Thursday, 17 April 2014

Ladybird Book Nostalgia - part two

Hello everyone, and thanks so much for all your comments about my "What to look for in Winter" Ladybird book.

This time I would love to share some of the illustrations from my all-time favourite "What to look for in Autumn".  This book influenced a lot of my creative work when I was young, and the colours still inspire me to this day.  When  I was 13 I started painting in oils, and many of these illustrations served as images that I tried to re-create.  Some more successfully than others!

So sit back, grab a cuppa, and soak up all the Ladybird loveliness...

The cover is so inviting, just look at the detail, the misty background, the colours...

The opening pages, the owl is so finely observed...and just look at the wild clematis seed-heads....

Autumn crocus, have always wanted some of these in the garden.  And just look at that cheeky mouse!

I saw a stoat the other morning when driving to work, astonishing creatures, and very quick little movers!  And I must admit that as old as I am, I cannot resist picking up shiny new conkers when they litter the ground in the early autumn - such a shame that they don't stay shiny for Darling Mum has a large conker tree in her garden, grown from a conker my brother planted when he was a toddler...

Love this illustration of the pheasants, although they can be quite a menace when driving along country roads, they have a terrible habit of leaping out of the undergrowth and throwing themselves towards the car!  But here they look quite magnificent...

This is quite probably my favourite illustration, the colours and perspective are amazing.  I can never go to a Bonfire Party without wondering if a wise old owl is somewhere in the trees watching us having fun...

There are a lot of birch trees in our local Outwoods, so we often see these bracket fungi growing on the trunks.  Sadly we only rarely see woodpeckers...

The final illustration as Autumn slip-slides into Winter...

I hope you have enjoyed this wander down memory lane with me!

Would love to hear about your favourite books from childhood.



  1. WOW, Helen! No wonder you love these illustrations. I do too, now that you've made me aware of them. Have you read Make Way for Ducklings by Robert McCloskey or the Little House on the Prairie books by Laura Ingalls Wilder? Those are books I have read countless times and enjoy the sketched illustrations as much as the stories! Happy time off, and blessings to you and yours this Easter and beyond :) xx

  2. I can see why you love those books and how those wonderful illustrations inspired you to paint! Do you have any of your work from those days to show us? I liked the Henry Higgins books. And Nancy Drew!

    ((hugs)), Teresa :-)

  3. I loved these books too, and all the detail in the illustrations inspired me as well! Wishing you a Happy Easter.
    Helen xox

  4. Lovely illustrations. I don't remember any books from early childhood, but at the age of 12, I did read every single Nancy Drew and Hardy Boys book I could get my hand on at the school library. I took art in middle school but didn't keep up with it. I used to love to draw and paint and would buy books and oil pastels. When I taught kindergarten I drew all the time. But once you get out of the practice, it is hard to get back into it again or feel that you even remember how to draw. :) Have a wonderful weekend. Tammy

  5. Ooo thankyou so much for posting in these, I had lots of Ladyburd books like these when I was little, I wonder if I have any in the house where I now live ? My Mum gave me a box of some of my old books. Must have a rummage! Thankyou !

  6. I loved and love these books Helen and still collect them if i see them in cs. Loved looking through this one,this is one i havent found ,yet :) wishing you a happy easter,xxx


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