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Results 51 - 75 of 137,525
51. EASTER 2014 - tesco cards

Tesco have made a great effort for Easter this year with lots of variety in their card range and a large selection of decorations, gifts, and tableware. I bought this bunny design above which comes with a lovely decorated envelope. Here are some snap shots of other card designs spotted in store... Read the rest of this post

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52. ‘A Girl Named Elastika’ by Guillaume Blanchet

She’s young, dreamy and fearless, she drives cars way too fast, she’s also a yamakasi. She likes adventure, fireworks and unrelenting seas. From the day I conceived her, I’ve been a worried father. And a proud one too.

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53. Guest post by Gueh Yanting, Claudine


I am delighted to share a great guest post on the blog today.

Dear March House Books Readers,

Although I can’t remember it, I heard my first story from my parents. Not from story books, no. Real-life stories. Theirs.

They were the children who ran around in villages (we call them Kampong) in Singapore during the 50s and 60s, slippers slapping the dusty paths and clothes drenched when they hopped into ponds to catch fish. And that’s where the setting-inspiration for my children’s novel (in mid-60s) came from.

{How the Kampong looked like. Picture from Google Images Labeled for Reuse with Modifications. 
Source: http://comesingapore.com/travel-guide/article/607/ten-things-you-probably-didnt-know-about-singapore}

I asked my father, who especially loves telling snippets from his childhood, to contribute some for this post, and here’s what he told me:

·         As my father has 11 brothers and 3 sisters, they all crammed in one house, with one yard and owned one family plantation. My grandfather also reared chickens and pigs. At one point, there were more than 20 people (wives and baby cousins) living in that house!

·         My father and his brothers were too poor to afford school bags, so they used rattan baskets instead. When they had to sharpen their pencils, they used my grandfather’s shaving blade. They used to cut themselves quite often but never worried about it.

·         They showered using only one bar of soap: for the hair, face and body. That bar of soap was actually also used for laundry.

·         When he got off school at around 1pm, my father would return to the fields to help out. After completing his chores, he and my uncles would play at a nearby pond. Their main hobby was catching a certain species called ‘Fighting Fish’ and … letting them fight, I suppose.

·         Snacks were usually wrapped in newspapers. Sometimes they bought dried hawthorn flakes. If they didn’t have money for snacks, they’d get sweet potatoes from their fields, and roast them on a bed of charcoals.

{Dried Hawthorn Flakes/Cakes. Picture from Google Images Labeled for Reuse with Modifications.}

·         When the weather was hot, and in Singapore it mostly is, the children would buy balls of shaved ice to eat. The man who sold ice balls would drizzle colourful sugar syrup over them. By the way, we still have these at our marketplaces. During my childhood, it was also one of our favourite desserts. They are shaped like a small hill now, and have extra corn or red bean toppings, like this:


{Shaved Ice, a.k.a. Ice Kachang. Picture from Google Images Labeled for Reuse with Modifications.}

·         During lunar new years, parents would give children red packets (money stuffed in small, red envelopes) on New Year’s Eve, symbolizing good fortune for the coming year. When my father and some of his brothers received theirs, they spent all the money on firecrackers. Lighting up firecrackers was still legal then in Singapore. And they absolutely loved it! I suspect my father is waiting for Baby Olive (my one-year-old niece) to be slightly older so he could buy sparklers and play with her during New Year’s Eve.


{Red Packets. Picture from Google Images Labeled for Reuse with Modifications.}

·        My father studied in the village school till he was Primary 4, which was the highest level in that school. To go on to Primary 5, students had to travel farther out. My father and his brothers didn’t have the gift for studies, because even when they’d reached Primary 2 or 3 (around 8-9 years old), they were still not accustomed to gripping a pencil and writing with it. Usually, my grandfather or one of the elder brothers would have to steady their elbows in order for them to write neatly!

·         So he stopped studying after that and worked in my grandfather’s fields until he was about 16. Then he went into the construction industry.

A Gross, Mushroom Story (If you have a weak stomach, please skip this part!)

Those days, the nearest toilet could be quite far away and it was inconvenient to walk in the dark to get to one. People had chamber pots instead. However, with so many people under one roof, pots were too small. My family used pickled jars.

Sometimes they only poured the waste away after a few days. I’m not quite sure about this because I haven’t seen few-day-old urine, but I hear there would be sediments or dregs left in the jars.

Once, my grandfather stepped on a big, rusty nail. It was likely to give him a bad inflammation. Yet, he didn’t go to the hospital. They distrusted hospitals. My family had learned of a traditional folk cure, which was to soak a mushroom in the urine dregs overnight before applying it onto the wound. It sounds terribly gross, but it did work. The swelling went down the next day and my grandfather recovered fully soon after.


My father also told stories about adulthood, like how female guests attended wedding meals in the afternoon and all went home with a flower in their hair while male guests attended the evening round and each got a cigar, and how villagers called on midwives rather than hospital nurses when one of the women went into labour, and how one of my aunts ran off with a man she knew only briefly. My grandfather was livid, but they managed to get her back. That was the year the Queen of England visited Singapore.

Those were the days that were tough, but those were also the days my father and his brothers had the most fun. Those were the days I hadn’t experienced except through his stories. Those were the days (or close enough) that I’ve let my latest characters live in.



Gueh Yanting, Claudine, has written and published two picture ebooks (age 6 & up) and one middle-grade ebook (age 9 & up). Her latest story, LITTLE ORCHID’S SEA MONSTER TROUBLE, is about a girl trying to prove to her Ma that she hasn’t been spouting nonsense about the Giant Cuttlefish, and later turning into a sea monster herself. It is set in Singapore in 1965.

Check it out here:


Thank you so much for letting me spread my father’s story snippets here on your lovely blog, Barbara. I hope your readers enjoy them!


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54. designing seawigs

Big congratulations to Lucy Yewman, age 6, for winning Moontrug's top prize for describing and drawing her own Seawig! This one's a corker! Keep an eye on Moontrug's website as she's always running good competitions.



I just remembered, for a dinner at the Bologna Book Fair last year, I designed this Draw-Your-Own-Seawig sheet for all the adults to draw at the table. But I can't remember if I posted it on my blog, so here it is, if you'd like to give Cliff a Seawig! You'll make this Rambling Isle very happy. WHAT can you pile on his head? Use drawing, magazine collage, whatever you like! Download the PDF here. And do tweet me your results (I'm @jabberworks) or post them on my Facebook Author page, I'd love to see them!)

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55. EXTRAORDINARY WARREN by Sarah Dillard - GIVEAWAY!


Not only have Sarah Dillard and I been roomies at the Kindling Words Conference in Vermont several times, I'm also a huge fan of her work. She read a portion of her latest creation at the last conference, EXTRAORDINARY WARREN and there wasn't a dry eye in the room from laughing so hard!
     A chicken who wants to be special is convinced by a hungry rat that he is no ordinary chicken, but Chicken Supreme!!!! The humor is off the charts hilarious for all readers, even though the intended audience is the youngest chapter book reader. This one hits ALL the buttons. I'm thrilled to have Sarah here today to talk about EXTRAORDINARY WARREN.

Q. Sarah, this is one 'out there' idea! How did it come to you?
A.
Thanks so much. This was such a fun book to do. It started when I did a doodle of a chicken looking at an egg and wondered what that chicken was thinking about. It seemed that he had some pretty big life questions about who he was and where he came from and where he was going. Warren evolved from that. He really is kind of a philosopher I think. I knew I needed a villain and a rat seemed like the obvious choice. I've always loved Templeton from Charlotte's Web. I loved the idea that Warren befriends an egg but I also knew that at some point that egg was going to have to hatch. Somehow it all came together.

Q. Was it tricky to pull off the subtlety all the way through the story?
A.
I think sometimes I am too subtle! But I will say that I wrote and rewrote this story many many times. I was lucky to have had wonderful input along the way from my fabulous agent Lori Nowicki at Painted Words and also my incredible critique group. And I was lucky to have an extraordinary editor in Karen Nagel.

Q. I know you as a more quiet soul - where did this comic genius streak come from!?
A.
I am a quiet person but quiet doesn't necessarily mean serious. I have always had a pretty strong funny side as well.

Q. I love the simple shapes and limited color palette in EXTRAORDINARY WARREN - different from some of your other works. What was your approach?
A.
Before I started writing, I think that my art was more lovely and rich. I thought I would probably write like that too, but everything seems to come out funny. I had to make adjustments to my work. At first that was kind of scary, but then it felt very liberating. Instead of approaching the book thinking I will give this book my look, I turned it around and thought what look does this book need me to give it.
      Warren definitely dictated the art for this book. I tried a lot of approaches but a nice simple line with flat color was what worked best. The limited palette was at the suggestion of my art director. At first it seemed horrifying and impossible. But I started looking at a lot of illustrations are from the 1920's and '30s, which I have always loved, especially the work of L. Leslie Brooke, Maud and Miska Petersham, Maginel Wright Enright and her wonderful illustrations in the My Bookhouse series, and Winsor Mcay's Little Nemo's Adventures in Slumberland. One thing that really strikes me about all of those illustrations is the beautiful line and flat colors. Due to printing processes then, many of those illustrations were just one or two colors and black. I realized that black could be used not just as line but also as a color, which led to a nice bold graphic look that really works for Warren.
      I started the book thinking that I would work in my usual water color and gouache, but it became clear that the best way to achieve the look that I wanted would be to work digitally, which was a big change for me. It does seem sort of ironic that looking at old illustrations led me to work this way!

Click the image above to see it larger in a new window.

Q. I'd love to hear about your path into the publishing biz, and especially about the path for EXTRAORDINARY WARREN to publication. Have you publishers been over the top about it since day one? (I should think so!)
A.
Amazingly, not everyone fell in love with Warren immediately. He was rejected many times, but with each rejection there were useful comments that helped me to make Warren stronger. If I were to give any advice to people trying to get published, it would be don't give up and learn to accept criticism and use it to your advantage. And again, don't give up. Really, persistence is the most important piece of the puzzle.

Q. What will you do to celebrate the release of EXTRAORDINARY WARREN?
A.
I've been visiting blogs and have some book signings coming up but mostly I've been hard at work on Extraordinary Warren Saves the Day, which will be out in October. I don't want to give too much away about that one, but I will tell you that Warren and Egg are going to cross the road.

Q. Thanks so much for stopping by Sarah! I can't wait to see what you come up with next!
A.
Thank You!

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56.






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57. Krab Jab open - A Peculiar Alchemy

Saturday evening, I got to attend a very lovely gallery open, named A Peculiar Alchemy at Krab Jab Studios -
 This one was particularly special to me, given that it was for Norman and Tory Taber - my sister and her husband. :-)

 I may be a bit biased, but thought this an exceedingly lovely show - a charming mix of paintings, photo-collage and assemblages. 

(One of Tory's 'Tattered Faerie Specimen" paintings. Look at those wings!)

 There were interesting, quirky Victorian items decorating the studio (the Victorian Tea Party/food table will be featured in the following post).

 Norman's photo-collages (in hand-made frames of reclaimed cherry wood), and 'boxes'.

( "Booth", by Norman Taber)

 All the art is tagged, like Victorian Cabinet of Curiosities specimens.

 ("#75" - one of Norman's boxes.)

It was a dramatically beautiful day.

 ("The Little Mermaid", by Tory Taber)

There was a nice and steady turn-out -

- as well as an Artist Talk by Tory - describing their work and process.

 (Tory's gorgeous sketchbook)

 Tory- with Krab Jab facilitator, Julie Baroh.

 ("Why Can't I Be You?", by Tory Taber)

It was truly a lovely evening and an even more stunning show. If you're in the area, do yourself a favor and go see it in person. If you're not local, at least look at the online catalog. It's a treat!

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58. Riccardo Guasco

Riccardo Guasco via grainedit.com

Meet Riccardo Guasco, aka ”Rik”, a cartoonist, illustrator and painter based in Alessandria, Italy. Influenced by movements such as Cubism and Futurism he crafts rich compositions brimming with warm muted tones.

 

 

 

Riccardo Guasco via grainedit.com

 

Riccardo Guasco via grainedit.com

Riccardo Guasco via grainedit.com

Selected works are available for sale at his Society6 shop.

 

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Also worth viewing:
Timo Meyer
Josh Emrich
Javier Garcia Interview

Not signed up for the Grain Edit RSS Feed yet? Give it a try. Its free and yummy.
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Sponsor // Wallpapered Maps






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59. EASTER 2014 - tesco gifts

And also snapped in Tesco are Easter gift bags, wrap, decorations. napkins, kitchen gifts and kids tableware.

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60. Why Did CG Hub Shut Down Without Warning Its Users?

It's been one week now since CG Hub, the popular portfolio site and social network for digital artists, unexpectedly shut down, leaving thousands of its users angry and confused.

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61. Golden Gate Bridge

One more post to end the day ... OK ... now last minute packing ... YIKE!!

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62. The letter S

#tbt

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63. Dennis Nolan and the Hartford Art School


Yesterday I visited the Hartford Art School in Connecticut, part of the University of Hartford, to give a lecture about picture making and world building.

After the talk, a group of about 50 students invited me to do a watercolor demo. I had a great model, someone I've painted many times before: my good friend Dennis Nolan, professor of illustration and noted children's book illustrator

Since I only had a half hour, I used the most direct method I know for portraits, starting with big shapes of watercolor laid on wet with a big brush, and then finishing with a few details and textures with water-soluble colored pencils, drybrush watercolor, and a few touches of gouache.

Here's Dennis afterward with his daughter Evie, a student at Hartford. The painting is in a Moleskine water media notebook, using a Schmincke watercolor set.

If you're a high school student interested in studying illustration, I recommend the program at Hartford. It's led by not only Dennis Nolan, but also Bill Thomson, and Doug Anderson. Their program is strong in observational drawing and painting, and the seniors create their own children's picture book from start to finish, and they also have the opportunity to study animation. The illustration program is very popular; this year they have the largest sophomore enrollment ever.
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Dennis Nolan's faculty page at Hartford Art School
Previous post on the Hartford Art School

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64. Still Hip to be Blair




Nice article about the incredible Mary Blair. Check it out here - I was interviewed for the article along with some of my favorite artists.


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65. Interview at All Creativelike

I was so happy to be interviewed by Leigh Medeiros at All Creativelike. I have worked with Leigh as a consultant and she is fantastic. I highly recommend that you check out All Creativelike and the many ways that Leigh works with artists. Coaching, products for artists, Retreats & Workshops, Classes, Research/Story Notes-she does it all. Subscribe to her blog to see the many way that she works with creative people and be sure to read the testimonials-she is the real deal.



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66. Falkenstern & Heller Kudos Plus Book Signing

When Lisa Falkenstern emailed me letting me know about her new book and book signing (it hit the book shelves on Tax Day), I asked if she would tell me how it came about. She said, “This book started a few years ago, when I was showing my editor, Margery Cuyler at Marshall Cavendish (now Two Lions), an idea for a picture book done in steampunk style.

lisafalkensternsteamcover

Steampunk, often described as Victorian science fiction, is a genre I love. I had been collecting gears and clock parts for years with plans to use the pieces as still life props. The imagery of steampunk gears, metal machinery and steam engines is so rich and interesting to look at, I thought that the progression from still life to picture book would work well.

lisafalkensternsteam

 

“Margery liked my idea, however she suggested an alphabet book. I did a rough dummy, and after the idea was approved, I started work on how I would present a steampunk alphabet. I decided that the individual letters should also be illustrated as though built with steampunk parts. That way they would be part of the workshop setting I was playing with.

lisafalkensternC

Then my husband and I spent a large part of our vacation in the Outerbanks going through the dictionary, selecting which words to use. We had a long list and Margery helped make the final selections. Since the text of the book only featured a single sentence for each letter of the alphabet, I decided to illustrate a background plot in which the two mice are building something in their workshop. Each letter propels the story along until the mice reveal their masterpiece, with the letter ‘Z’, of course.

lisafalkensternD

Once I had the whole concept, I started all the illustrations. I draw and paint from reference materials. First, I collected an immense amount of photographs as well as buying parts of lamps and other objects that worked as steampunk. Then I made models of the mice characters and a model of the steam engine.  My husband posed for the mice, which is funny, considering he is six feet, four inches!

lisafalkensternF

I did the roughs of the letters first, and when finished, I added the mice and had them interact with the letters.  Then I did final drawings, and finished the book using oil paints.

lisaFalkensternendpapers

And that was it!

SAVE APRIL 26TH AND 27TH – LISA’S HAVING A BOOK SIGNING AND EVERYONE IS INVITED!

falkensternHetzel poster.2.lores

Ginger HellerThe Huffington Post featured an interview yesterday on Ginger Heller and her new book, The Kid Who Beat Wall Street and Saved Africa.

Here is the link:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/heather-hummel/an-interview-with-ginger-heller_b_5070333.html

After I read the interview, I emailed Ginger to ask why she was calling her book a YA Novel. Here is her answer:

“I use the YA label only when it’s all that’s available. My book is really a “tween book” for ages 10-14. I have had some success with reluctant readers in 9th grade, (ages 14/15) if it’s presented right.”

gingerheller2014-04-07-KidWhoBeatWallStreetandSavedAfricaMy story, trading stocks and commodities on the internet, is a sophisticated one as are the issues with which I deal.

The fact that there is a “dictionary,” in the back of the book (I refer to it as my appendix A, 100 Words of Interest ) helps the reader easily look up some difficult words. The interesting part is that the definition of these words appear in the same grammatical form as they do in the book.

As for how did I get the interview, the writer knew of my book and thought it would be of interest.

Click here to take a look on Amazon. If you have a Kindle you can buy the book for $3.99 or if you are a Prime Member you can read the book for free.

Congratulations! Lisa and Ginger.

Talk tomorrow,

Kathy


Filed under: Kudos, Middle Grade Novels, Picture Book, success Tagged: book signing, Chance to win signed book, Ginger Heller, Lisa Falkenstern, Steampunk ABC, The Huffington Post

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67. Nina Cosford



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68. Zoo Sketches

Every semester, I take my character design for Children's Book Class to the Zoo. It's always a fun, relaxing day. Here are a few sketches from that day. 


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69. Malki Sushestva


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70. Paula: Easter Bunnies at Work!

Just a little bunny fun for Easter!

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71. sketch dailies "lady of the lake"


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72. Krab Jab open - A Peculiar Alchemy, Tea Party!

I did get to help out with the 'treats' for this open. Given that the art is fairly Victorian in theme and feel, we opted to go with a tea party theme. 

Also incorporating the show's title, we made sure the various elements were peculiar combinations of flavors -

 Such as the Salted-Honey-Lavender-Shortbread, and the Almond-Apricot scones with Lemon Curd.

 Here - Cheddar-Chives scones with Bay Laurel Clotted Cream.

 There was a tower of meringue bites! Cardamon-Rose, Spicy-Chai, and Chocolate-Mint flavored.

 The table was decorated with springy-things - Sweet Cicely fronds, moss, violets, tulips, camelias, etc...

 - as well as a collection of Taber's Victorian Christmas cards, mounted on antique photo boards...

 Tea was a peculiar combination of Hibiscus and Passionfruit and other yummy herbs.

Delicious and beautiful. Lovely evening overall.

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73. EASTER 2014 - john lewis

It is my last day for Easter cards and we start with John Lewis who this year are stocking designs by Laura Darrington, Caroline Gardner, Cardmix, Susan O'Hanlon and Woodmansterne. Their own range centres on a bunny rabbit design on fresh green and colourful eggs. Some card designs are still available online or in John Lewis stores now along with decorations and gifts.

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74. Painting on the iPad

This morning's warm up on the iPad.

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75. Write Up on The Illustrators Market Blog


Patti Gay did a nice write up about me on her illustrators blog. There are some other cool profiles there too so check them out while you are there!

She lives in California now but went to CCAD in Columbus. Check out her site!

http://theillustratorsmarket.blogspot.com/2014/04/christina-wald.html

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