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Things I learned at the SLC Comic Con yesterday:
1. I was supposed to geek out on the famous firefly insect Adam Baldwin but I don't like insects much.
2. I take really good blurry pictures. Most people struggle with this technique - not I. Here is Corel Painter artist Don Seegmiller better known as Neil Young.
3. I enjoy meeting online friends in person like Mathew Armstrong and Jason Kim - Disney interactive artists.
4. Reconnecting with my blurry friends like Disney artist Ryan Wood.
5. ...and gopher turned Japanese poster artist Jed Henry (google Ukiyo-e Heroes)
6. That Ty Carter is trying to bulk up for his next career as an MMA fighter...
7. ...and Jake Parker is already an MMA fighter...so don't disrespect.
8. Oh - and that Bjorn Thorkelson created the "Accurasee sketch caddie" the BEST product I saw at comic con! It's an art tools carrier that fits over the cover of your sketchbook. I was blown away by this nifty device. Many of you know that I mostly sketch on my iPad now but I had to have one of these for the times when I take my sketchbook out. I remember what a pain it was to try to carry everything I wanted - no longer! Check it out at his website.
9. That many of my students from UVU although blurry, have become amazing artists and will be forces to be reckoned with in animation, visual development, and illustration.
10. And finally that Jared Salmond has become completely invisible. People loved watching his pen sign all those posters. When I had him in class he was only "mostly" invisible but through hard work and determination he has finally arrived at his present form of, well, not being there....and for his next feat he will become mute.
Disney & Lucasfilm have released some exciting news that I have been dying to share…
“Disney Publishing Worldwide announced today the upcoming global release of four new books based on the original Star Wars film trilogy. The classic Saga will come to life like never before through adaptations by bestselling children’s authors Tom Angleberger, Tony DiTerlizzi, Adam Gidwitz, and R.J. Palacio. Each of these celebrated authors will bring their contemporary, unique voice to the galaxy far, far away, bridging the multi-arc storyline in anticipation of the release of Star Wars Episode VII in December 2015.
The Star Wars Saga program will hit stores beginning in October of 2014, with THE ADVENTURES OF LUKE SKYWALKER, JEDI KNIGHT a picture book written by New York Times bestselling author Tony DiTerlizzi (The Spiderwick Chronicles), illustrated with concept art created by Ralph McQuarrie, for the original Star Wars films. This winning collaboration, combining the entire storyline of the original trilogy, is bound to delight dedicated Star Wars fans and enthrall readers new to the series.
Additional titles to follow include new retellings of STAR WARS: A NEW HOPE by R.J. Palacio (Wonder), STAR WARS: THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK by Adam Gidwitz (A Tale Dark and Grimm) and STAR WARS: RETURN OF THE JEDI by Tom Angleberger (Origami Yoda series), which will be illustrated by award-winning Star Wars concept artist Iain McCaig.”
Knowing full well what a geek I am, the folks at Lucasfilm contacted me last fall to see if I would be interested in taking the late Ralph McQuarrie’s concept art to create a picture book retelling the original STAR WARS trilogy. Without hesitation, I agreed.
How I pored over my Art of Star Wars when I was a young padawan artist. Within those pages my imagination exploded like a Death Star as I studied the blueprints of movie magic. And, of course, most of the drawings and paintings in the Art of Star Wars were by Ralph. I was familiar with many of his iconic images, but not prepared for the 200+ jpegs that soon arrived in my dropbox.
I printed out small thumbnail-sized images and began sorting them in order of each film and scene. I laid the book out as if I were not only the author, but the artist as well. As I designed the flow of the book, I could see where the text would have to work harder to tell the story and where the art would do the job – just like the division of labor in a true picture book.
As a fan, I also tried to incorporate images that I had not seen in previously published books. I’m hoping the parents reading The Adventures of Luke Skywalker, Jedi Knight will enjoy a nice blend of Ralph’s iconic imagery mixed with some fresh new art (I even figured out how to include his cover painting to Splinter of the Mind’s Eye)
I am also incredibly excited for the other participating authors involved with the chapter book adaptations of the original films (like Adam Gidwitz here, hanging out with me and Yoda). Earlier this year, we met at Skywalker Ranch to discuss our projects and immerse ourselves in a galaxy far, far away. Ten year-old Tony had died and gone to heaven.
(Left to right: Ten year-old T, Tom Angleberger, Luke Skywalker in disguise, R.J. Palacio and Adam Gidwitz)
There’s no question that the STAR WARS myth has impacted me as a storyteller. I am humbled and honored to be the author asked to retell George Lucas’ classic space-age story of good triumphing evil for the next generation.
May the force be with you.
Fairy School and Empath School to sign up and reserve your space
(Delving Deeper switched to May start-up date)
Have you ever found yourself salivating while reading about meals in a book? Graphic designer Dinah Fried will take your hunger to the next level.
She has created a photo book of meals featured in classic literature called Fictitious Dishes: An Album of Literature’s Most Memorable Meals which just came out on Harper Collins. The book includes fifty photos of meals photographs from books ranging from The Secret Garden to Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas. Check it out:
Showcasing famous meals including the madcap tea party from Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, the watery gruel from Oliver Twist, the lavish chicken breakfast from To Kill a Mockingbird, the stomach-turning avocado-and-crabmeat salad from The Bell Jar, and the seductive cupcakes from The Corrections, this unique volume pairs each place setting with the text from the book that inspired its creation. Interesting food facts and entertaining anecdotes about the authors, their work, and their culinary predilections complete this charming book, which is sure to whet the appetites of lovers of great literature and delicious dishes.
New Career Opportunities Daily: The best jobs in media.
Giancarlo Volpe, showrunner of Green Lantern the Animated Series has drawn a comic about a focus group test of the cartoon. It’s an interesting behind the scenes of how the testers said the kids wanted the opposite of what Volpe thought would work for the show. Luckily Bruce Timm comes to the rescue.
Focus groups can be pretty brutal. If you know what you’re doing, they can be a hindrance, but if you don’t…sometimes a truth is revealed. Unfortunately a lot of kids entertainment is heavily focus grouped and you can usually tell the ones that are because they are bland as hell.
Cartoon Brew has more tales of focus groups gone wrong.
Samsung has partnered with Amazon on a new Kindle app for its line of Galaxy devices. Like other Kindle apps, Kindle for Samsung, allows users to purchase and read eBooks and periodicals from Amazon.
In addition, the two companies have launched a free book service called Samsung Book Deals, which is only accessible through the app.
Samsung customers that download the app can choose one free eBook a month from Amazon for a year with their Samsung account.
New Career Opportunities Daily: The best jobs in media.
Learn how to edit your tagline, customize comment prompts, and schedule posts -- three great tips to have in your blogging back pocket.
Hey guys! Ready to see what we got in the YABC Mailbox this past month?
First, here's the mess I made unboxing it all:
I bet you already spy some goodies in there, don't you?
On to the book haul!
Some great titles from Random House Kids! And look, a diverse YA heroine! Woot!
I'm just a *tad* excited to have LET THE STORM BREAK in my hands.
Great haul from Simon Teen and Random House Kids!
Some more Simon Teen pretties and two from Merit Press!
Here we have beauties from HarlequinTeen, Orbit, and Sourcebooks.
Titles from Scholastic, St. Martins, Disney/Hyperion, Macmillan, and Entangled Teen!
Gorgeous hardbacks from Harper Teen!
You want more Harper Teen titles? *hands you some*
Still not satisfied? *hands you MOAR HARPER TEEN*
What? Still not enough? You guys are hard to please.
Ooooh and finally, Candlewick in the house!
Pretties from Candlewick, Scholastic, and Simon Kids.
Cuties from Scholastic and Simon Kids.
Adams Media, Candlewick, Random House Kids, and Peachtree.
How much does everyone need the Fairies book? Cuz I *needs* it.
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt has Middle Grade Mania with these spring titles!
Moar Candlewick, Peachtree, and Random House Kids. I absolutely adore the Alice-Miranda books!
Some incredible hardback cover art from Candlewick and Random House Kids.
I love these little 3D pocket guides from Candlewick. I have a dozen of them and still need more!
Mother's Day picture books! Nothing more adorable.
These are from Random House Kids and Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.
A few for the older kiddos from Candlewick. Gimme the Lizzy Bennet's Diary, please!
Beautiful full color picture books from Disney/Hyperion, Candlewick, and Peachtree.
Which books are you most excited about? Fill out the rafflecopter form below and leave your picks in the comments. I'll pick two of you to choose a book from the current Prize Shelf (shown below).
a Rafflecopter giveaway
This morning over at Kirkus, I take a look at Maira Kalman and Daniel Handler’s Girls Standing on Lawns, to be published by the Museum of Modern Art in early May. It made me want to find my own family photos of girls or women standing on lawns, which are in that piece over at Kirkus. Pictured above is my maternal grandmother.
That Q&A will be here today.
* * *
Pictured above is Dr. Alan Rabinowitz. I chatted with him at Kirkus yesterday about his picture book, A Boy and a Jaguar (Houghton Mifflin), illustrated by Catia Chen and also set to be released in early May. “This story,” Rabinowitz tells me, “is not just about a stuttering boy who studied jaguars, but about all children who feel sad, abused, or misunderstood by the world at large ….” It’s a remarkable story. That Q&A is here.
Until Sunday …
* * * * * * *
Photo of Alan Raboniwitz by Steve Winter and used with permission.
This photo of the cast of GEorge Miller’s aborted JLA movie shows how close we came to having a very very young JLA movie. Australian tax credit woes and the Writer Strike of ’07-08 scuttled this.
Was it for the best?
Andrew Wheeler has more.
I'll say it again, inspiration abounds!
You are walking down the street and have a great idea, but as soon as you get back to your computer it’s gone. All writers have experienced it.
Lawrence Smith, the founder of the storytelling community SMITH Magazine, has created an iPhone app to help solve this challenge. Six Words is designed to help you quickly write down ideas in six words. Users can write six words on any topic and include a photo to help keep track of their ideas on-the-go.
There is a social component as well, for users that want to engage their ideas with the community. Writers can share their six words to get comments from the group and comment on others’ ideas. There is even “The Daily Six” and “Editor’s Note,” both of which highlight popular ideas.
New Career Opportunities Daily: The best jobs in media.
Notes of Forgiveness: A Daughter’s Journey and a Mother’s Gift by Sarada Bonnett & Sandra E. Cordray
Alright, friends of children's book art everywhere! Have I got great news for you! If you've been looking to collect some amazing-and-hard-to-find children's book art from some amazing-and-hard-to-find artists, AND you've been wanting to plunk down some good money on an excellent cause, then LOOK NO FURTHER! My ridiculously talented friend Carson Ellis has put together an online auction of some of the best children's books artists out there, and everything earned from the sale of the art goes straight to a great school called Victory Academy in Oregon. Apparently, this school for autistic kids is amazing, but needs a permanent building. So fulfill two of your new year's resolution now: Help out a good cause, and own some awesome art!
to whet your whistle, here's a list of the artists selling their work:
MARLA FRAZEE * JEN CORACE * LEUYEN PHAM * NIKKI MCCLURE * JON KLASSEN * ADAM REX * ELEANOR DAVIS * LAURA PARK * ROMAN MURADOV * HEATHER ROSS * GILBERT FORD * MATT MYERS * SOPHIE BLACKALL * LISA BROWN * MELISSA GUION * DIANA SUDYKA * LANE SMITH * CHRIS TURNHAM * CHUCK GROENINK * CARIN BERGER * MO WILLEMS * GREG PIZZOLI * MARIA VAN LIESHOUT * JOANNA NEBORSKY * CARSON ELLIS
i'm not sure myself why i'm on this list with these cool people, but i'll take it! here's my piece below. and PLEASE pass it on! the more people who see, the more support for the school!
Posted on 4/18/2014
Question: I'm writing my first fiction novel, and I would like to know if it's okay to use a real person from the past who is deceased in a fiction novel.
Netflix has released the trailer for the second season of Orange is the New Black.
The video embedded above features scenes with Taylor Schilling as Piper Chapman, Kate Mulgrew as Galina “Red” Reznikov, and Uzo Aduba as Suzanne “Crazy Eyes” Warren. Follow this link to hear the cast describe the forthcoming season in three words.
According to Time, “the series premiered to critical acclaim last summer, and though Netflix does not release its audience data, it was rumored to have outpaced Netflix’s other popular originals, including House of Cards and the Arrested Development reboot, in viewership.” All 13 episodes of season two will come out on June 06, 2014.
New Career Opportunities Daily: The best jobs in media.
By: Mark Meyers,
Blog: Mark Meyers Art
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A few months back I was asked to paint a violin to help raise money for Gateway Preparatory Academy. It was fun to do something a little different, and painting on an object adds a fun twist. You can go here to look at all the instruments and to bid. The artwork is very impressive and I'm flattered to have mine alongside some other great artist!
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Here is my poetry selection for the Friday before Easter. It’s about PEEPS©--which I used to love to eat when I was a little kid.
By Elaine Magliaro
I hear them peeping
in their package,
I break open
their plastic shell,
hold soft hatchlings
in my hands.
One by one
a chattering of chicks,
chubby marshmallow chicks
coated with colored sugar.
I lick their bright yellow down
from my fingertips.
Cape Breton Glass
Walking slowly, touching sometimes
With warm fingers in the early morning breeze.
We look for the magic beneath our feet
And wonder at the colors and shapes
Strewn around us by a greater sculptor.
Glass formed by the strength of pounding and passion
Of the mighty power of western water,
Grinding up onto the French flavored shore.
We come together for warmth
And drift apart again to search for more treasure,
As the slowly rising sun tries to warm the salty air.
To walk here is magic
To be here with you is morning personified
In the great spreading light of green glowing sea glass.
Denis Hearn 2008
This is my cat, Flubby. He doesn't move for days at a time. That is, unless, I'm trying to paint him.
Love, love, love, love, LOVE THIS MAN.Hat tip to Jules.
This work is copyrighted material. All opinions are those of the writer, unless otherwise indicated. All book reviews are UNSOLICITED, and no money has exchanged hands, unless otherwise... Read the rest of this post
It is 1992 and postmodernism is the dominent art movement of the moment. Rafe Sinclair, founder of The American Academy of Classical Art in New York City, is a classicist through and through, but now he is facing grumblings from some of his board member who think other art forms should be introduced, a board that wouldn't mind removing Rafe as head of the Academy.
But his Board isn't the only problem Rafe has. First, Rafe is a vampire and is trying desperatgely to hold on to his sense of humanity even as he is forced to kill in order to live. Second, Rafe was an art student in the 1930. He had met and fallen in love with a young Jewish woman, a fellow artist, just before World War II began, and he is still in love with her, although he believes she had perished in the Holocaust.
Tessa Moss is a young art student at the Academy, talented but naive and involved in an unhealthy relationship with another artist, the very narcissistic Lucian Swain. Rafe never really noticed Tessa's work until one day when he notices a sketch she has done of a woman with a child by a suitcase that has the name Witzotsky written on it. The woman is covering the eyes of the child with her hand. Rafe begins to take a special interest in Tessa and her work.
Witzotsky is a familiar name to Rafe and it turns out that Tessa has sketched a picture depicting a relative of hers named Sofia Witzotsky. And, in fact, Sofia is the very same woman that Rafe was involved with, the same woman he thought he had lost in the Holocaust. Or had he? After all, he never really knew what Sofia's fate had actually been? Before long, Tessa and Rafe are involved with each other, which is against school rules and just the kind of infraction the board could use to remove Rafe from his position as head of the Academy. But if Tessa can help Rafe discover what really happened to Sofia, maybe it was worth the risk.
Helen Mayles Shankman has written a long, complicated book encompassing two time periods, and a fair amount of different characters. It is very well written, engaging, compelling and I actually enjoyed the intricacies of the plot twists and turns. Rafe and Tessa are believable (well, except for the vampire part), well defined, likable characters, each carrying a lot of baggage that goes back to the Holocaust: Rafe may have lost the love of his life, and Tessa has lost one whole family line on her father's side.
The Color of Light
is a novel that will definitely please your romantic sensibilities, and your penchant for historical fiction and has all the elements of a good mystery novel all in one long (574 pages) story. Shankman has a MFA in painting, so her art/artistic descriptions are pretty spot on and you will have no trouble picturing works of art that don't really exist.
My vampire fan days are long behind me and vampires are certainly not something I expected to read about when I started this blog. And yet, I have certainly read my share of fantasy and science fiction here, so why not vampires? But the fact that Rafe Sinclair is a vampire is only a plot device allowing the narrative its dual time frame with him in both time periods as a man his age and it worked.
And generally the YA/Adult books I review here are of the cozy type, but variety is the spice of life and The Color of Life
is a spicy novel that could be classified as New Adult/Adult. What I mean is that it has more sexual content than most of the YA/Adult I review.
My friend Zohar over at Man of La Book
recommended The Color of Light to me and I am so glad he did. And I am paying it forward.
This book is recommended for mature readers age 15+
This book was sent to me by the author
A Reading Group Guide for The Color of Light is available HERE
Here is another image from the Two Can Art Collection. This is one of my favorites and I think it fits the topic natural. This is done with Noah's painted textures assembled together.
Posted on 4/18/2014
Question: In my book I have like 5 or main characters depending on how you look at it because there's always at least 5 but for one book I'll introduce
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*Please join Rose City Reader every Friday to share the first sentence (or so) of the book you are reading, along with your initial thoughts about the sentence, impressions of the book, or anything else the opener inspires. Please remember to include the title of the book and the author's name. *Taken directly from Rose City Reader's Blog Page.
***************** This week's Book Beginnings is taken from Ember Island by Kimberley Freeman.
"June sunshine blessed Tilly Kirkland's wedding. Only the luckiest brides married in June, and Tilly could not believe how lucky she had been."
Even though it sounds like a romance novel, it is a book about finding secrets hidden in an old homestead. I love books like that. :)
*****************THE FORGOTTEN SEAMSTRESS is a book I finished last week.
It was wonderful.
My full review can't be posted until May 30, but here are the last few lines from my review.
"If you enjoy reading family history and the history of family heirlooms created by a past generation and found by the present generation, you will definitely enjoy THE FORGOTTEN SEAMSTRESS.
The writing is flawless, the characters are lovable and unforgettable, the storyline will definitely hold your interest until the last page. And...the last few pages will have you glued to each word. 5/5"