425: A visit to the real House of Golden Dreams – studio of Jackie Morris, Carnegie and Greenaway nominated author illustrator

Jackie Morris

ITEM: A visit to the real House of Golden Dreams – studio of Jackie Morris, Carnegie and Greenaway nominated author illustrator.

Jackie Morris

DETAIL: People often ask me where the House of Golden Dreams is, and can they come and visit. The truth is only exists as an online gallery. There is no real physical place. But there is my studio.So many artists these days have a policy of ‘open studio’ that people expect to be able to visit a studio. Maybe because mine is in my home I have never done this. Maybe it’s because when I am at home I behave a little like a hermit, happy to hide away and catch ideas and paint and play and dream.

This time last week I couldn’t work. My daughter had flown to Hanoi a few on the Thursday. I painted, listening to the news, terrible weather in the Philippines and the storm moving towards Vietnam. I tried not to worry, but couldn’t settle to anything. The storm passed over Hannah. She was safe, happy, exploring a beautiful land. Meanwhile other mothers, other daughters were not so lucky.

I can’t imagine what it is like to lose everything, to struggle to find fresh water for your child, to be a child alone in the world. I tried to think what I could do to help, here in my small part of the world, something that would give money to these people whose lives had shattered and a small thank you for the blessing of my own child, safe.

So I would like to offer the chance to visit my studio, my home. To whoever wins this piece of the auction I would welcome you in for a small tour of the space in which I work, tea or coffee, a chat, a chance to riffle through sketchbooks, maybe read a little from stories I am working on. You would also get to meet Elmo the ginger cat and the naughty Lady S of leopard like beauty ( and Max, if you were really lucky). There are many pieces of original art hanging around, not all by me, and curious objects and strange things. If the weather is good we could take a walk, with Rosie who features in The Cat and the Fiddle, to visit Maes y Mynydd where the Seal Children is set and if you wished i could read the book amongst the ruined walls of the old village. If it’s raining maybe we could go to Solva Woollen Mill for tea and cake. A morning or an afternoon, your choice, and you could bring a friend.

( My studio is upstairs. If you are allergic to cats best not bid. It’s also not suitable for Under 12s. I live near St Davids in Pembrokeshire. You can buy this as a present for someone if you wish and i will send them a hand drawn card inviting them to come and visit.)

Jackie Morris

BIO: Jackie Morris is the author and illustrator of many books that masquerade as children’s books, because they contain pictures. She lives in a small house by the sea that is held together with the webs of spiders because she is more interested in painting and writing than in housework, though she does like to make bread. She shares the house with numerous dogs and cats and children that come and go ( usually her own).

About Candy Gourlay

Growing up in the Philippines, Candy Gourlay wondered why all the books she'd ever loved didn't resemble her steamy, tropical home in Manila. As a result, it took her years to fulfil her dream of becoming an author – and years to learn that Filipino stories, too, belong in the pages of books. Her latest novel is BONE TALK, set in 1899 and told from the point of view of a boy from a headhunting village during the US invasion of the Philippines. She has just published her first picture book, IS IT A MERMAID – about a dugong who thinks she's a mermaid. Candy's other novels, TALL STORY and SHINE, have been listed for many prizes in the United Kingdom such as the Carnegie Medal and the Guardian Children's Book Prize. Both novels won the Crystal Kite Prize for Europe and Tall Story was awarded the National Children's Book Award in the Philippines.


  1. £30. Worth infinitely more…

  2. I’ll make bread and soup if it’s more.

  3. Alison J Glenday


  4. £40 – it’s worth that by the minute…

  5. Liz

    For pesto bread alone its worth it! £80

  6. Gilli Fryzer

    I would love to see the ruined village and tread the landscape my family once knew so well. Would have to visit in the Spring though? £100

  7. That’s ok Gilli. Will need to be sorted around whoever is visiting. And for those who love Robin Hobb I have some of the cover art for her books here and also black and whites for tThe Wilful Princess. Lots to see.

  8. Fiona Dick

    Would love to meet Jackie in person – and Lady S, so £120

  9. Your work is fabulous. Time spent with you would be amazing. I know I’ve done it.
    Looking in your studio would be out of this world.

    Keep up the good work and people keep bidding!!!!


  10. Cheryl and Adam Lloyd

    £200 worth every penny and more

  11. Nicola Cowling

    £250 What a remarkable opportunity this would be. I see so many children and teachers who are inspired and enthralled by your work. Thank you.

  12. It’s a little scary for me as I don’t often allow people in to my studio. I promise to tidy up a bit, but not too much. And to make sure i have manuscripts on hand to read. And whoever comes can bring a friend.

  13. So, one of the things I could do while you are here is paint a very small painting that, once dry, you could take away with you. Either a dragon or a hare, maybe an owl. While you watch, and talk to me. That way you get memories and a catalyst for memory, or rather, a small painting too. To see the kind of thing I mean have a look at this blog post which has the paintings I did in schools whilst on my travels. It would be that sort of thing. http://www.jackiemorris.co.uk/blog/1-365-miles/

  14. Pingback: Authors for The Phillipines | V. Kathryn Evans

  15. Pingback: Auction for Philippines no 2: what to expect. | Jackie Morris Artist

  16. Dorothy Hallam


  17. Dorothy Hallam


  18. Dorothy Hallam


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