This week we truly enjoyed interviewing Gemma Yu aka @littletalesforlittlepeople as our Artist spotlight of the week.
Hello! Please can you give us a brief little introduction about yourself?
Hi! I am Gemma Yu, but most people call me Gem. I am an aspiring illustrator/children’s book author. I live in Manchester with my husband (Jason) and two beautiful children, Olivia (2) and Joey (1), life is very busy and full of fun. I am a trained Early Years teacher and was living and working in China until January 2020. We came to the UK to have my son, but the pandemic hit and we were unable to return to China. During my maternity leave, after spending so much time with the children, I began making up little stories about the adventures we had together. That is how @littletalesforlittlepeople began.
What inspires you?
My kids are definitely my main inspiration, there is never a dull moment with them. I find a lot of inspiration when reading to them and love admiring the various illustrations and styles of writing. I am always in search of a new beautifully illustrated book to share with them.
What is your favourite thing to draw?
I love drawing anything silly, let’s face it, we all need to take life less seriously sometimes, so I find it really enjoyable to draw things with a funny twist. That is why the Friday Doodle Club is a firm favourite of mine and I have really enjoyed creating something with the weekly prompts.
What art goals do you have for this year?
I have so much that I want to do and achieve this year! Firstly, I am in the process of launching my Etsy shop ‘LittleTalesByGem’ which has been a big project but something which I have found very exciting and enjoyable. I am also in the process of illustrating one of my stories ‘The Ticklish Tooth Monsters’, which I am hoping to have finished before the year is out. Recently, a course by the amazing Julia Donaldson was given to me as a gift to help with writing children’s picture books, which is very exciting.
What techniques/supplies do you use?
I do all my illustrations digitally with my iPad and Apple pen. I draw using the Procreate app. I would love to experiment with other mediums in the future too though and perhaps combine the two, the possibilities are endless!
What advice would you give to another doodler/artist?
Just go for it! Take that leap of faith and just draw, draw, draw. My illustrations have come a long way since I began drawing back in December 2020 and that is simply from practicing and drawing every day. I feel as though I am finally finding my style but I know I have so much to learn and I cannot wait to try new things and see where they take me. Don’t worry if a piece is good or not just enjoy the process and try something different the next time. We all learn from doing, so like I said before, just go for it and most of all have fun!
Where can people go to learn more about you or see more of your work?
You can find my work and any updates on Instagram at
I sell some cards on Thortful at
More recently my Etsy page will be launching very soon at