Lizzie Finlay Draws Compton Valance at the MCBF Family Fun Day

Compton Valance illustrator, Lizzie Finlay, showed lots of excited children how to draw the book’s characters at a Manchester Children’s Book Festival Family Fun Day workshop today. 

Lizzie, dressed as top-secret agent, Samuel Nathaniel Daniels, from the Compton Valance series, showed the children how to draw the the disgusting mouldy sandwiches that help Compton to travel through time. Then she asked the children to suggest how she could make the sandwiches look even stinkier! She also showed how to draw buzzing flies, and Compton himself – giving the children special ink-flicking pens made from bamboo which were very messy!

Lizzie then read extracts from the Compton Valance books and asked the children to draw their own versions of all the well-loved Compton characters. Lizzie, who called it ‘a joy’ to draw the Matt Brown’s characters, thought that the pictures the children produced were amazing. She said,

“Illustration is a job that you often do on your own so it’s really nice to see so many children here drawing Compton. They should be very proud of themselves.”
Lizzie also gave each child a present of a Samuel Nathaniel Daniels moustache and hat and demonstrated how to draw the agent from the future.
Knitted Compton Valance enjoying the ink dip pens
All of the children really enjoyed the drawing and the response from parents at the event was positive. Claire Teague who was attending the workshop with her son, Oscar, said,
“We’ve always wanted to come to the Manchester Children’s Book Festival and are so pleased to be at the Family Fun Day. Oscar absolutely loves the Compton Valance books and it’s fantastic for him to meet Lizzie who is one of his heroes.”
Asked if he had enjoyed the workshop, Oscar answered with a resounding, “Yeah!”
To hear more about Compton’s time-travelling adventures, visit
For a full programme of Manchester Children’s Book Festival events, click here and to find out about the fantastic Compton Valance Time-travel comic strip competition, click here.

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