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Swansea illustrator creates book based on Welsh alphabet

A Swansea illustrator has been inspired by his Learn Welsh lessons to create a unique Welsh alphabet book.

Mark Hughes who was born and raised in Swansea, is learning Welsh with Learn Welsh Swansea Bay Region at the Tŷ Tawe Welsh centre, Swansea.  Mark decided to illustrate a Welsh letter every day for the month of October 2018, as part of the annual Inktober challenge for professional illustrators. 

On completing the challenge, Mark was encouraged to publish his finished work as a book, called ‘Yr Wyddor’ (the Welsh for ‘Alphabet’), which is available to buy online and from the Tŷ Tawe shop and ‘Cover to Cover’ bookshop in Mumbles.

Mark Hughes explains:

“Creating a book about the Welsh alphabet is something I have tried to complete in the past, but have never managed to finish.  I was showing the illustrations at the time to my Welsh tutor, Robin Campbell.  Robin is an incredibly supportive tutor and encouraged me to complete the alphabet this time.  After the illustrations started to pile up somebody said ‘this could be a pretty cool book’ and that’s how it happened.”

Tutor with Learn Welsh Swansea Bay Region, Robin Campbell adds:

“Mark is a very likeable guy with a great sense of humour who is keen on inspiring others to learn Welsh.  He is a very talented artist and each of his images tells its own story.”

Mark enjoys attending ‘Sadwrn Siarad’ Saturday workshops at Tŷ Tawe, as well as monthly folk music sessions called ‘Sesiwn Werin’.  These events enable Mark to practise speaking Welsh in an informal setting and meet other Welsh learners and speakers in Swansea.

“It’s funny that the longer you learn the language, the more you find out that people you know, and people around you, are Welsh speakers, but you never knew before,” adds Mark.  ‘‘It’s great to hear people out and about, speaking to each other in Welsh.”

To find a Learn Welsh course or for opportunities to practise your Welsh in the Swansea Bay Region go to learnwelsh.cymru