Meeting Quentin Blake!

(portrait by Perry Hastings)

This summer, I was beyond thrilled to meet my absolute hero Quentin Blake at the opening of his new exhibition in the Heong Gallery at Downing College. His drawings have been a constant for me through a very unconventional childhood. They brought me a lot of joy (still do) and I’ve always wanted to work as loosely and as lightly as he does.

I met him for the first time when I was 5, at a Puffin Club exhibition. I asked him to draw me a picture of a postman, and he did. When we moved to Africa a few years later, the picture was put in a big atlas for safe keeping. But unfortunately, that
atlas was taken to the charity shop. 🙁

When I was an undergraduate at Cambridge, I wrote to Quentin and told him the story. He wrote me a long letter back, with a new drawing for me. He told me he recognized my address and thought he’d lived in the same student room as me, on Park Terrace.
So, at the Heong Gallery, I told him how much his work has inspired me, and thanked him. And gave him a teatowel! Might even have got a bit emotional!

Excuse the blurry photo!

SO excited to get a hand written card from Sir Quentin Blake in the post. And he even says he likes my bicycle drawing!