Hobbies: Mess, mayhem and noise!

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  I like nothing more than having a giggle, heading outside, getting the old vinyls out, or creating musical chaos!!!sarah-leigh-wills-childrens-illustrator-2016

Im not the most serious of characters!! As you can probably tell….! I’m VERY bubbly, full of life and can NEVER sit still (or be quiet infact!) I like a good laugh and am not afraid of making a fool of myself. I’m a country girl and love nothing better than spending time outside walking, messing around and just enjoying life! I have a big love of music, and have a severe love of MARMITE….. Especially straight out the jar!! mmmmm…. !

That aside for a second,  here’s a few things about me, and what I get up to when I’m not in my office drawing or getting paint all over the place!!

My Artwork…

I have spent many years around animals, spending 10 years on a farm, showing and breeding them. But these days I just love drawing them! I have a passion and a gift (passed down from my father) ‘THE DRAWING HAND’ – I like to call it! So when I am not focusing on client projects I like to spend some time on my own little ideas and projects.

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(Illustrating, I Love drawing animals with a passion!)

Gillie can Series…gillie-can-series

For years I have been designing and illustrating books for other authors…. So I have decided to pop on the authors cap for a change and create & write my own Gillie Can. Its a new Children’s book series aimed specifically at Early years. Producing board books that will encourage young children to learn and to have confidence in themselves. Learn with Gillie.

Me & BarryMy love of music…

I have music on from the moment I wake up till the moment I nod off… LITERALLY!! I live and breath the stuff! It started from a young age, when I would spend the weekends with my dad and we would go through his record collection. I would spend hours and hours sitting with headphones on, going through them all. Ever since then I have grown a love for it! Myself and my husband Barry (who’s also music mad) now have a HUGE collection of our own, and we love nothing better than putting a vinyl or 2 on! Beats the tele hands down!

My favourite bands…

I have a broad love of music. Anything with a decent beat and melody, pretty much floats my boat… for example I love a good wiggle to a bit of 80’s electro but also like a nice relax to say… a bit of Bob Dylan. I pretty much like ALL music, apart from rap/clubbing tunes! (not really my thing) I’m always off to local gigs, and off to see live bands play! I love the atmosphere of a live gig! you cant beat it!

I’m also a HUGE 60’s, 70’s & 80’s music fan,  I love the clothing (yes I do own/wear mostly 60s/80s clothes!) and I particularly love the bands and artists of the eras! Some of my favourites include: Marc Bolan, David Bowie, Steve Harley, ELO, Mamas & Papas, OMD and Kate Bush…. you get the picture! Just pretty much ANYTHING in the 60’s & 80’s…. and 70s I guess!! 😀

My love of making NOISE!…

Yep. I do….. I play the electronic drums, Synthesiser and I am also learning to play the Bass and…. yep, Banjo!! Well trying too!! haha.

So when I’m not sate behind a desk, I play in a band! Me and my husband have set up Manoeuvres – A tribute to the one and only Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark! I am a MASSIVE OMD fan, Their music is like no other and you can usually find me in my studio with one of their albums on listening to some obscure electro synth stuff! 😀

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I like to dabble with needle felting too…!

I have since discovered that not only can I make things come alive on paper, but in fact I can now create them in 3D… in felt!

I commissioned a friend to make a set of characters last year and when i looked at them, I wondered… hmmm? Perhaps I can do that! So I brought a starter kit… ignored the instructions and awaiting I went! And I love it!

The studio piglets!

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How could I almost nearly forget to mention these little pickles! Oh my… these are my little studio helpers! They even have their own page on here… Have a peep. When I’m stuck for ideas they help get me back into the swing of things!! (yep they are my little time outs!)

We rescued these little piglets late last year. They have brought a lot of fun and giggles into our lives and we are just so blessed to have them 🙂

Well we all have a wild side… mines just literally! but on a serious (ish) note… all the fun aside I am a very professional designer and illustrator and would love you to get in touch if you have any work or projects you wish me to get involved with!

Looking forward to talking to you!

A few of my previous clients

happydesigner clients

  • “Sarah’s advice has been invaluable, she could have just illustrated my first attempt but knew there was more to be had from the story and pointed me towards the right help." – Darron Jon Love

  • "Sarah is amazing - very fast at understanding the requirements, great pictures and never too much trouble. I recommend her wholeheartedly" - Fernando Caldeira-Saraiva
  • Sarah really understood the brief right from the beginning and has been able to translate my ideas and mental images, that at times were quite specific, into magical illustrations that are better than I’d ever hoped. She has absolutely nailed it!” – Gareth Edwards

  • "Sarah loves her work, her friendly ‘can do’ approach is reassuring whether you’re on your first or tenth book."  – Darron Jon Love
  • "I hope my recommendation will persuade you to use Sarah! I cannot fault her, for her professionalism, enthusiasm and talent." - Michelle Hawkins, Director: The Flying DoDo

  • “Thank you, Sarah, for the amazing work you did on the illustrations for my book. Working with you has been so easy thanks to your enthusiasm, flexibility, support, professionalism and, of course, the amazing quality of your work." – Stuart Neath

  • "WOW! Love it! I'm so happy with what you've produced- and with so little input from me. FANTASTIC!!! THANK YOU” - Darren Pascoe: 'Red Rabbit Book'

  • Sarah is an extremely talented designer and illustrator. She has that rare gift of being able to find something in your business or character that you never knew existed" Craig Green

  • “I was so nervous ringing you as i've never done anything like this before, but you were so friendly and put me completely at ease.” - Donna Purvis

  • Sarah has a great insight into how to best produce a children’s book and is really helpful in getting you there! I really cannot recommend Sarah enough – brilliant designer, friendly and professional. The experience has been a great one!“ – Jodie Jackson
  • "Outstanding illustrator with exceptional talent. You couldn’t wish for a better artist, as it would be impossible to find. Such a spectacular gifted designer who is always happy!" - Rachel Lake

  • "She has a keen eye for the quirky detail, she is punctual and a joy to work with. I simply cannot praise her enough.” - Clickety Books

  • "Sarah quickly understood what I wanted to achieve and the look I was after. Sarah kept me informed and brought me into the whole process” – Darron Jon Love

  • “Sarah was lovely to work with and keen to make sure that the illustrations were a perfect match for the story. It’s obvious that she really cares about her work and wants you, the author, to be happy with the final results.” – Marion Adams

  • “Books arrived safely today- I am absolutely delighted with how they look – I can’t thank you enough – you’ve made my dream come true :)” – Jane Collins

  • “When we first contacted Sarah, Dainty Dizzy was a concept;  an idea to be shaped into a brand.  Sarah took this idea and illustrated it perfectly….and our brand look and feel was born.” – Dainty Dizzy

  • "I can’t speak highly enough of Sarah! She has brought Roopert Snoopert to life in a way I could never have imagined.
    The illustrations are fantastic! Sarah keeps you update with progress from the draft stage right through to sign off." - Paul Micklewright
  • “I am so happy that I found Sarah to bring my book to life. Sarah took the time to listen and really made the effort to make sure that I was happy and her brilliant designs translated the words of my book into a beautiful visual story." - Jodie Jackson

  • "Sarah understood what I was looking for and produced a fantastic logo for me.  She is very approachable and friendly – I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend her” Katie Jarvis, Fancy Prints

  • "These posters and flyers are perfect”
    - Julia G, Manager at the Truro branch of Pets at Home

  • Sarah is professional, friendly and very knowledgeable, she delivered 100% with a new logo that was spot on! We can't recommend her enough!” - Lucy @ Get Active

  • "It's been great working with Sarah as our illustrator! She's been so great in taking all feedback on board and delivers work of the highest standard. Would 100% recommend :-)" - Michelle Gibbs, Doodle Dozen Series
  • “Sarah’s re-branding of my business has given it a much needed fresh and quirky feel. She provided us with an extremely friendly courteous and efficient service and injected an energy into the project, that only Sarah could.” – Discovery Leisure

  • "The logos are absolutely fantastic, they are spot on brief and are even better than we imagined!Paolo Pini, Step Up To Languages