Gemma recently received an award from the Arts Council of Northern Ireland’s Lottery Funds under the General Art Award Scheme towards the costs of a project on the Causeway Coast, where she is originally from.
The aim was to create a large body of work based on the theme, building upon her existing strengths as a mixed media illustrator and to promote this beautiful part of the world. Gemma always intends for her work to be truly original, and in this case to also reflect this unique, iconic coastline. She created a body of illustrations inspired by first hand location studies. Some of the illustrations were created using materials which reflect the rugged landscape, such as Zecchi natural drawing stone.
These illustrations are now part of a new print and postcard range in Gemma's shop. The project was exhibited at the Puffin Gallery in Ballycastle over August 2018 and will be exhibited at the Braid Arts Centre in Ballymena over January and February 2019. The project has also since led to Gemma being an NI Young Artist of the Year 2018 finalist. The winner will be announced soon.
Gemma was recently commissioned to work on an invite for an event at Hillsborough Castle.
Gemma recently took part in the Inktober drawing challenge. Every October, artists all over the world take on the challenge, doing one ink drawing a day.
A poem by Gemma’s beloved Granda Danny
Oh Dear, Geoffrey is Gemma O'Neill's debut authored and illustrated picture book, published January 2013 with Templar Publishing. It is a tale about a rather tall and clumsy giraffe called Geoffrey. He annoys all the other animals with his long legs and neck, until one day he finds he can show his friends something they have never seen before; the stars.
Since publication, Oh Dear, Geoffrey has been selected as one of the titles in the Booktrust, Bookbuzz reading programme, been nominated for the CILIP Kate Greenaway Medal, shortlisted in the 'Never too Young' category for the Coventry Inspiration Book Awards and shortlisted for the Dundee Picture Book Award 2014.
Oh Dear Geoffrey is also one of the featured titles in the Candlewick Press "Read to Us!" Story- Hour Kit. The book was published in America with Candlewick Press, May 2014.
Meet Monty, King of the Jungle. Monty's favourite thing is his long, curly, magnificent mane. No one else has one quite like it, and there is nothing quite as important to Monty as his mane...Is there?
This is Gemma O'Neill's second authored and illustrated picture book, published 1st August 2014 with Templar Publishing.
Anorak Magazine- Write Up and Competition
Hive- Top 5 Children's Books Published August 2014
Kirkus- Star Review
The Busy Librarian- Review
Jill Bennett- Review
Literary Fusions- Review
My Friend Lucy- Review
Picture Books Blogger- Review
Picture Book Palooza- Review
Read It Daddy- Review
Toddler Storytime: Animal Heroes
Top Reads for KS1, Cumbria County Council, Library Services for Schools
World Book Day- New Books for 0-5 Pick
Copyright © 2014 by Gemma O'Neill