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Introducing ... Baby Tempi

Hello again!

I’ve been busy over the past couple of months with my newest children’s book project. As some of you may know, I have been working on a children’s book called Tempi for the past few years. I’ve gradually come to the realisation that a full 32-page children’s book is quite a big undertaking for someone who only gets to do illustration work in my spare time (usually between 5 and 7am during the summer months!), outside of my full-time librarian job. Me being me, I was comparing my progress with what full-time illustrators achieve, and I kept feeling like I was falling behind.

The character of Tempi himself is a good stand-in for me and my work. Tempi is a young Hoffman’s two-toed sloth, and although he thinks he’s not fast enough to play music, his slow and steady process gets results in the end. It’s a story about the creative process, and the bumps in the road to creating something really special to share with your community.

In April, I kept thinking of ways I could jump-start my illustration work, after taking a few months off in the winter. I decided to create a quick mini-book, that would still fit into the Tempi extended universe. I have friends with toddlers, and I had the idea to create an early-years book about Tempi when he was a baby. Of course, baby sloths get up to even less than young adult sloths, or most human toddlers, so the story would be very simple. Tempi’s story is at heart one of resilience, so I had the idea of Tempi having a slightly unpleasant surprise, and recovering from it with the help of his mom.

I was also inspired by a new baby sloth at London Zoo, Elio. We visited on 19 May and saw Elio napping, and briefly waking up to yawn. I took a video, which I put on Facebook here.

Baby sloth Elio at London Zoo

I’m still working on the final edits for Baby Tempi, but I hope to have it published by the end of the summer. In the meantime, here’s some sneak peeks of Baby Tempi!

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