Picture book retrospective – The Long Grass

For the next few weeks I’m doing a retrospective of my picture books.

The Long Grass is co-created with Mollie Macgregor-Kinnis, and based on
a couple of Mollie’s dreams: the idea of being told not to go into the
long grass but then going anyway, and visiting the Queen of Hearts who
turns out to be horrible, was in one dream; the black snake was in
another dream.

I spent most of a summer making charcoal drawings of long grass, weeds,
nettle patches, brambles and so forth for this book. It’s a kind of
innocence and experience story, and in a way it resembles Maurice
Sendak’s Where the Wild Things are. My favourite pictures are the ones
of Peter the Hare in the long grass; and Alice, the girl in the story,
setting off into the grass on a hot day, with her house hazed over in
the background.

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