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Joint Interview – Juliette Oliver and Anita Bagdi…

September 4, 2013

Nimble – definition: 1. quick and light in movement; moving with ease; agile 2. quick to understand, think, devise

Today’s word is perfect for Juliette Oliver and Anita Bagdi as their book is yoga inspired! Firstly, here is Juliette’s interview.


What do you enjoy most about writing?

The freedom to express my creativity through rhyme; whether it be profundity or nonsense, I find my thoughts find some fluidity in rhyme.

What age did you start writing stories/poems?

I enjoyed writing as a teenager and I would definitely say my strongest subject was Literacy. However, I didn’t really begin to write poetry until I was about 26. I remember being very inspired whilst out walking with my children, to write about the seasons. Shortly after, I became a teacher which presented me with many opportunities to write poetry as examples for lessons and also longer pieces as assembly scripts.

Has your genre changed or stayed the same?

I feel I write in two styles: predominantly playful and humorous poetry; also, more profound pieces, which are a little more enigmatic.

What genre are you currently reading?


Do you read for pleasure or research or both?

Both. I find time restricts the amount I read for pleasure and I am incessantly inquisitive so I read lots of science!

Who is your best supporter/mentor/encourager?

Anita Bagdi – My illustrator and partner in Little Yogi Adventures – we inspire each other and the same level of intense enthusiasm just wouldn’t be there without our synergy.

Of the characters you have created or envisioned, which is your favorite & why?

We haven’t so much created characters – we have created stories with the same characters (The Little Yogis) but different themes. Our next theme is The Deep Blue Sea, our current book is The Jungle Story. We wanted to keep the characters generic as The Little Yogis actually represents all the Little people I teach each week – so it could be any of them!

Where is your favorite writing space?

The beach or my sofa with a good cup of coffee!

Do you plan your stories, or are you a seat of the pants writer?

Our stories require planning of yoga sequences and planning of a message we would like to convey. Once we have that, then I can compose a poem/rhyme to match the yoga sequence (each posture has a name – the rhyme is written around them). All sounds straight forward but actually they continuously overlap as I swap/change and tweak both wording and physical movement.

What inspires your ideas/stories?

Watching my Little Yogis do and LOVE yoga. They also create little stories and rhymes to do yoga to, and they are very good at it! I watch what they enjoy and listen to what makes them laugh/feel calm/ feel energized and happy, and then I try to use yoga stories to enhance all of these qualities,

Do you belong to a writing group? If so which one?

Not as yet!

Do you have a book published? If so, what is it called & where can readers purchase it?


Little Yogi Adventures – The Jungle Story.

It can be purchased through our website:



Lulu – The online market place.

 If you could meet one favorite author, who would it be and why?

Well, in an ideal world …..Dr Suess! He is my inspiration as he manages to convey important and profound life messages through humour and rhyme. The ultimate poem being ‘Oh The Places You’ll Go’. My second choice would be Alan Ahlberg as he is also incredibly deft with world play and making the most mundane scenarios humorous.

Where can readers find you and your blog?

 Do you have plans or ideas for your next book?

Yes, the next one is written and the yoga has been composed. We just need to get painting! Keep a look out for The Deep Blue.

And here is Anita’s interview:


What do you enjoy most about illustrating?

I  enjoy to let my pencil to spread the ideas onto paper. Sometimes it comes out totally differently as I imagined in my head, as if that pencil had control over my hand! Sometimes it appears much better than I imagined! Sometimes I have it exactly how I pictured. Honestly, that drawing pencil can be a magical tool when it links to a mind!

After drafting ideas, I have a go with colours –  mainly water colour. That again,gives a different feel to the picture. Maybe some ink or pen to outline bits at the end. Just follow feelings, no learnt structure or routine. My husband catches  me smiling while I `m drawing and painting pictures. It’s my kind of meditation.

What age did you start drawing and painting?

I always dreamed to be an children’s book illustrator, since I was 6 years old. But I have never `learnt any school stuff` about drawing/painting and that actually gave me complete freedom to find my own style. I just love drawing since I can hold a pencil.

Little girl

Has your style changed or stayed the same?

As your mind and experiences are changing in your life so are your characters changing. You explore more media, techniques, create new characters, feelings, you learn all the time. Yet, topics can  and will change with time, your style somehow will always stays recognizable.


Do you have any favorite illustrators who can inspire you?

Oliver Jeffers,Emily Gravett, Lynne Chapmann, Corey Godbey, some Hungarian illustrators like Mari Takacs, Katalin Szegedi  just to mention a few great ones and I also follow inspiring blogs.

Who is your best supporter/mentor/encourager?

My husband – he`s always there for me, if it`s about creating some free time for some art work next to my teaching job or helping to find inspiration or just simply making a good coffee for me…he is a big kid with lots of unusual, fun ideas and real imagination. He is really my `other half`.

Also, my friends, their children, the coffee times with them, and the children in my class at school.

No mentor, I learn as I go.

Of the characters you have created or envisioned, which is your favorite & why?

I like `working` with the Cloud Girls. They already have their stories, all waiting for me to create the pictures to them. I love the colours and the gentle flow of lines on these pictures. Somehow they make you feel, that you also want to be there with that very same cloud.

Cloud (1)

Where is your favorite space to do your art work?

At home, at my desk, preferably during daylight with some music. It’s very important for me to tidy everything up first, so I have a clean, organized starting point and I can be ready to create  and rule my very own mess! 🙂

Do you belong to a illustrator/art group? If so which one?

Not really, however I follow some inspiring groups like Illustration Friday, Creative Tuesday and try to participate as much as possible. It`s great to share your art with others and also to give and get some feedback on your work.


Do you have a book published? If so, what is it called & where can readers purchase it?

Our first book just came out this summer. It’s an interactive rhyming yoga story for children, Little Yogi Adventures – The Jungle Story. You can order it from our website or straight from

You also can find some useful guidelines of how to use the book on our Facebook page.


If you could meet one favourite author, who would it be and why?

Oliver Jeffers – love his stories, the life lessons in his stories,  his gentle humor in his art.  I’m a big fan of his.

Where can readers find you and your blog?

Do you have plans or ideas for your next book?

We are already working on the next Little Yogi Adventure: the Deep Blue Sea.

There is another children’s book almost ready and waiting to be published, called Bananas. It`s a charming story of two children who try to find out more about the different kind of  bananas.


And I have my own characters, the Cloud Girls, whose stories I really would like to paint – this will be a fun project later.

Cloud 2

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