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Donovan Bixley has been drawing ever since he first learned to hold a pencil. Then he discovered Asterix and Footrot Flats, and started creating cartoon strips. In the last ten years he's illustrated more than fifty books, and he's now written and illustrated his own whimsical take on the life of Austrian composer Mozart. Faithfully Mozart; The Fantastical World of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart took Donovan six years to research and finish, and it was a finalist in last year's Montana Book Awards.

Donovan's odyssey began one day in the music section of his local Taupo library where he found a book of Mozart's letters. He was hooked. Faithfully Mozart contains dozens of Donovan's intricate, gentle caricatures of the prodigy Mozart himself, the culture vultures who surrounded him, and the rich fabric of the baroque period in which he lived.

So what's a nice kiwi boy like this, doing, writing a book like that? David Steemson spends an afternoon with Donovan Bixley in his studio at his Taupo home, and talks to his wife Jo about what makes Donovan tick.