Monday, 1 March 2021


Photos of author illustrator Paul Morton

Hi, I'm Paul Morton picture book creator and illustrator, author of Top Pond's greediest frog BUG BELLY.

Colour illustration of Bug Belly the frog

 Basically I like drawing. I also love making pictures and I have lots of stories to tell.

I didn't always produce children's books. You will probably have seen my illustrations on cereal boxes when you're having breakfast, or on a yummy chocolate bar wrapper.
illustrations of chocolate bars and cakes

Or even when you're playing a board game, the ones that come in boxes. I've drawn and painted the pictures for lots of those. Even some frog games like this one!

Feeding Froggies game box by Paul Morton

I also love inventing characters and I've created pandas, bees, chameleons, monsters and quite a few frogs. One frog in particular is my favourite of course. Yes, you guessed it, he's a very hungry frog called BUG BELLY.


Panda Pops characters by Paul Morton


Chameleon and Bizzi Bee illustrations by Paul Morton

I suppose Bug Belly is a bit like me when I was at school. Although I hope I wasn't SO greedy.



I usually begin a story by seeing pictures in my head (which is always a good start) and then it runs a bit like a film in my mind and I start to draw some of the scenes in my sketchbook. I ALWAYS carry a sketchbook around with me.
Drawing things that you see is so important to feel like you've been somewhere, but also drawing things that are only in your head is really important too.

Below is one of my sketchbook drawings I made when I first started thinking about Bug Belly and his adventures in babysitting trouble. Straightaway I imagined him surrounded by hundreds of little tadpoles, or taddies.
sketch showing Bug Belly book development
What if he had to round them all up and safely get them somewhere else. And what if time was running out too AND there was a hungry pike and a sneaky snake!! That's how Bug Belly grew. 1000's of drawings later and here's the book. Very satisfying to have it all wrapped up and contained in one little package.
I hope you enjoy reading it and looking at all the pictures. Can you spot your name in the long list of taddie names? And can you find the hidden worm?

Watch out for the next Bug Belly book (that's in my sketchbook right now) and the one after that - well most of that is still in my head!!