Local author pens new children's book
A new picture book by local author and illustrator Cara Lockhart Smith has just been published by Moonwuzo Press.
The Midnight Hare tells the story of a boy, Milo, who runs after a small brown hare, whom he loves, but who always escapes. Then, one night, Milo is taken on a moonlit journey over the Borderlands by the great, pale Midnight Hare. They fly over hills and valleys to a strange garden, where Milo encounters a situation where he needs to show courage and resolve.
The landscape of the Borders is the setting of the story, a place where Cara has lived for many years.
The core of the story was written quickly, in a morning and an afternoon, but it took a long time to find a way of creating the illustrations.
In the end it was painted with gouache paint on coloured paper, a technique Cara used many years ago but which she abandoned in favour of sepia pens and watercolour. The disappearance of the particular sepia drawing pen that she loved to use to some extent prompted a change of technique.
However, painting a big pale hare needed some kind of tinted background in order for his fur to stand out, and after trying out different techniques, one day she did a small scribble in gouache on a piece of brown paper, and knew at once that this was the way she wanted to express the imagery of the story.
Cara, who used to live in Berwick but is now in Coldstream, has written and illustrated many other books, including local stories published by Serafina Press.
The Midnight Hare has been printed by Martins the Printers in Spittal, who produced all the Serafina Press books.
The Berwick Bear and His Fiddle, is now in its second printing.
Bear in a Boat in the Borders, which she wrote with Jennifer Doherty and illustrated herself, has also been popular, being the story of a journey down the length of the Tweed, from Tweed Well to Berwick. Jennifer and Cara spent a day tracing this journey, taking photographs all along the way.
Cara also illustrated The Eyemouth Mermaid by Jennifer Doherty, set on the day of the crowning of the Salmon Queen.