May we introduce you to the very lovely and extremely talented Mr. Chris Judge, illustrator and author of The Lonely Beast and The Great Explorer... and Adam Buxton's number one fan.
1. Describe yourself as a child in five words
Tall. Skinny. Cautious. Daydreamer. Lancelot Haircut.
2. When you were little what did you dream of being?
I always dreamed of being an astronaut or at the very least a passenger on a space craft visiting the moon. I'm still dreaming it will happen someday!
3. You're a graphic designer, illustrator, painter and author. You've had two children's picture books published - why did you start writing for children? What drew you to it?
I have always loved drawing and reading, and comics played a huge part in my life when I was growing up. My dad also wrote and drew lots of stories for myself and my brothers and sisters which influenced me to make my own stories and characters. I have always loved narrative in my artwork so it felt like a very natural step making picture books.
4. You're first book, The Lonely Beast, is about a big hairy creature on a quest to cure his loneliness. Where do you get your inspiration and ideas for your wonderful stories?
I have always loved monsters, robots and aliens so The Lonely Beast is kind of a distilled version of bigfoot, yetis, chewbacca and lots of other characters like that. The Yeti in Tintin in Tibet had a huge influence on me as a child and I drew him over and over. The Beast is a combination of all these things but it was only when I went to tell his story that I discovered his lonely and poignant personality.
5. What was your favourite picture book when you were little?
When I was very young my favourite books were anything by Richard Scarry. I still adore his books today. I then graduated to Tintin when I was about 10 and that changed everything for me.
6. We're lucky enough to have both your books in our collection. What do you like most about Me Books?
I really love that the essence of the original book is still the key thing, but once you start interacting with them there is so much more to discover. I really like how lighthearted they are too, and the fact that users can create their own dialogue and sounds effects is so much fun.
7. What are your opinions on the Print vs. Digital debate?
I am hugely excited about digital publishing and am really looking forward to embracing it and seeing where it takes us. I believe in time it will work in tandem with printed publishing rather than replacing it. I think people assumed film and TV would be the death of books and radio but that didn't happen, radio is even thriving now. Digital publishing is a whole other medium and will be very important for education and literacy, especially in the developing world. The next ten years will be very interesting.
Find out more about Chris and his work by visiting his website, http://chrisjudge.4ormat.com
The Lonely Beast and The Great Explorer are narrated by Adam Buxton and available in Me Books.