Earlier this year my oldest friend, Kim Hunter Gamble, died. He was my first, longest and strongest inspiration. Kim followed me into illustration for children a little warily, since he really wanted to work as a fine artist, but he flourished in the field and contributed an enormous amount to publishing for children in Australia. He was best known for his work in the Tashi series (written by Anna and Barbara Fienberg). In primary schools all over Australia and beyond are examples of Tashi pastel drawings that he made with his big sturdy and pastel stained fingers for live audiences, while Anna read from her stories (the kids really were listening to you, Anna!).
To see one of these pictures emerge from a blank page was a special kind of magic. Kim and his magic will be missed deeply. Hooroo, big bad buddy.