Reference, March 5, 1996

The god Pan, whose name comes from the Greek word ‘paein’ for ‘pasture’ ruled the wild, shepherds and goats. With the body of a man, and goats horns and hoofs, he closely resembles

Yvonne Moore-Singh is a white witch, and proprietor of online new age shop Pagan Charms.

today’s image of the Devil. In his pursuit of the moon goddess, Selene, Pan is also seen as the god of pleasure and sex. Despite the fact that the modern Devil is an amalgamation of two old Pagan gods, the beliefs of modern Pagans and the Church diverge strongly here. Pagans do not believe in a Devil, but believe in being answerable to one’s own conscience. We adhere to the rule of three, which states that what we send out for good or ill will return to us three times magnified, so we believe that one reaps what one sows in life. The modern Devil has little connection with the old ways, and it is in today’s more enlightened times, that we are 21


NEW TITLE: Meet the creators of the latest

PlantaPress title, for the under 5s!

The Lazy Seagull, a heart-warming ‘coming of age’ tale for the under 5s, is released this season by PlantaPress. The character of Lazy is based on a real life seagull, who appeared to be stranded in a car park, close to where joint authors Johnny Parker, and Andrea Foy, live. “I think he must have sat in the same place for at least two weeks” says Andrea Foy, “People would throw him food and leave him water, though his parents would dive bomb anyone who got too close. He fast became a bit of a local celebrity, and street pet. Eventually, we saw him tentatively make his first, feeble, attempts at flying, and then, one day, the whole family had gone” She, and Johnny, would speculate about how he got there, and why he seemed so rooted to that particular spot. “I began to jot down my ideas” she said, “and it was only later on, that we thought it would make a good children’s story”

Johnny Parker is no stranger to writing, and, as The Lazy Seagull demonstrates, has a particular knack for comedy. He started out writing 23

film scripts, and in 2008 he won Best Short Film at the Wirral International Film Festival for his comedy short Beauty And The Butcher. 2008 turned out to be an exceptionally good year for Johnny, as this was the year that he was published in Stories From The City, with two, wonderfully evocative, quotes of his, from it, currently on display at the new Museum of Liverpool. This is one of them “Look past the

shining new towers and shopping malls, to see what beats underneath” Johnny also did a bit of travel journalism, back in 2007, blogging about the yacht race for ‘Australia And New Zealand Magazine’ but still describes himself as a late bloomer when it comes to the pen. PlantaPress are just glad that he finally shifted his talented light from under that bushel! Follow up titles to Lazy are in the pipeline as he has some great ideas for kids stories in mind. He’d also like to do some more film scripts, and feels comedy is definitely h is favourite genre. We agree—he’s very funny! The illustrator of The Lazy Seagull, Winston Tsang, had an unusual foray into the world of art. He wanted to be a doctor, or a vet, when he was a child, but his mother spotted his talent for drawing, and encouraged him to be an artist instead! It’s usually the other way round for most children, and Winston credits his parents for allowing him to be himself. He showed early promise, winning a competition to draw, for the cover, of a women’s magazine at the age of 7, and he later went on to study Fine Art, alongside science subjects. After a number of freelance placements, around Liverpool and Manchester, he met Johnny at a KIN/ACME event, and now finds himself illustrating his first book! Whilst he says that his main interest is graphic design, he would like to illustrate further books, if the right project comes along. Winston has a particular talent for drawing facial expressions and he credits Japanese artist Hayao Miyazaki as a core influence on this aspect of his work.

The Lazy Seagull is available to order, priced £4.49, from all good bookshops. See back cover of magazine for a short excerpt from the book, and where to buy! For more information on Liverpool’s KIN network, visit:


Submissions Corner…. As this is the first issue, I thought we could start our Submissions Corner off with a rather dramatic poem I wrote, back when I was around 14. It just came to me, from nowhere, one day, and is quite apocalyptic, with oddly archaic language. It sounds religious, but, though brought up Catholic, I wasn’t conscious of feeling that way at the time of writing, so I have no idea what was going on in my head at the time! For the next issue, please submit your own poetry, prose/ screenplay excerpt (by January 31st 2012) to This section will be larger, and better, in future, to accommodate greater numbers of submissions! And there will be prizes for the best ones! All ages are welcome!


Golden Sun, how dost thou shine! Upon this lowly earth. Glist’ning Moon, how dost thou glow! With thy silver glare, upon men who dare, question creation.

For the dawn will come, to end all morns, when Mother Earth herself will hang her head in shame. The thunder will raise its voice in woe, and the very wind will groan. For the children of her womb, who have long forsaken truth... Jennifer M Smedley, Age 14 (1993)


Publishing Insider: Ever Wanted To Be An Illustrator? Three practicing professionals within the industry share their expertise in this short, but sweet, insight into one of the most important roles in entertainment...

Name: Bri Raymond Age: 23 It All Started When: I was first able to pick up a pencil. Shortly thereafter, no piece of paper was safe... Training: 2D animation & Multimedia at New Media Campus, Canada. Current Role: Full Time E-Learning Flash Developer & Occasional Illustration Freelancer What It Involves: As a flash developer, I add effects to digital instructional courses. These can be anything, from character animation, to text effects. Freelance, I accept independent character illustration or colourisation work. Website: Above: ‘Strawberry Sunshine’


Name: Jennifer Llewellyn Age: 29 It All Started When: I was able to hold a crayon on my own. Training: Classical Animation, 3D Animation, Commercial Animation, Sculpting, Life Drawing at Van Arts, Canada. Current Role: Animation Director at Games CafÊ, and CEO of Lightbox Entertainment. Above: Sally’s Spa (Game animation)


Name: Winston Tsang Age: 24 It All Started When: My mum noticed my talent, and nurtured it. Training: Graphic Design, at the University of Salford, UK Advice to others: Persevere, never give up. Even when you feel down, something will always come up eventually! Website: Above: Commission work for Baa Bar, Liverpool

Useful Links:

Prospects: (job profiles, salaries etc) Art Careers: (roles in art) UCAS: (UK university courses) 27

The Lazy Seagull (excerpt)

“A storm is coming, you have to fly. We cannot wait —look at the sky!” “In a minute mum, this nest is cosy!” “No, we have to go. Come on Lazy!” As Lazy snoozed, and dreamed of flying, the wind picked up his nest without hardly trying.. He thought that flying was such a lark...until he woke a car park...


PlantaPress Magazine  
PlantaPress Magazine  

In-house magazine of UK publishing company PlantaPress.