I come from a family of business people, but I had the idea I wanted to become an artist.
Right at the beginning, I didn't know if Miffy was a boy or girl.
But I don't sit down and think: this is meant for children.
I thought it would be very nice to become Picasso or Rembrandt, or a van Gogh.
Each book first begins with a little idea.
My father realised that for me to become a publisher in his firm would have been the end of the firm!
I did about 2000 covers altogether, for all sorts of books - from Shakespeare to James Bond - and I always had the idea that I must give 100%, no matter who the author was.
Then one day I thought it would be wonderful to make a whole book, to make my text and my drawings together, and that's how I started doing children's books.
But we discovered that, although I liked publishing, the commercial side meant nothing at all to me.
Now, I had been drawing all this time - especially in France of course - so, when I came back, my father gave me the chance to do a cover for one of the books he published.
Before he went to sleep, I told him a little story about a rabbit we saw run around the beach house we rented.
When I make a book, I make it for the child and not for the parent - no jokes in it for the parents!
I thought it was amazing to work with authors, to get a manuscript and try to make up a cover for it.
I want a nice picture book with 12 pictures - I do my best with that format.
I have been drawing all my life.
Miffy has changed quite a lot since the early books, although I never realised it at the time.