ABOUT THE CREATORS
There is a little WILDLING in all of us.
That inner child that loved to run wild and free, without the judgement of the world bearing down on them. That authentic, passionate, mindful creator in all of us. We had that spark when we were young and want to bring that back through the work we do here. It’s about remembering that WILDLING with us and allowing space to create what fills us with passion. Allowing our inner WILDLING room to come alive again.
Wildling Books was formed when multi-award winner author/illustrator Craig Phillips and social media manager, author and speaker Bex Lipp joined forces. They wanted to create their own range of books with full creative freedom. With an amazing ability to bounce ideas off each other and really let their inner WILDLING get carried away, the crew have been able to produce the bestselling picture book, Aroha’s Way, with more amazing books in the pipelines from Aroha & her friends.
Craig Phillips received the NZ Children & Young Adults Book Award for Best Illustration in 2018 for his first book Giants, Trolls, Witches, Beasts: Ten Tales from the Deep, Dark Woods, published by Allen & Unwin. Craig then produced the first two graphic novels in the The Adventures of Jack Scratch series for Wildling Books. Comics are a huge love for Craig and something he has always wanted to create.
Bex Lipp was co-founder of award-winning business Awesome Inc, which started around creating gratitude journals, and was a great base to launch into publishing children’s books. Bex also co-wrote the book ‘Finding Gratitude’ through Quarto Publishing in the US. Bex’s own personal story of struggles with mental health issues led her to come up with the idea of making a picture book around the emotions associated with anxiety.
Aroha’s Way was created like magic... Bex and Craig let their creativity and knowledge really go WILD and it has proven to be a massive help to children, parents, teachers, caregivers and professionals working with children.
More about Craig Phillips
Craig Phillips has worked as a professional illustrator for the US and Australian publishing industries for twenty years. His client list includes Random House, Scholastic, Simon and Schuster, Hachette, Hardie Grant, Bloomsbury, Oxford University Press and many more. His work has appeared in art anthologies such as The Society of Illustrators Annual, Spectrum Fantastic Art Annual and Luerzers 200 Best Illustrators Worldwide, and has been exhibited at the Museum of American Illustration. Phillips also worked on Neil Gaiman’s American Gods in 2017. His first solo work, titled Giants, Trolls, Witches, Beasts: Ten Tales from the Deep, Dark Woods (Allen and Unwin, 2017) won the NZ Book Award’s Russell Clark Award for Illustration, a Gold Ledger in the Australian Ledger Awards, a Notable Book in the CBCA Awards and was also a finalist in the Aurealis Awards.
More about Bex Lipp
With a passion to bring awareness to the mental health of children from her own personal story, Bex has now been asked to speak at events around the topic of the creation of Aroha’s Way, anxiety and mental health. After going through two years of Cognitive Behaviour Therapy after ending up in crisis in her early twenties, Bex felt there was a real gap in what the professionals knew and what parents and teachers needed to know. Bex strongly feels that we can empower our children with skills to help prevent them from ending up in crisis like she did. Using the skills she has learnt throughout her journey with anxiety, depression, self-harm, body dismorphia and Borderline Personality Disorder she is creating books with messages to help children connect with their emotions and learn ways to regulate them.
With a gentle parenting approach, Bex feels that all children have genius within them and if we act out of a place of compassion, kindness and love, we will see our children thrive.