About Me

Shelagh McNicholas

I studied Illustration at Kingston Polytechnic and I now live in Liverpool with my daughter Molly…my constant inspiration, and our cat ‘Jelli’. I specialise in Children’s Book illustration including picture book, educational and special needs work. I am passionate about drawing and painting, always having a sketch book in my pocket to capture the moment. These include sketching behind the scenes at Wimbledon Theatre, ballet classes and farm yards.

I am happiest when surrounded by children in their own little worlds, sketching them just being themselves, never spending more than seconds on catching the pose or scenario. Returning to the peace and quiet of my studio to draw and paint where I develop the characters to fit a specific brief. Most of my picture book artwork is created using a 3b soft pencil and watercolours.

I am currently illustrating picture books for the USA and Australia working with publishers such as Scholastic USA, Random House, Tiger Tales and Hinkler and I am working on a few stories of my own!

Commissions include;

A&C Black, Andersen Press, Barrington Stoke, Byron Press Cambridge University Press, Dial Books USA, Hachette Children’s Books, Harcourt Educational Publishers, Gecko Ltd, Hodder Children’s Books, Kingfisher Books, Macmillan Books, Meadowside Children’s Books, Orchard Books, Oxford University Press, Parragon Press, Pearson Educational, Topics Partnership, Usborne Publishing, Walker Books and Watts Publishing.


‘Jessy and the Long Short Dress’ (A&C Black Ltd) Highly Commended Award TES & NASEN Educational Publishers

Shelagh McNicolasMobile: 07798 912 903
Home:   0151 932 1603

What people have said about me…

I am an avid collector of art from children’s books, and I was first introduced to Shelagh’s paintings through a website that promoted this genre of artwork. As there were over a thousand artists featured, it took me several days to go through all the possibilities, but after scrutinizing every piece, it was obvious that, as far as I was concerned, the clear winner was Shelagh McNicholas. I adored her whimsy, her delicacy, and the joyful emotion with which she managed to imbue every single one of her paintings. I ended up contacting her about doing a commission piece, and came to discover that, wonderful as the artist is, the actual woman is even more delightful. Shelagh, both on paper and in real life, is an absolute joy to know.

Mary Sheldon