Our team


Maternal Journal is an interdisciplinary Arts in Health project, produced by artist and midwife Laura Godfrey-Isaacs and Founding Mother and communications specialist Samantha McGowan, in collaboration with Debra Bick, Professor of Maternal Health at Warwick University and psychiatrist Carmine Pariante, Professor of Psychological Medicine at King’s College London.

The project is advised by our Founding Mothers group who took part in the very first Maternal Journal group.

The pilot project was supported by the Arts in Mind Innovation Scheme from King’s College London’s Culture team.

Laura godfrey isaacs
Artist, midwife & birth activist

Laura Godfrey-Isaacs | Artist, midwife & birth activist | Image by Nigel Dickinson | Maternal Journal

Laura Godfrey-Isaacs spent over twenty years in the arts, as a visual artist, academic and creative producer. In 2016, she graduated as a midwife from King’s College London, and now works as a community midwife.

She aspires to bring her knowledge and experience in the arts together with midwifery, as a way of introducing fresh interdisciplinary perspectives to inform education, practice, policy and research.

Read Laura’s blog
Twitter: @godfrey_isaacs


Samantha McGowan
Communications and content Producer


A communications and content producer who specialises in creative projects and strategy for nonprofits and small businesses. She has more than ten years’ experience developing effective strategies both in the UK and internationally, for work including major brand campaigns, festivals and events and global advocacy projects.

Twitter: @missmcgowan


Debra Bick
Midwife & Professor of Maternal Health, Warwick University

Debra Bick | Midwife & Professor of Maternal Health, Warwick University | Maternal Journal

Debra Bick’s areas of interests are maternal physical and psychological morbidity post-birth. Her research has been used to inform the evidence base for maternity care as well as numerous online learning resources for midwives and obstetricians, both in the UK and internationally.

Twitter: @DebraBick


Carmine Pariante
Consultant Psychiatrist & Professor of Psychological Medicine, King’s College london


Dr Carmine Pariante is head of the perinatal psychiatry section and the stress, psychiatry and immunology section and laboratory at King’s.

He is particularly interested in the pathogenesis of major depression and the mechanism of action relating to antidepressant drugs. More recently, he has been extending this research stream into studying depression in pregnancy and postpartum.

In 2012, he was named Academic Psychiatrist of the Year by the Royal College of Psychiatrists.

Twitter: @ParianteSPILab
Facebook: SPILabKCL


Founding Mothers

Maternal Journal steering group

Mo Ade, Amy Dignam, Chantelle Jackson, Pia Jaimr, Hannah Lamdin and Samantha McGowan

Mothers from the first Maternal Journal group continue to meet regularly and help to guide and shape the future design of the project.

Our creative team

Merlin Strangeway


Merlin is an award-winning freelance medical illustrator, educator and live graphic recording artist. She strives to visualise information in a way that makes it universally accessible, educational and engaging for both clinicians, patients and the general public.


Victoria Ford


A London-based, multi-disciplinary designer/art director who creates publications and graphics for television, events and campaigns. She has designed for BBC, Conde Nast, Hearst, Virgin, WaterAid, Barclays, Royal Mail and many other brands.


Sarah Pyke
Social media producer


Sarah is a freelance copywriter and editor with over ten years’ experience creating content for arts organisations and not-for-profits, including WaterAid, Amnesty International, LSE Students' Union and Arts Students' Union. She spends quite a lot of time on Twitter, sometimes when she should be doing other things. Here she is in about 1984.

Twitter: @pykelets

For information about the project, please contact laura@maternaljournal.org.