Presenter: Sarah Davis


Sarah was born in London, and spent her childhood in America, Sweden, and finally NZ where she spent a lot of time digging for worms, chasing sheep, falling in rivers - and of course, doodling endlessly. She now spends her time in Sydney digging for ideas, chasing her 3 children, spilling pots of paint - and doodling endlessly. 

She has an honours degree in literature, and as a qualified secondary teacher taught English, creative writing and art in NZ secondary schools for 5 years. In 2004 Sarah moved to Sydney and began freelancing in commercial illustration for advertising, film, editorial publishing, and toy design. She worked as an in-house designer for The Book Company, and as as art director and senior illustrator for Childhood Heroes, producing books in association with high profile sports stars such as Tim Cahill, Brett Lee, and UK footballers Steven Gerrard and Rio Ferdinand. In July 2009, she threw herself into illustrating picture books full time.

She began illustrating for children in 2007 and has since collaborated with several well known Australian and NZ authors.

Sarah adapts her style to suit the essential qualities of an author's text, so her work ranges from emotionally charged realistic oils to quirky digital cartoons. She also handles the design and layout for most of the books she illustrates, so can speak about the process of creating a book right up until it goes to press. 

As a self-taught illustrator and designer she is constantly on the hunt for more information, better methods, or cunning new tricks. She can share the thrills and spills of this process of discovery with students, and help them see art as a fun, messy, exciting adventure. She enjoys building students' confidence in their own abilities, and giving them freedom to let their own imaginations off the leash.

Sarah was awarded the CBCA’s 2009 Crichton Award for her first picture book, the beautiful, haunting Mending Lucille, by J.R. Poulter (Lothian/Hachette Livre), which was released in 2008. Her latest awards include: Toucan Can! - Shortlisted for the New Zealand Post Book of the Year Awards 2014, A Storylines Notable Book 2014, and Violet Mackerel’s Possible Friend - Notable Book  CBCA  Book of the Year Awards 2014 and Shortlisted CBCA  Book of the Year Awards 2014.

You can find Sarah on her web page:

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