Former fine artist becomes book illustrator
AN artistic student has illustrated his talents in the world of fantasy literature.
The Northern School of Art Middlesbrough former BTEC fine art student Matti Walker, of Stockton, has teamed up with Redcar author Margaret D Clark, to illustrate his first book The Magic Kingdom.
The children’s fantasy adventure tells the story of Miranda who is taken to the Magic Kingdom by Pip the elf after she runs away from home.
Instead of sunshine and flowers they find an icy land ruled by evil witches and with time running out the pair bravely set out on a perilous journey to save the magical land.
Matti, 21, is now in his first year BA (Hons) Degree in Illustration for Commercial Application at The Northern School of Art’s Hartlepool campus.
He said: “It felt quite surreal to see my name and drawing on the cover of The Magic Kingdom and to physically hold the finished book in my hand was incredible.
“My mum has already bought loads of copies and has asked me to sign them all for family and friends.”
Matti, who met with the author once a week for three months, completed 15 drawings in total to complete the book.
“As I was reading the book the images just seemed to pop into my head,” said Matti.
“I knew immediately how I would illustrate it and Margaret loved my ideas but also gave me some constructive advice on how to tweak things a little to match her visions too.”
Diagnosed with dyslexia at school, Matti has used his love of art from an early age to help with his communication.
“I was good at maths but I found English really hard,” he said. “I loved art and after school I signed up for a design technology course to study as an architect but it wasn’t for me.
“Being creative I tried my hand at joinery but didn’t like being outdoors on building sites either.”
With one of his cousins studying photography at The Northern School of Art Matti decided to visit the college and was immediately stuck by the creative atmosphere.
“The fine art course really appealed to me,” said Matti. “I signed up and as soon as I started I knew I’d made the right decision. I just seemed to slot in straight away and knew it was the right place to be.
“I’m currently studying illustration and it is amazing.
“I’m hoping that it will open up even more opportunities for me to do lots more literary illustration work in the future,”
The Northern School of Art fine art tutor Judith Crompton, who originally recommended Matti to illustrate the book, added: “Matti was an extremely professional, hardworking and likeable part of our fine art cohort who made excellent developments and creative progression whilst studying on this course.”
The Magic Kingdom is now available to buy on Amazon, Waterstones and in other good book shops.
For more information on opportunities at The Northern School of Art contact (01642) 288888 or log on to www.ccad.ac.uk.