My Creative Team

Everyone needs a little help sometimes and I’m lucky to have family and friends who encourage me to do what I love. I call these people my Creative Team (a.k.a my family). They are very patient when I don’t know how to do something, and don’t mind that I make mistakes – they tell me that’s how you learn. They often say, ‘Never be afraid to try something different.’ I think that’s great advice.

Author/Illustrator Tina Wilson sitting with her mother's knitted creations for the children's picture book series, Monkey's Great Adventures.

Mum (Tina Wilson)

My mum helps me with my words and pictures. I’ve got lots of story ideas but I’m still learning how to put them down onto paper. Mum uses something she calls “storyboarding” and “design” to help bring my ideas to life. 

And even though I have a camera, I can’t take photos of myself, so mum does that for me, I try my best to pose in the right way for her. 

Mum says she is a freelance artist. When I asked her what that is she said it means she does lots of different jobs for lots of different people. Sometimes she paints or draws pictures, other times she designs books and other cool things. She has even created a portrait prize!  

Mum loves writing, illustrating, publishing books … and drinking chai! 

Learn more about my mum here:

Australian composer Matt Ottley sitting at his piano

Dad (Matt Ottley) 

My dad writes and draws too, and lots of people know him for this (he’s won lots of award!), but his favourite thing of all is to make music. He plays piano and guitar, but the most amazing thing is that he can make music in his head!

Dad says this is called composing, which means when he draws little black dots and lines on pieces of lined paper, other musicians can play it. I don’t know how they do it.

When dad read my first story, he asked me if he could make some music to go with it. He said it would be fun and make everyone want to dance. He was right. I love it. 

My dad has a great website with lots of pictures and music. You can even listen to some of his other work. It’s not all for children like me but I’m sure you will like it.

See what he does here:

Nanna (Joan Wilson)

My Nanna is very clever. She can paint, crochet, sculpt, carve, garden, write and knit!

She makes amazing things out of leather, clay, wood, matchsticks, paper, beads and tin, but most of all she loves to make things out of wool. She has piles and piles of bright coloured wool all over her house. She makes all my clothes (which are colorful and comfy) and even though she lives a long way away from me, she sends me knitted gifts by mail. Nanna tried to teach me how to knit once but I got tangled up in all the wool. What a mess! I might leave that hobby for Nanna.

Nanna loves doing lots of creative things, but the one thing she doesn’t like is cooking! She told me she’d rather knit than make dinner.

Nanna loves the olden days and has written books with lots of facts in them about the Snake Valley goldfields (that’s a place where you can find lots of gold) and some of the disasters that happened there. 

Nanna doesn’t have her own website but my friend Jenny Botje has written all about her in the Teacher Resources for Afloat in Venice