Cartooning and Drawing – A Wonderful Gift


Late last week I went to empty my pigeon-hole to find a large package in it.  There and then I tore (it was well sealed) it open to discover three books on cartooning.  Initially I though they were unsolicited but on reading the accompanying letter I discovered they were a gift from Martin Brown (illustrator of Horrible Histories) via The Scottish Book Trust.  I was absolutely delighted to receive this gift.  The letter from The Scottish Book Trust states:

Martin had an absolutely brilliant time meeting pupils in Orkney and Shetland and was overwhelmed by the warm welcome and enthusiasm which greeted him at every school.

As a thank you, and to continue the drawing craze in Orkney and Shetland, Martin would like to gift your school a set of books about drawing and cartooning to add to the library.  We hope that your pupils will treasure these books and that they will further inspire your young illustrators to get drawing!

Back in May, he visited Stromness Academy and other schools in Orkney and Shetland as part of the Scottish Friendly Children Book Tour.  Stromness Primary School pupils also joined us for this event in the theatre.

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Thank you Martin and The Scottish Book Trust for this wonderful addition to our library.

Illustrator, Martin Brown, to Visit Stromness Academy

Last term, we successfully applied to the Scottish Friendly Children’s Book Tour (Scottish Book Trust) to have illustrator, Martin Brown visit the school. He is most well known for illustrating the Horrible Histories series of books published by Scholastic.

S2 and S2 pupils will be participating and we will also be welcoming P5,6 & 7 pupils from Stromness Primary school.

He will be visiting on Monday 11th May. The event will be held in the theatre during Periods 6 and 7.

From the Scottish Book Trust website (with permission) :

In May 2015 the Scottish Friendly Children’s Book Tour will be visiting Primary and Secondary Schools in Orkney and Shetland with the brilliant Martin Brown!

Best known as the illustrator for the hugely popular Horrible Histories series, Martin’s drawings have brought the foul facts and nasty nuggets of history to life for millions of children.

As well as sharing wicked, weird and wonderful tales from history, Martin will talk to your pupils about how an illustration for a Horrible Histories book happens – from author’s text, to ideas, through looking at references to the finished drawing – before encouraging your pupils to create drawings of their own. Guaranteed to be lots of fun and to leave your pupils itching to draw more, this is a fantastic opportunity for your pupils to meet the illustrator of one of the best loved series in (horrible) history!


Local Illustrator Visits

Friday 16th March saw local cartoonist and illustrator, Tony O’Donnell visiting the library’s Manga/Graphic Novel Club. Tony is known for doing work on The Beano‘s ‘Ivy the Terrible’ and has illustrated a number of books as well as carrying out freelance portrait, comic strip, logo design and caricature work, tutoring evening classes and running a local youth club.

Due to the nature of the split lunch there were two distinct sessions. The first let pupils have a look at and discuss Tony’s earlier work, as well as how looking at how comics are put together. The second session got the pupils and staff learning how to draw a comic superhero and a face, looking at the correct proportions.

Pupils were wholly engaged and focussed on what they were doing and the feeling was that they would have liked to have had longer but afternoon classes beckoned.

Some comments:



“Really fun and interesting. Art was awesome”

“It was really fun and informative. The artwork was brilliant! We got the chance to draw oursevles.”

“Excelently fun”