Murals with PJ Lynch

Photo PJ took just as Niamh and myself began to work on our walls.

As part of his Laureate na n√ďg Big Picture project, my good pal and birthday bud, PJ Lynch took on the task of organising SIX permanent murals (or muriels, as we say in Dublin) for a school in Cork, the very lovely Gaelscoil Mhainistir na Corann in Midleton. He invited Niamh Sharkey, Chris Judge, Lauren O’Neill, Michael and myself to join him and each take on a wall. Here are some photos of each mural as it happened, from blank to finished – click on the first photo to get larger images and some notes on what’s happening. Then keep clicking right.

PJ’s wall; The Children of Lir

Niamh’s wall; the King of Ireland

Lauren’s wall; Gulliver in Lilliput

Chris’s wall; Irish Creatures, Past & Present

My wall; image from The Long March

The school requested an image from my book The Long March (see two previous blogposts) as Midleton is home to the Feathers sculpture which commemorates the Choctaw gift to Ireland in 1847.

The whole team -Niamh Sharkey, Chris Judge, Jenny Murray (CBI), Lauren O’Neill, me, Aingeala (L na n√ďg project manager), PJ Lynch – Laureate na n√ďg.

Aingeala and Jenny looked after us so well (of course) and the school laid on a constant supply of sandwiches and scones and smiles and encouragement plus a laughter-filled night with the teachers at Muinteoir Gr√°inne’s on Saturday night. Unfortunately Michael was sick – whooping cough – and missed the trip, but he will tackle a wall for the school in May or June. We’ll add photos then.

Top photo of Niamh and myself beginning our murals is one PJ quietly snapped from the return of the stairs.

Teeny Tiny Ting



I spotted¬†this tiny handmade book necklace online;¬†I thought it would be nice to wear to book events. When it arrived and I held it in my hand, it¬†occurred to me I could actually draw tiny pictures in it…I drew one and got¬†Michael to draw a couple. When¬†the Emberleys were visiting¬†I asked Ed and Rebecca to add something.¬†Since then I’ve¬†asked several ¬†illustrator friends to draw in it, so now its pages are almost filled with teeny illustrations.

Everyone I ask has the same reaction. They stop – blink – think! It takes a bit of refocusing and mental rescaling to draw something on this tiny canvas.

I was cheeky enough to ask Jim Kay and Mo Willems to draw in it when I attended talks they gave and have every intention of being cheeky a few more times until every page is illustrated –¬†there are a few Irish illustrators I’ve yet to nab. My little necklace has become a¬†favourite treasure – here are some of the¬†images.¬†Look¬†how HUGE my fingers are;¬†these¬†are TINY images!

You can click on any illustration¬†for a larger image, then scroll/click on side to look at the¬†next one, and illustrator’s name¬†should appear too.

All these little illustrations are reproduced with permission and are © of named illustrator.