A LUCKY break has landed an enthusiastic animator an exciting new career.

Vesta Charlesworth, aged 22, registered with an online freelance website to beat the credit crunch – and won a commission to illustrate books.

“I’m ecstatic,” said Vesta, of Norley Road, Cuddington, an optical advisor at Vision Express in Northwich.

“Someone googled my name and my profile came up,”

“This random private person has asked me to illustrate four children’s books.

“They will be aimed at five to eight-year-olds and include prose and poetry. It’s amazing.”

Vesta, who has a degree in animation, had hoped to develop her career in the capital but the recession hit.

“I moved closer to London but lots of companies were closing down so I had to come back.”

She enrolled with peopleperhour.com which matches freelance skills with project work through a novel bidding system.

Translators, lawyers, photographers and tax experts are among professionals looking for work.

Numbers of self-employed people working at home through this ‘eBay for business’ website have soared by more than 500 per cent in the past 12 months.

“I would advise people to start from the bottom,” said Vesta.

“My first job was £25 and the website took £15 but it gave me something towards my portfolio.”

Cartoons are Vesta’s biggest passion and Spiderman is one of her childhood favourites.

“My friends buy DVDs of cartoons for my birthday,” she said.

“I say it’s for research but I want to be a kid forever.

“At university, you had the freedom of doing what you wanted,” she said.

“Knowing once you finish a three minute piece, you did it all by yourself is really satisfying.

“My dream is to create and help make my own cartoon series.