And the winner is ….

Salvatore Rubbino! He won the IBW children’s book award. CONGRATULATIONS! “A Walk in Paris” is a beautiful book publish by Walker Books, so let the best one win!



Meanwhile  I have to be happy with being shortlisted with “The Mouse Who Ate the Moon”. And I’m happy!petr horacek

People running independent book shops are people who know their books and they are good at what they do.

They have to be since it is not easy to be able to compete with big booksellers these days . You have to put in a bit extra to stand out.


Over the last couple of weeks I was painting a farmer’s family for my next book11and I also finished a couple of illustrations for Nicola Davies’ and my book “My First Book of Animals”.

oatritch an hummingbirdHere is an ostrich and a hummingbird. Did you know that a hummingbird is as big as an aye of an ostrich?

Sea turtleI have painted little turtles

Owland a big owl.Screen Shot 2015-06-28 at 15.43.12I love Nicola’s poems. The text is inspiring me to do my best.

antsHere are ants.

I know woods in the Czech Republic where ants’ nests are so big that they can reach up to my waist and I’m quite a tall man.

Komodo dragon 2.uncropedTalking big, here is a Komodo dragon and a drawing of a sleeping lion.Lion I’m also finishing off pictures of bees, elephants, monkeys but more about that next time.IMG_0168Just one more picture. This is a new fan of board books – Guy Harrison. He knows a good book when he sees it!

Showing pictures

IMG_0613Claire Harrison – “Gate at the Other World” mixed media

Mark and Clare de la Torre, Adrienne Craddock, Claire Harrison and I are having exhibition!

One always forgets how much work it is to get everything together, frame and hang the pictures, make invitations and invite people, buy wine and food…and have a PARTY!

The private view was last Friday. The weather was fabulous. Lots of people came and the evening was great.


Here is the display of the beautiful jewellery made by Clare de la Torre. My paintings are hanging on the wall.

Over the weekend five of us were making coffee, pouring wine and chatting to people who came to see our work.IMG_0597 copy

This is display of Mark’s pots and lamps. The paintings are done by my wife Claire Harrison.IMG_0607I decided to exhibit some of my illustrations from books and also some of my small paintings and drawings on vellum.



There was enough space for my tigersWalking Tiger

and even more space for my big paintings.From the GardenThese are three swimming giraffes.

Three swimming giraffesThe picture called “Late Breakfast” was finished only a couple of days before the exhibition. It’s one of a series of ten pictures. I named the series “Interiors”.

Late breakfastThe exhibition will be on for one more weekend, so come to see us if you can! The opening time is Saturday and Sunday from 11am to 6pm.

p.h. Exhibition





p.h. ExhibitionWe are having an exhibition! As the poster says it will run for two weekends 6-7th and 13-14th June.

Mark de la Torre is a great potter.satin-stainlesslgClare de la Torre makes beautiful jewellery. netsukelg

Adrienne Craddock is a brilliant printer and painter.


Claire Harrison is a painter. I love her work and not just because Claire is my wife!


Some time ago, when we were discussing the possibility of having an exhibition, I was thinking: “Shall I show my illustrations, or shall I exhibit my paintings?”  Then I looked at my work and realised that these two are getting closer together these days.In the CloudsI have less time for painting big pictures and I spend lots of time traveling around schools and book festivals talking to children. I do get inspired by children’s work and drawings. Sometimes their sketches make it in to my paintings.

PUFFIN - paintingI also get inspired by some of my illustrations and take them a bit further. Kitten (Kocicka)

Bird on ScooterI call this series of ten paintings “Interiors”.

Birds on ChairRecently I was also painting on pieces of vellum. The small paintings are inspired by notes and sketches from my small sketchbooks. They are silly ideas and dreams.

Here is “Mammoth hunters”.Mamuth hunters“A Falling Giraffe”falling giraffe..and “Something else”.

RunI framed these small drawings in deep frames.p. horacek

It was good fun to get ready for the exhibition and Mark and I made ceramics together as well. Well, Mark did the hard bit – the pots – and I just drew on them. They are not completely finished yet. We still have a couple of days!

I think that’s all about the exhibition. I hope you can make it.

Oh, yes I did an interview for KINDERLIT.  There is also a nice little introduction to Czechoslovakian illustration.

The Fly and the window in Dublin.

image3Two exciting things happened recently. The first one is the publication of my book “The Fly” in U.S.A.


The Fly is a book I had published 2010. It took me a couple of years to persuade my publisher to do a book about a fly. The publisher’s argument was, that people don’t like flies; therefore they will not buy the book. It’s true and this is the way the market works.

Paradoxically that’s also what the book is about. About how difficult it is to be a fly.

5I like the book. It was really fun to work on it and whenever I do a public reading this book gets most laughter.

The book is now officially out in America and so far has very a good response. It makes me happy.

petr horacek

Here is one of the pictures of the fly which was given to me by a young enthusiast.


The other exciting thing was my trip to Dublin. Going to Dublin, from where I live, takes only a couple of hours, but I had never been there before. I had no idea how much I’d been missing!

Dublin is amazing, so trendy, and full of lovely people, a great atmosphere and lots to see.

I was there to take part in Dublin Literary Festival. I did three talks and three workshops. It all went pretty well. “The Ark”, the place where most of the children’s events took place is a brilliant place. Perfect for shows, talks and workshops.

The whole festival was very well organised.

It wasn’t just work. Together with fellow authors, we were well looked after and taken around Dublin.

I managed to see Chris Haughton’s talk, which was really good fun and his illustrations on the big screen looked amazing!


I Went to Nicola Davies‘ talk. Nicola knows so much about animals that you could listen to her for the whole day. A real treat.


And I also saw the brilliant Gary Northfield in action. He ran on to the stage dressed as Julius Zebra and I laughed a lot. Unfortunately soon I had to also run, because I had one more event to do, but next time when Gary is a Zebra, I go again!


I was asked to decorate a shop window in one of the best bookshops I’ve been to recently. The Hodges Figgis bookshop in central Dublin.image5

The shop is big and incredibly busy. I was signing books for stock on Saturday afternoon and couldn’t believe when I saw a long queue of people trying to quickly buy a book just before the shop closed for the night. People in Dublin do like books a lot!


IMG_0992My installation was about my latest picture book “The Mouse Who Ate the Moon”.

And the last information is……. I’m going to be in this exhibition!



ExhibitionMore about it later, but mark the date in the calendar if you can!


Talking about books

FullSizeRenderTwo school visits this week. I was in the lovely Portway Infant School in Andover. In fact it was my second visit there in two years, so it was like coming home. Lovely teachers and nice children. We made a picture with flying animals. It was a busy, but a great day!


On Thursday I went to Rowan Prep School in Claygate in Surrey. Another nice school where I was once before. Rowan Prep School is a girls’ school and they invited children from a couple of neighbouring schools to join us. It was a nice day. Hot dogs and ice cream were served and we all made little picture books about puffins.FullSizeRender_2

I love the whale in this book …IMG_0579 and this one.IMG_0577 This cat is black and white, just like Paul, but she is not a puffin.

I just came home from SWINDON FESTIVAL OF LITERATUREI did an event in Lower Shaw Farm and was welcomed there by nice man Mat Holland who has been running the festival for twenty two years.

The place has a great atmosphere and people who come to such events make a wonderful audience. I went to see the puppet show “Three Billy Pigs” by fabulous Noisy Oyster.IMG_0583I enjoyed the show very much and so did everybody who was there.noisy oisterA good end to the weekend.

Next time I’ll be at the International Literature Festival in Dublin. The list of events is huge. I’m going to be in Dublin from Friday to Monday. I’ve never been before, so I’m very excited!



Nice Post

I got nice post this weekend. An advance copy of my new book.the mouse who reached the sky      “The Mouse Who Reached the Sky” is coming out soon!

Last week I went to King’s Oak Primary Learning Centre in Barnsley. Nice day in the nice school. Children worked very hard and did great pictures. I got lots of drawings to take home.IMG_0856I love this one. It’s me getting ready to demonstrate how to mix colours. The proportion of me to the children is accurate.

IMG_0855I forgot to ask what this picture is about, but I like it all the same.

IMG_0854Another master piece. This drawing reminds me of drawings by Rodger Hilton.

IMG_0853My favourite is this picture. It’s me fishing from the moon. I don’t know where the idea came from, but it’s rather poetic.

For the rest of the week I was working on my new book “Greedy Goat”.skica kozy

Sketching and developing the character.IMG_0868I’m enjoying it so much!IMG_0872This is my favourite stage of making a book.

IMG_0894 I will need to spend more time drawing the farmer and his wife.

Well, that is it for this week…oh yes, one more tiger from Barnsley.IMG_0857