Biography

I am one of the six daughters of Peter Firmin www.peterfirmin.co.uk who, with Oliver Postgate, created Bagpuss, The Clangers, Noggin the Nog and Ivor the Engine on the farm where my parents still live.
I went to Art College after school and have been working as an illustrator since then.
I have three grown up daughters and live in Faversham with my partner and two cats.

Illustration

I have been illustrating and writing professionally since I was 23 years old.
I wrote my first children's book when I was a student in Brighton (Hannah's Great Decision) and it was published by Macmillan.
Over the years I have illustrated more than thirty books and written seven.
The last two stories I illustrated were online and inter-active for Learndirect www.wheredidtherivergo.co.uk

Bibliography

  • Alex’s Bed, Alex and Roy, Alex and the Baby, Alex’s Outing and New Clothes for Alex
    by Mary Dickinson. Scholastic Books.
  • I’m Going on a Dragon Hunt and I’m Going on a Gorilla Hunt
    by Maurice Jones. Scholastic Books.
  • Being Bullied, Feeling Left Out, Playing the Game and Making Friends
    by Kate Petty. Aladdin Books.
  • Isn’t She Clever and Aren’t They Wonderful
    by Evelyn de Jong. Scholastic Books.
  • The Custard Kid, Calamity Kate, The Wishing Well Ghost, The Lambton Worm and The Windmill of Nowhere
    by Terry Deary. A & C Black.
  • Where Did the River Go? The Journey to Darkest Somewhere and The House of Scary Words
    by Peter Corey. Learndirect.

Workshops

I love going into schools and libraries to run story making workshops.
I bring along a big, empty book and the children make up a story together and I illustrate it in front of them.
I have done this with all ages from nursery age children to secondary school students.
Often I am invited during book week and sometimes for a special occasion like the anniversary of a school.
Once I interviewed a Mum who was a midwife in front of a year one class and we made a book about her job and what happens when a new baby joins a family!
To make a booking for Charlotte to come to your school or library click this link to Authors Aloud UK

China

Every week I spend at least one day painting in the Cosmo China www.cosmochina.co.uk shop in Canterbury.
I have lots of different designs including, cats, crocodiles, foxes, frogs, hares, horoscopes, and fairies, but I love doing personalised commissions best. Cosmo China  Flickr
These can be to celebrate weddings, birthdays, new babies, retirements and anniversaries. My story plates illustrate and preserve precious moments in people's lives.
I like to have a conversation with the customer but this can be via email or phone and my china goes all over the world.

China Pictures

Click for some pictures of my china work

Projects

Since 2005 I have worked on longer term projects with young people and adults. I have worked in primary, secondary and special schools endeavouring to make the curriculum more creative. I am CRB cleared and public liability insured.
I have worked in special schools exploring maths and English and with secondary school students exploring poetry and art. I have often worked in collaboration with practitioners in other fields.
I try to use renewable and recycled materials whenever possible.
I have collected stories from people attending a Help the Aged day centre and turned them into illustrated books. I also collected stories from foreign nationals in prison where I made illustrated books which they sent to their children.

I am currently working on two projects; one in Sure Start Centres in Thanet working with parents, exploring child development and one for Canterbury City Council producing and illustrating children’s stories.
The latter has been nominated for a Community Award as part of the 2013 Canterbury Culture Awards.

Professional development

I have worked with other professionals on many occasions, sharing what I have learned working in different settings. I have worked with artists about to start working in schools, mentored other practitioners and worked with Foundation stage teachers.

Drawing People

Over the last year I have been employed on several occasions to draw families attending social events organised by their housing association. I enjoy it very much and people seem to love having their portraits drawn.
It can be anything from 'Families of three generations' to 'Dad with new puppy'.
I am only sorry they get to take their pictures and I never see them again!

Drawing People Pictures

Click for some pictures