A York-based artist is set to launch an exciting fairytale that has taken more than 40 years to complete.

Irma Gemmell will unveil The Dragon Tree, a beautifully illustrated story aimed at children aged five and above, at a series of events, including at Derwenthorpe Super Sustainability Centre, from 2pm to 5pm, on Saturday (October 29).

The Dragon Tree tells the story of Grunden as he encounters elves, journeys through caves and ravines, grapples with invisibility and poison before finally ariving at a volcano.

Irma, of Osbaldwick, said the fairytale had been born out of her son Dan's vivid imagination when he was three. Dan is now one of the top visual effects artists in Hollywood, and was this year nominated for a Bafta for The Matrix Reloaded.

Irma said: "For a story that has taken so long to complete it's perhaps appropriately about persistence, survival and the achievement of dreams. Quite often when you get to where you think you were going it's not as you imagined. The Dragon Tree has taken so long to complete because I have been uprooted so many times before I came to York. It has taken me all my life to settle in a place to get it done.

"The three main characters are basically very good. Having good examples is important as today we almost glorify people who behave badly."

Irma, who was born in Papua New Guinea, before moving to Australia, California and Scotland, has lived in York for 25 years, where she has a print-making studio.

She has worked for several decades in print-making and illustrations, as well as producing set designs for York Opera Company and writing poetry.