This wonderful collaboration has been
really hard to keep under wraps for the last few months. I am such an
advocate of female writers, female artists and basically female anything
so when I learnt that the Baileys Prize wanted to work with me to
create six unique illustrations based around the shortlisted book covers
I jumped at the chance.
Baileys Women’s Prize for Fiction is one of the most prestigious
literary awards – previously called the Orange Prize for Fiction – and
as someone who probably reads a book a week this was perfect for me.
So you can imagine the collaboration sparked my creativity combining my love of books and drawing. The books
and illustrations will be divided up into three posts with no real
order, and over the next few days you will be in with the chance of
winning yourself the whole stack of shortlisted books!
up, and probably my favorite so far to illustrate, is Do Not Say We
Have Nothing, by Madeleine Thien. This book is set in Canada with a
narration that really pulls the reader in as young Marie and her mother
invite a Chinese lady who has fled the Tiananmen Square protest. For the
illustration I wanted to bring in the patterns and traditional tea that
China is well known for. I enjoyed being able to put elements of the
book into the illustration.
up is the beautifully written Stay With Me, by Ayobami Adebayo. Now
this book cover totally appealed to me straight away, who doesn’t love a
palm leaf or two?! But hidden behind the beautiful cover lies a story
of jealousy, betrayal and despair. Set in Nigeria in the 1980’s at a
very turbulent time, Ayobami Adebayo is the same age as me and this
beautifully written piece of fiction surpasses someone of her age. I
tried to create a peaceful illustration opposed to the story that’s
filled with heart break. I decided complementary and calming colours would look best alongside my signature floral and palm design.
You can find out more about the books shortlisted for the Baileys Women’s Prize for Fiction 2017 here.
I have a
further 4 more illustrations to share over the coming days before the
winner is announced on Wednesday. Follow me and Baileys Women’s Prize
for Fiction on Instagram and Twitter – @_ellamasters_ and @baileysprize. *
*Illustration and post have been sponsored but all illustrations and words are my own