It appears you're viewing content from a territory other than your own — switch territory?

Behind the Book: Lucy Loves Bugs

last updated 03 July 2024

We joined author/illustrator Kim Drane to talk about the creative journey of the joyous new book Lucy Loves Bugs, published by Museums Victoria Publishing.

In your own words, what is Lucy Loves Bugs about?

Lucy Loves Bugs is a book close to my heart, about a young girl joyfully sharing her passion for bugs to absolutely anyone who will listen. It’s a story about encouraging your natural curiosity and unashamedly pursuing what brings you joy.


Tell me about your illustrative process, what inspired you?

My process is pretty simple, I always begin with a period of doodling. Scribbling down anything that is galloping around my brain on the subject- no matter how silly or plain and wonky. With so many thoughts dancing around my head it’s always a good start to get them all down on paper to clear my head. When it comes to inspiration I could prattle on all day about the different artists and fascinations I’ve had. But, I think I can boil it all down to a love of mid-century illustration and a whole lot of cartoons from my childhood. There is just something that captivates me about the unique use of shapes, colour and the charming imperfections that come with printing and cel animation.


What was your favourite part of working on Lucy Loves Bugs?

The bugs! I spent so many hours researching, sketching and reading about as many different kinds of bugs as I could. If anything, writing this book only made me even more excited about the world of insects than when I began writing it. I also visited the museum so many times to sketch and admire their Bugs Alive exhibit, which is definitely a happy place of mine. Did you know they have real orb spiders in an open exhibit? I would also say the best part of this experience would be the feeling of igniting that childlike joy again. Writing and illustrating a book was my childhood dream. Let alone a book about bugs! I really felt like I was creating this book together with my younger self. The thought of that just makes me so happy and honestly filled me with so much joy while creating this alongside the museum.


Why is the book important to you?

This book is lovingly based on my own childhood, and Lucy is essentially me obsessing over bugs or a new area of special interest. What I loved about childhood was experiencing that obsessive thirst for knowledge on whatever the new subject may be. For me it was usually on bugs, animals, mythical creatures, ancient worlds and dinosaurs- and on and on it went. I became an annoying younger sibling who just would not stop blurting out facts and asking the question “but, why?” This book is about celebrating that hunt for knowledge and joy of discovery, and encouraging young girls’ interest in STEM. This is the book I was waiting to read as a kid.


Is there anything specific you hope readers take away from reading Lucy Loves Bugs?

Other than promoting science and learning a bit more about our cute insect friends and neighbours. I’d say my hope is that it encourages younger readers to follow their curiosity and be proud of the passion they have for something; whether it be bugs, dinosaurs, mythical creatures or knitting. You never know where it may lead you, but you’ll definitely have fun doing it along the way.

Get your copy of Lucy Loves Bugs here.

To work with Kim, get in contact with her agent Nicky Lander here.

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website — see our privacy policy for more.