Inspired by the #kidlitwomen articles and actions during Women’s History Month, I’ve been doodling my Tiger into images from picture books illustrated by a few of my favorites. You can follow these posts on Instagram, where I also post ‘image packets’ daily from other female illustrators I admire in children’s literature.
Author: Photography: Jake Green; Art Direction: Melanie Mues; Editor: James Cartwright Publisher: The Bookmaker’s Studio, 2015; Printers: Hacksmith Press Ages: all Themes: children’s picture book illustrators, illustration, design Opening/Introduction:Making books for kids is a humbling profession; months and years of character developing, story refining, composition adjusting, and dummy approving to which your audience will be forever indifferent.
Summary: (from the kickstarter page) A glimpse inside the studios and minds of some of the world’s best living children’s picturebook makers. A limited edition photo book.
I supported this kickstarter project because: I am curious, nosy, interested and delighted to have a glimpse into the working spaces of other artists.
Resources/activities: Have children list all the things they recognize in the artist’s studios as tools they know or own themselves, then make a second list of things they are surprised to see in an artist’s studio; Discuss how picture books are made.
For existing PPBF selections, including resources and activities, go to Susanna Hill’s blog: HERE; for todays’ fresh picks, click HERE
Tomorrow, April 4th, is the birthday of Belgian illustrator and recipient of the 2010 Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award, Kitty Crowther. And though she may not be well known in the US, it is where I first saw her work, albeit in the World Languages section of my library (see my review of ¿Entonces?/Then? – HERE). Today’s Perfect Picture Book Friday pick is the only ‘Crowther’ I was able to find on the fly (why, why didn’t I order ahead?), while traveling through Germany last month. Read more about Crowther and her work at picturebookmakers.com HERE
Author/Illustrator: Kitty Crowther, translated from the French by Bernadette Ott Publisher: Aladin Verlag, 2014 (originally published in French by l’ecole des loisirs, 2003) Ages: 5 and up Themes: forest creatures, fairies, friendship Opening: my translation: This story takes place in a deep, deep forest. (Diese Geschichte spielt in einem tiefen, tiefen Wald.) Summary: (from the publisher) my translation attempt: A fox lures Leslie in the dense undergrowth of the deep woods, not found on any map. In a clearing she meets a secretive creature that will change her life in wonderful ways. (Original: Ein Fuchs lockt Leslie ins dichte Unterholz eines tiefen Waldes, der in keiner Karte verzeichnet ist. Auf einer Lichtung begegnet sie dort einem geheimnisvollen Wesen, das ihr Leben auf wunderbare Weise verändern wird.)
I bought this book because: it may have been the only Crowther book I could find, but the illustrations are charming and I would have picked it anyway! They possess so much energy while maintaining a a level of secrecy, of mystery, always leaving me wanting more. It’s a folk tale, unlike conventional American counterparts in word count and style, but universal in the telling of how a wild creature might not adapt to a home life.
Resources/activities: as this book may not be available in English I won’t add activities for it, but would like to invite caregivers and children to explore the world languages departments of their local bookstores and libraries.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY, KITTY!
For more PPBF selections including resources and activities, go to Susanna Hill’s blog: HERE
Summary: (From my library catalog) A blue teddy bear, a pink rabbit, and other toys gather in the playroom to await the arrival of the child. (in Spanish) Un oso de peluche azul, un conejo rosa, y otros juguetes se reúnen en la sala de juegos para esperar la llegada del niño. I like this book because: I was looking for books illustrated by Kitty Crowler and found this one, but only in Spanish. The story is one of few words, and only 12 spreads, plus endpapers, and in a very small format, approx. 6×7.25″. Ionly wish it were a little softer so I could hug it a little longer. I did not need to translate the book to understand it – even if I did I would be left with the same amount of suspense as each figure enters the room asking, “Then?” It is delightful, just the thought of a small child’s stuffed animals waiting for him so they can all climb into bed together! Crowther’s illustrations are darling but not too sweet – perfect! – which led me to do a little more research, and I found that she was the recipient of the Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award in 2010 – read more HERE; or listen to the video interview below:
Resources/activities: Feeling creative? Make a special bedtime buddy from a child’s own drawing, or have one custom made HERE, or give it a go with simple step-by-step instructions HERE; talk about getting ready for bed and personal rituals. Read another Crowther bedtime book in French: Scritch Scratch dip clapote! – or wiggle your way through like I did, having fun deciphering the words and enjoying the pictures!
For more Perfect Picture Book picks with teacher/parent resources, check out the list on Susanna Hill’s blog HERE.
Welcome to Design of the Picture Book! I'm Carter Higgins, and I'm a writer and librarian for kids. I spent a spectacular stint as the Children's Book Editor at <a href="http://www.designmom.com/">Design Mom</a> which I loved! You can find my column <a href="http://www.designmom.com/category/childrens-lit/">here</a>.<br /> I'm a K-6 librarian, a former-ish graphic designer, an SCBWI member, and a huge fan of words and pictures.<br /> Represented by <a href="http://www.rpcontent.com/">Rubin Pfeffer of Rubin Pfeffer Content, LLC</a>.