2017 V&A Winner: Profiling Jarvis

Earlier this year, Jarvis won the coveted V&A award for his picture book, Alan, and his Big Scary Teeth, published by Walker. This November, he’s been nominated for a Kate Greenaway Medal for the brilliant Mrs Mole, I’m Home, also with Walker Books.

Jarvis - Mrs Mole, I'm Home

In case you’re unfamiliar with Jarvis, here’s a little more to get your teeth into . . .

Have you heard about Alan, and his BIG SCARY TEETH?!

Alan is big and scary… Those teeth. Although — things in the jungle aren’t quite what they seem and the plot twist is so joyous, you will be rolling around laughing along with your children. The wonderful thing, and the triumph of winning this (V&A) award, is the story behind the book — that all in fact was nearly lost with Alan, when only days before giving the final artwork to his publisher at Walker Books, Jarvis’ studio was burgled.

“My studio was burgled and everything was taken – my computer, back-ups, scanner, lightbox, everything! I didn’t have it backed up online so I had lost the entire book. It all seems like a bad dream now but I had to re-do the entire book from scratch. I can’t say I enjoyed that, but I’m impressed that I was able to just re-do it and in many parts it was better. The irony is that the plot of the book is about stealing!” Jarvis

Last year saw Jarvis and Alan’s Big Scary Teeth in the spotlight a number of times, beginning with the front page of The New York Times

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Alan’s Big Scary Teeth also featured in the Best Books for Children, Spring Editor’s Picks on Amazon.com and was chosen for the Bookstart Treasure Pack, sent to pre-schoolers aged 3-4 across the country. Read the Bookseller article here. 

Jarvis has collaborated with a number of authors including Jeanne Willis, Steven Butler and Patricia Toht:

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Poles Apart [Nosy Crow]; Odd Bods [Puffin]; Pick a Pine Tree [Walker] Read more on the making of Odd Bods with Steven Butler and Jarvis here.

And he has some award-winning fans:

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Taken from Yasmeen Ismail’s Instagram account [Author and illustrator of V&A award winner, Time for Bed Fred! Published by Bloomsbury]

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An activity sheet by Jarvis for The Book Trust.

Jarvis spends much of his spare time doing workshops and events — his most recent being an incredible Christmas window [based on his recent picture book with Patricia Toht, Pick a Pine Tree, published by Walker Books] for the Tate Modern Bookshop — well worth a visit if you’re in the London area for the holiday season 

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If you’d like to work with Jarvis, you can get in touch via his agent, Arabella Stein, here.

You can also follow Jarvis on Twitter and Instagram.