Illustrator of ‘The Glove’
Sarah Wilkins is a Wellington-based illustrator. After studying Visual Communication Design, Sarah put her best drawings into a portfolio and hopped on a plane to Melbourne where she began her career as a freelance illustrator, drawing pictures for books and magazines. After a few years and many illustrations later, she became eager for new things to draw so she took another plane, to Paris this time, and found out that illustrations are called illustrations there too...just pronounced with a nice French accent. Not speaking French very well at that stage, Sarah relied on her eyes to understand what people were saying to her. Which is sort of what you do when you look at an illustration. People liked Sarah’s way of seeing and drawing the world and started asking her to draw for them. Et voila….she became une illustratrice!
Now her illustrations can be seen around the world in the usual places such as on the pages of books, magazines and newspapers but also on some not so usual places such as 4 storey high walls in Paris, buses in Helsinki and bags in New York.
Her work has won awards in America, United Kingdom, Australia and New Zealand. She lives in Wellington, and sometimes Paris, with her husband and three children and is always eager for new things to draw.
'Madeleine L’Engle, Joan Aiken, Arthur Ransome, Enid Blyton and Noel Streatfield were among my favourite writers when I was about ten, but if I had to choose one favourite book from that time it would be From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs Basil E. Frankweiler by E. L. Konigsburg. I think I loved it first for its ridiculously long title, which came in handy when the charades craze hit our school, but then for the fascinating mystery of the brother and sister who run away from home and live in the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York for a week. It was the perfect story for someone interested in art and getting away from her family. As the middle child of seven, I often dreamt of running away to another life. My best friend at the time was an English girl who had lived in Trinidad and India before coming to New Zealand. I’d disappear to her house for days on end. We’d dress up in beautiful saris, drink eggnog and listen to records of Abba, The Beatles and the Rolling Stones on her orange portable turntable. The height of sophistication for a girl from Lower Hutt.'