Illustrator Spotlight: Anh Cao

I am thrilled to welcome the illustrator of Danny Chung Does Not Do Maths (Piccadilly Press, June 2021) to my blog. 


Anh is an illustrator and visual development artist based in London. She is originally from Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam and studied at Bournemouth University. Anh loves to experiment with different colours and textures in her work. She is inspired by different cultures, landscapes and fairy tale stories from places she has visited. She brings these inspirations into her paintings to create whimsical, vibrant, fantastical worlds. She has worked on projects for Cbeebies, Netflix and publishers. See more of her work at 


 1) Did you always know you wanted to be an illustrator/animator? 

I have always loved drawing since I was a kid, but I never thought I could become an illustrator. My parents wanted me to study finance and have a stable job, so I put drawing aside to focus on academic subjects... Until I saw Kiki’s Delivery Service in High School! The film really reminded me of how much I love drawing and how wonderful it is to do what you love. That's when I knew I wanted to be an illustrator. 



2) Who is your favourite illustrator and why? 

My favourite illustrator is Geneviève Godbout. She has a gift at creating the most charming characters, with so much personality in them. I love the way she uses colour pencils to create a soft and vintage look.



3) What part of Danny Chung Does Not Do Maths did you enjoy drawing the most? 

I love Ant Gran! She is my absolute favourite character to do, and getting to draw her being 'evil' in Danny’s imagination makes me laugh every time.



4) If you had to create a mutant creature like Danny does in the novel, what two creatures would you put together and what would you call it? 

I would love a giraffe with a lion head. I think it would look like a walking sunflower!



5) Do you have any tips for children who want to become illustrators in the future? 

Drawing is like a secret language. Everyone has their own unique way of doing it. And like any other language, you can use it to tell stories, express your feelings, or even say things you can’t say in words. It’s a superpower that can do so much even on a small piece of paper. So draw, draw, draw! The more you do, the better you will be at it. I promise!



6) What materials do you use in your work? 

I work mostly on digital software, so with Photoshop or on my iPad using ProCreate. But I love painting with acrylic and gouache in my free time. It’s very relaxing to feel the paint going on the page and being smudged around.



Thanks so much for answering my questions Anh!