The Stephen Joseph Theatre's Outreach Department recently launched an educational literacy project to accompany a new summer musical production of Alan Ackybourn's play "The Boy Who Fell Into a Book". For the project I accompanied Diana from the Outreach department on a number of workshops in Brompton and Snainton primary schools, working with the children to develop characters, settings and stories based on the themes of the play. The children worked the characters, etc into performances of their own, and I created illustrations based on what they came up with.
As a starting point I made a couple of sample characters/settings based on suggestions from Diana, then it was up to the children. They came up with monsters, robots, deadly chickens, giant cucumbers, poisonous injections, psycho killers, booby traps and much, much more. "The Boy Who Fell Into a Book" is on at the SJT in Scarborough until the end of August, and there's a display of the childrens work in the upper foyer for those who might want to see more. If I can I'll try and get some pictures to add to this page.
This was my first time working on this kind of project and it was a great deal of fun, very inspirational and something I'd hope to do again in the future.
Simon took our initial concept to very loose script and created a list of illustrations we needed to make our whiteboard video simply work. He delivered the first few illustrations in sketch form, and we knew he was going to nail it. On budget and on time every step of the way, Simon was not only a genius illustrator but a lovely person to work with. He has a talent for taking the everyday and making it sing. He delighted our audience with his clever and cute characters, and went beyond what we thought was even possible. We'd work with him again in a heartbeat. Jennifer del Greco, pndu.org