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Viewing: Blog Posts Tagged with: Caldecott Medal, Most Recent at Top [Help]
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1. Caldecott Thoughts 2013

This is not my hat  This year’s winner of the Caldecott Medal is This Is Not My Hat by Jon Klassen (Candlewick Press, 2012).  This story is a big fish tale, but not in the way you might think. It’s also a small fish tale about a small fish who stole the hat of a big fish. He’s pretty sure he can get away with it, but stealing is wrong, isn’t it? Do you think he’ll get away with it? Do you think he should? This story certainly made me smile. Mr. Klassen does a superb job moving the story along with short sentences and illustrations that change ever so slightly as they move to the right and off of the page.

Creepy carrots! The ALSC chose five honor books this year! Among them is Creepy Carrots by Aaron Reynolds and illustrated by Peter Brown (Simon & Schuster, 2012). This fun picture book is cleverly illustrated with just enough color to set an eerie mood. If picture books were horror movies, this one would be rated G. It’s just so much fun; I read it three or four times. Jasper Rabbit has this terrible feeling that carrots are following him. Is it his imagination? Or have the creepy carrots devised a plan to keep Jasper out of the carrot patch?

Extra yarn Extra Yarn by Mac Barnett and illustrated by Jon Klassen (Balzer+Bray, 2012) is my favorite of the picks this year. The story includes everything from a magic box of colorful yarn, to an evil archduke, to a sweet, young heroine who cares very much for her town. I like how the town gets more and more colorful as the story goes along. But the best part is the quiet, unassuming, and peaceful ending.

Green This honor book simply titled Green by Laura Vaccaro Seeger (Roaring Brook Press, 2012) is beautifully illustrated in different shades of green, one of my favorite colors. It sports minimal text and peek-a-boo cut outs on several of the pages, which tie one page cleverly to the next. As you may guess, all of the illustrations depict the great outdoors and the natural beauty of the world, and showcase trees, flowers, animals, vegetables, and more.

One cool friend One Cool Friend by Toni Buzzeo and illustrated by David Small (Dial Books, 2012) stars a polite, young boy named Elliot who decides he wants a penguin. I like Elliot; he has a lot of character. I like the combination of color and black and white for the multimedia illustrations. My favorite picture shows Elliot and the penguin skating in his room. This is a fun story that will make you laugh. And the twist at the end is the best!

Sleep like a tiger Sleep Like a Tiger by Mary Logue and illustrated by Pamela Zagarenski (Houghton Mifflin Books, 2012) is a dreamy, bedtime story with muted colors that fill up the pages. The paintings are a mix of fantasy and reality and, along with the solid text, tell the story of a young girl who doesn’t want to go to sleep. I just love the pictures of the dog asleep on the couch; just gorgeous!

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2. ALA Youth Media Awards Have Been Announced!

Earlier today the American Library Association announced the 2013 Youth Media Awards Winners. Click here to read the press release.

Highlights include:

John Newbery Medal Winner (for the most outstanding contribution to children’s literature):

The One and Only Ivan written by Katherine Applegate (HarperCollins Children’s Books, 2012)

Randolph Caldecott Medal Winner (for the most distinguished American picture book for children):

This Is Not My Hat, illustrated and written by Jon Klassen (Candlewick Press, 2012).

Coretta Scott King (Author) Book Award Winner (recognizing an African American author of outstanding books for children and young adults):

Hand in Hand: Ten Black Men Who Changed America, written by Andrea Davis Pinkney, illustrated by Brian Pinkney (Disney/Jump at the Sun Books, 2012).

Coretta Scott King (Illustrator) Book Award Winner (recognizing an African American illustrator of outstanding books for children and young adults):

I, Too, Am America, illustrated by Bryan Collier, written by Langston Hughes (Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers, 2012)

Pura Belpré (Author) Award Winner (honoring a Latino writer whose children’s books best portray, affirm and celebrate the Latino cultural experience):

Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe, written by Benjamin Alire Sáenz, (Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers, 2012)

Pura Belpré (Illustrator) Award Winner (honoring a Latino illustrator whose children’s books best portray, affirm and celebrate the Latino cultural experience):

Martín de Porres: The Rose in the Desert, illustrated by David Diaz, written by Gary D. Schmidt (Clarion Books, 2012)

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3. 2012 Children’s Book Award Winners Announced


This morning I got up at 5 a.m. to see (via webcast) the 2012 winners of the biggest awards in children's publishing--the American Library Association (ALA) awards.  The film industry has their Golden Globes® and their Oscars®, and we have the Caldecott and Newbery Medals, the Coretta Scott King Award, and the Michael J. Printz Award.  Unlike most other book awards, the major children's book awards given by the ALA have no lists of finalists or nominees.  It's a surprise every single year (with plenty of speculation beforehand) and I kind of love the secrecy.  This year's announcement had both the unexpected and the "ah, of course" books on the lists (including some 2011 Best of the Month titles)--you just never know who is going to win what. Congratulations to this year's winning and honored authors and illustrators:


2012 Caldecott Medal for the most distinguished American picture book for children:


2012 Newbery Medal for the most outstanding contribution to children’s literature:



2012 Michael L. Printz Award for excellence in literature written for young adults:  

4. Kitten's First Full Moon

This black and white book may not seem like much at first glance, but Kevin Henke's Caldecott Medal-winning Kitten's First Full Moon will soon become a favorite upon opening the cover.  A little kitten, upon seeing the full moon for the first time, thinks it is a bowl of milk and sets off on an adventure to try and reach it.  Kitten's expressive face, and the simple illustrations and story will delight readers of all ages.

Try also:

My Friend Rabbit by Eric Rohman
City Dog, Country Frog by Mo Willems
Bark, George by Jules Feiffer
Gossie by Olivier Dunrea
The Tale of Tom Kitten by Beatrix Potter

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5. Learning From Mistakes

It’s a fact that I’ve learned a whole lot more from my writing mistakes than from my writing successes. Take, for example, the chapter book debacle.

The first manuscript I wrote was an 8,000-ish word chapter book called, "Eddie’s Chance to Dance." Except that I didn’t really know it was a chapter book. I just thought it was a charming tale that might be a tad short for juvenile fiction.

Then somebody told me it was a chapter book. Well, okay, no need to be all smartypants about it. It wasn’t like I hadn’t heard of chapter books. I’d bought a ton of them for my kiddies. I just hadn’t…what’s the word again? Oh, yeah. Read many of them. So I thought I’d better brush up on chapter books.

I checked out shelves full of these slim books from my local library and read every single one. And what I realized, after all that brushing up, was that my chapter book was not very good. Or to put it another way, Eddie didn’t stand a tap shoe's chance of getting published.

I’d made a big mistake. I dashed off a chapter book before I knew much about what makes a good chapter book. It seems like an obvious concept, to research before you write, but you’d be surprised how often writers (and I’m including myself here) will write something willy-nilly and expect the world (and I’m including mostly editors here) to love it.

I figured out a few things after all that reading, and not just about chapter books. For example, if I want to write for a market, say a webzine like WOW!Women-on-Writing, I’ll read a ton of issues before making a pitch. If I have a mystery novel in mind, I’ll read a couple Edgar Award winners before pounding out 50,000 words. And now that I write fiction for the kiddies, I’ve read picture books on the Caldecott Medal list, and chapter books and middle grade on the Newbery Medal list, and young adult novels on the Printz Award list. These days, I do my reading research.

Lesson learned.

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6. The Caldecott Is Coming . . . Soon, Soon

One of my favorite blogs is Calling Caldecott. It's co-written by Robin Smith (a second grade teacher and reviewer for Kirkus and Horn Book) and Lolly Robinson (who teaches children's lit. at the Harvard Graduate School of Education and is designer/production manager for Horn Book.)

November was Picture Book Month at the Horn Book and two exceptional articles in that section of the blog are "Over and Over," an emotional tribute to Charlotte Zolotow written by her daughter, Crescent Dragonwagon; and Patricia Gauch's article "The Picture Book as an Act of Mischief."

Moving on to the reviews of possible Caldecott Medal candidates, here are a few of the books they've featured:

 Bear Has a Story to Tell  written by Philip Stead, illustrated by Erin Stead. A Home for Bird written and illustrated by Philip Stead and And Then It's Spring by Julie Fogliano, illus by Erin Stead. Could this be another "Stead" year?

 Goldilocks and The Three Dinosaurs by Mo Willems. Could the committee go for a fractured fairy tale? Maybe an Honor book?

Penny and Her Song.  Kevin Henkes. For the Geisel committee instead?

And my favorite:
Z is For Moose by Kelly Bingham and Paul Zelinsky. A wacky romp through the alphabet. Amazing to me that Paul Zelinsky, of the rich, traditional oil paintings, illustrated this with such freedom and verve. You can read Roger Sutton's interview with him on the Horn Book website.

Do you have a favorite Caldecott candidate?

6 Comments on The Caldecott Is Coming . . . Soon, Soon, last added: 12/21/2012
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7. Evaline Ness Collection Auction

Have you ever heard of Evaline Ness? She was an illustrator of many children’s books during the mid-20th century period. At a time when most illustration was still being done in a style of literal realism, Ness was among that group of stylistic pioneers whose work still influences the look of illustration today.

She also has the unusual distinction of having been married for a time to the famous FBI agent, Elliot Ness.

The Bloombury Auction House in New York has an upcoming auction featuring a collection of children’s books signed by Evaline Ness, her Caldecott medal for Sam, Bangs and Moonshine and some never before seen sketchbooks and dummies all of which come from her family collection.

The sale will take place at Bloomsbury Auctions New York on Wednesday, December 9th, but those who won’t be able to attend can view nearly a dozen pieces from the Ness collection in my Evaline Ness Flickr set.

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8. 2010 ALA Youth Media Awards Announced

Earlier today the American Library Association (ALA)  announced the top books, audiobooks and video for children and young adults – including the Caldecott, King, Newbery and Printz awards – at its Midwinter Meeting in Boston.

A complete list of all the 2010 literary award winners can be  seen here. Highlights include:

Winner of the John Newbery Medal ( for most outstanding contribution to children’s literature):
When You Reach Me written by Rebecca Stead

Winner of the Caldecott Medal (for most distinguished American picture book for children):
The Lion & the Mouse illustrated and written by Jerry Pinkney

Winner of the Coretta Scott King (Author) Book Award (recognizing an African American author and illustrator of outstanding books for children and young adults):

Bad News for Outlaws: The Remarkable Life of Bass Reeves, Deputy U.S. Marshal written by Vaunda Micheaux Nelson and illustrated by R. Gregory Christie

Winner of the Coretta Scott King (Illustrator) Book Award
My People illustrated by Charles R. Smith Jr. and written by Langston Hughes

Winner of the Pura Belpré (Illustrator) Award (honoring a Latino writer and illustrator whose children’s books best portray, affirm and celebrate the Latino cultural experience)

Book Fiesta!: Celebrate Children’s Day/Book Day; Celebremos El día de los niños/El día de los libros illustrated by Rafael López and written by Pat Mora

Winner of the Pura Belpré (Author) Award
Return to Sender written by Julia Alvarez

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9. Watch ALA winners on the Today Show

Missed seeing some of the ALA winners on the Today Show this morning? You can watch it here, featuring:
Rebecca Stead, author of When You Read Me (winner of the 2010 Newbery Medal);

Jerry Pinkey, illustrator of The Lion and the Mouse, winner of the 2010 Caldecott Medal;

and ALA President, Camila Alire.

It would have been nice if they’d had a bit longer segment on the author, illustrator, and winning books, but I’m happy they featured them at all. What do you think?

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

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10. Odds and Bookends: January 29

An Interesting Approach to Exciting Youngsters About Reading
What better way to get kids interested in reading than to make them the star of their very own personalized book?

Mixtape: 10 Songs About Libraries and Librarians
Check out these fun songs about libraries and librarians, including artists such as Frank Zappa and Green Day. You can even listen in to discover why these songs made the list.

Little House on the Prairie Continues to Wow Audiences
Everyone’s beloved story is back with a new musical twist. Be sure to check out this new musical, based on Laura Ingalls Wilder’s treasured classic storyline.

Baby-Sitters Club: Life After 30!
The acclaimed teenage gang gets a new twist as we ask the question: Where are they now? From Kristy Thomas to Stacey McGill, these projections will certainly bring back cherished memories.

The Caldecott, Newbery and Printz book awards go to…
John Pinkney’s exceptional illustrations were awarded the Caldecott Medal for capturing the true spirit of a classic fable. The Newbery Medal as well as the Printz Award were also given to some special talent for excellence in both children’s literature and young adult literature.

Books to Film: Martin Scorsese Continues the Trend
With the release of some truly spectacular new films based on classic children’s books, Brian Selznick’s “The Invention of Hugo Cabret” appears to be next in line.

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11. Drawing from a Story: Illustrations by Selected Caldecott Medal Winners

Last year I joined Rutgers’ (the State University of New Jersery, USA) Child_Lit service. This is a free, unmoderated discussion group convened for the express purpose of examining the theory and criticism of literature for children and young adults. For anyone interested in any aspect of children’s literature, I highly recommend signing up. The service provides a wealth of information and also makes my job a bit easier when looking for events that can be added to our Eventful World calendar.

Last week there was a post on Child_Lit that talked about  Drawing from a Story: Illustrations by Selected Caldecott Medal Winners, an exhibit taking place though May 23rd at the Brandywine River Museum in Chadds Ford, PA, USA.

Myths, fables, fairy tales, and folk tales are usually a child’s first steps into the world of literature, and the illustrations that often accompany the text when such stories are published for children stir the imagination and provide entrée to magical worlds. First awarded in 1938, the Caldecott Medal is considered the most prestigious award for children’s illustration. This exhibition will feature the works of selected Caldecott winners from seven decades, including Maurice Sendak, Dorothy Lathrop, David Wiesner [see image at right], Paul O. Zelinsky, Leo and Diane Dillon, Robert McCloskey, and 2010 medal winner, Jerry Pinkney, among many others.

Deidre Johnson responded on Child_Lit with the following comments which she has also allowed us to share with our readers :

I’ve seen it twice and can’t praise it enough. There’s material from most of the major archival collections, such as the Kerlan and deGrummond, as well as a generous sampling from the illustrators’ private collections.

The display is arranged beautifully — sometimes thematically (fairy tales grouped together, for example), sometimes by medium. There’s even an entire corner devoted to art from David Wiesner’s three winners. The exhibit includes not only art from the first Caldecott (and one of Caldecott’s own sketches for John Gilpin’s Ride!) but also from the two most recent winners. Some of the other materials show process (the McCloskey studies for Make Way for Ducklings seen in Marcus’s Caldecott Celebration are on display, and there are also studies for Rohmann’s My Friend Rabbit).

The Brandywine has hosted some fine exhibits associated with children’s literature in the past, but I think this is one of the best.

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12. December 2010 Events

(Click on event name for more information)

2011 PBBY-Salanga Prize Winner Announced~ Philippines

Dromkeen National Centre for Picture Book Art Exhibits~ Riddells Creek, Australia

Making Books Sing Presents a One-Woman Play Based on The Storyteller’s Candle/La velita de los cuentos by Lucía Gonzalez~ New York, NY, USA

Doha International Children’s Book Festival~ ongoing until Dec 2, Doha, Qatar

2010 Bologna Illustrators Exhibition~ ongoing until Dec 5, Nanao, Japan

Off the Page: Original Illustrations from NZ Picture Books~ ongoing until Dec 5, Ashburton, New Zealand

Guadalajara Book Fair~ ongoing until Dec 5, Guadalajara, Mexico

2011 Canadian Children’s Book Centre Awards~ submissions accepted until Dec 17, Canada

Scholastic Asian Book Award~ submissions accepted until Dec 31, Singapore

Hedwig Anuar Children’s Book Award 2011~ submissions accepted until Dec 31, Singapore

An Exquisite Vision: The Art of Lisbeth Zwerger~ ongoing until Jan 9, Hannover, Germany

Monsters and Miracles: A Journey through Jewish Picture Books~ ongoing until Jan 23, Amherst, MA, USA

Drawn in Brooklyn Exhibit of Original Picture Book Art by Brooklyn Illustrators~ ongoing until Jan 23, Brooklyn, NY, USA

National Center for Children’s Illustrated Literature Presents From Houdini to Hugo: The Art of Brian Selznick~ ongoing until Jan 29, Abilene, TX, USA

Fins and Feathers: Original Children’s Book Illustrations from The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art~ ongoing until Jan 30, Raleigh, NC, USA

Summer Reading Club: Scare Up a Good Story~ ongoing until Jan 31, Australia

2011 Frances Lincoln Diverse Voices Children’s Book Award

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13. Brave Irene - William Steig, Narration by Meryl Streep

"An extroadinarily eloquent story about love andcourage"
- The New Yorker

The Duchess eagerly awaits the delivery of her ball gown by Irene'smother, Mrs. Bobbin, but the seamstress is sick in bed and can't possiblydeliver the gown in time.
Enter Brave Irene! Through a ferocioussnowstorm and deliberately treacherous winds, Irene sets out to save the dayfor her dear mother (who always smells like fresh-baked bread to Irene).
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14. 2012 Children’s Book Award Winners Announced


This morning I got up at 5 a.m. to see (via webcast) the 2012 winners of the biggest awards in children's publishing--the American Library Association (ALA) awards.  The film industry has their Golden Globes® and their Oscars®, and we have the Caldecott and Newbery Medals, the Coretta Scott King Award, and the Michael J. Printz Award.  Unlike most other book awards, the major children's book awards given by the ALA have no lists of finalists or nominees.  It's a surprise every single year (with plenty of speculation beforehand) and I kind of love the secrecy.  This year's announcement had both the unexpected and the "ah, of course" books on the lists (including some 2011 Best of the Month titles)--you just never know who is going to win what. Congratulations to this year's winning and honored authors and illustrators:


2012 Caldecott Medal for the most distinguished American picture book for children:


2012 Newbery Medal for the most outstanding contribution to children’s literature:



2012 Michael L. Printz Award for excellence in literature written for young adults:  

15. The Breathtaking Collages of Ed Young in “Wabi Sabi”

The collage illustrations of "Wabi Sabi" by Mark Reibstein, illustrated by Ed Young, had to be redone at the last minute.

Collage illustrations

A cat’s journey to find the meaning of her name leads her from her Kyoto home to the pine trees at the foot of Mount Hiei.

And there from a wise Zen monk-ey, our questing cat learns ‘a way of seeing’ that is at the heart of the culture of her land. 

Wabi Sabi, the Japanese and Tao zen concept that is also the cat’s name, ”finds beauty and harmony in what is simple, imperfect, natural, modest and mysterious.”

“It can even be a little dark, but it is also warm and comfortable.”

Wabi Sabi, by Mark Reibstein and renown illustrator Ed Young (published by Little Brown and Company) was named one of The New York Times “Ten Best Illustrated Books” of 2008.

A native of Tientsin, China who was a child in Shanghai during the World War II years, Young  came to the United States in the 1950s and worked as a graphic designer before turning to children’s book illustration. He has illustrated 8o books, several of which he has written.

He has worked in many mediums, from authentic Chinese paper cuts to the soft, bright pastels of Lon Po Po, his 1989 telling of a Chinese “Red Riding Hood” fable, in which three sisters outwit a wolf who comes to their house.  The book published by Viking Penguin imprint Philomel won the Caldecott Medal.

How To Be A Children’s Book Illustrator  recently interviewed Young about his pictures for Wabi Sabi.

Here, Young employed standard and some not-so-standard collage techniques.
“I’ve always used it in doing other mediums, because it’s easier to lay out compositions and make decisions with collage,” he said from his home in Hastings on the Hudson, New York on a Saturday morning in early November. 

(A collage is a work of art created by gluing bits of paper, fabric, scraps, photographs or other materials to a flat surface, often combining the imagery with painting and drawing. Young has cited the collage designs of Henri Matisse as a major influence on his work.)  

“It’s easier to change around, nothing is permanently pasted down,” Young said. “It’s flexible and alive. With other mediums you often get tight too quickly, then you get attached to it and it’s hard to change. Collage was something I used for sketching in the past. Now I use it to finish my work.”

Conversely, he drew pencil thumbnails in his sketchbook to get the idea formation process going for Wabi Sabi.  When he begins to work on an actual collage illustration, Young will place an item such as “a piece of bow” on the paper, and adds from there. For this he keeps several boxes of scraps, ribbons, colored tissue  — arranged in color schemes.

“I work flat until they are arranged in a way that’s satisfactory, then I’ll fix them to the paper with a little dab of Gluestick on the corner so the pieces won’t fly all over the place.

“It’s really play. You don’t get down to make something firm until the [pieces] start to talk to you.  Then you listen. “

Interior illustration of Wabi Sabi the cat is cut paper -- a color Xerox, actually, that Ed Young made of an iron portable stove.

“Illustrating children’s books is like making a movie,” Young said. “You’re making a series of pictures that tell a story. Those pictures are also like words made by you to lay out the moods.

“When you have the pictures together it’s like phrases. The phases have their own spirit and that becomes a poem of some sort — if they hang together right. But it’s very different than making a singular picture.

“In the concept stage, I am placing things down to start telling the story. Then several stages down the line, I introduce the colors. I play around with colors when the composition is right.

“These [colors and shapes] shift around. They have to work with the page. They have to flow from one to the other one so that when you flip the page, you’re either surprised by something, or staying in the mood for the next picture.”

The sequence is something to behold in Wabi Sabi. The viewer does indeed  feel like he’s moving from mood to mood, experiencing all the contrasting sights and emotions, epiphanies and wonderment of this cat on her journey to find who she is.

The story behind the illustrations should be made an epilogue to the book in the second edition.
Young’s first set of illustrations,  which took him two years to complete, mysteriously disappeared after he dropped them off on the front porch of his agent’s house.

(While taking his wife to the hospital, Young had dropped the bundled illustrations in an envelope at the agent’s doorstep, but they never showed up at the N.Y.C. office of his editor Alvina Ling. The agent never saw the package. Police and parcel delivery services were called. Locations were scoured to no avail.)

A few months later, when everyone came to grips with the idea that the art truly was lost, he had to start over with only weeks until his deadline. In the meantime, his wife had just died of cancer.  “I was in crisis mode,” Young said.

He had already cleaned out and re-organized his studio. The brightly
colored paper and tissue scraps and slivers that had been the raw materials for his pictures were gone. He had also tossed all of his visual references — except for some angled, distorted  snapshots that Ling had made of the collages in his studio.

By now, though,  Young knew that in his second go-around he would take a radical approach.
The look of the book would be quite different.

“Wabi Sabi is a term used for celebrating the common things that people overlook and seeing beauty in them,” Young said. “When I did the first round, I used beautiful new things, many done from scratch. And fresh things, although the pictures were beautiful, didn’t really develop the idea of wabi sabi.

“So when I started my second version, I decided to use wabi sabi materials.

“Wabi Sabi does not occur when something is newly made because it hasn’t got to that point where the soul is revealed. New things don’t have stories to tell.

He would have to work very fast. He recruited his 12 year old daughter to help him.
“In the end papers, you see cat foot prints, for example. When they were pouring concrete on my garage driveway, the cat actually walked on it. I wanted the images because that said something about the journey. So I had my daughter photograph that.”

Pine needles that Young’s daughter brought home from summer camp clump and adorn the trees of the forest on the book’s back cover and elsewhere in the pages. (In the original first set of collages, the pines were merely tree stem shapes cut from colored paper.)

The tree bark texture is actually from a large weatherworn outdoor thermometer in his back yard.
(Young is fond of this artifact.)

The autumn leaves on pps 17-18 are … autumn leaves, collected by Young and his daughter.

Other bits of photographed foliage and nature and urban scenes were –in time honored collage tradition — clipped from the covers of Smithsonian and other glossy magazines.

The bamboo leaf shapes are scissored from real corn husks.  A rug mat the cats in the story sleep on is made of lint scraped from the Youngs’ clothes dryer. The speckled cover of a college composition book provides the textured background for our cat heroine in one of Wabi Sabi’s epiphany moments near the conclusion.

The mottled brown pattern of the cat herself throughout the book comes from the rusted surface of a portable cook stove Young owns.

All of these materials  — the leaves, the pine needles, the dryer lint, even the big thermometer and the stove! –were  taken down to a neighborhood copy shop, layed on top of the glass of a color Xerox machine– and photocopied!  (”It probably isn’t something you could do at Staples,” Young offered.) Then he and his daughter merely cut around the myriad shapes and patterns in the color copies — to create the images for the story.  

“I try to take the time to find the soul of a story I illustrate,” Young said. “And, well, Wabi Sabi gave me the theme I needed to make use of that challenge,” Young said. “We were using things people have discarded, things people don’t want to celebrate. And I was reminded that this — and everything — is part of a process.

“With illustration, it’s no different. If I lose this set, I’m not the same person any more — so I’ll do another set.  One round is one telling. The next round is another  telling. I’m just finished for this round.

“The lesson is that nothing is frozen. If the book is ever to be made again, it can be retold by another person in a different way.  And it could be just as good, or better.”

                                                               * * * * *

 The missing set of originals have been alluded to in press releases, a review in School Library Journal  and other sources. I got additional details from Mr. Young and a video he loaned me of a talk he gave this fall at the Hastings on the Hudson Public Library.  The talk was in conjunction with an exhibit of the Wabi Sabi artwork at the library — All the art, Both sets!.  The once-missing original pictures showed up almost a year after they disappeared — in a Lutheran church where Young teaches Tai Chi classes!

“I’ve had Individual pieces of my art that were lost before, and even whole sets of illustrations.
But I never had a set of illustrations that was lost — and then found!”  Young told his appreciative library audience. 

                                                                        * * * *

My warm thanks to Mr. Young,  Tara Koppel with Raab Associates Inc. and Celia Holm, Children’s Librarian at the Spicewood Springs Branch of the Austin Public Library for their help with this article.  Mark Mitchell

Lon Po Po (inside illustration)

Lon Po Po (inside illustration)

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16. ALA Youth Media Awards Announced Monday January 26

The American Library Association (ALA) will provide a free live Webcast of its national announcement of the top books and media for children and young adults on January 26 at 7:45 a.m. MT. You can also twitter the awards, and receive live updates on award winners as they are announced during the ceremony. In addition, the Youth Media Awards has a home on Facebook which features the RSS feed from the Youth Media Awards Twitter site as well as has videos, photos, and information about the awards.

Awards announced on January 26, 2009 include:

  • Alex Awards for the best adult books that appeal to teen audience
  • Coretta Scott King Book Awards honors African American authors and illustrators of outstanding books for children and young adults that demonstrate sensitivity to “the African American experience via literature and illustration.”
  • John Newbery Medal honors the author of the year’s most distinguished contribution to American literature for children.
  • Laura Ingalls Wilder Award honors an author or illustrator whose books have made a substantial and lasting contribution to literature for children.
  • Margaret A. Edwards Award honors an author’s lifetime contribution in writing for young adults as well as a specific body of his or her work.
  • Michael L. Printz Award for excellence in literature written for young adults.
  • Pura Belpré Award recognizes Latino/Latina writers and illustrators whose work best portrays, affirms and celebrates the Latino cultural experience in an outstanding work of literature for children and youth.
  • Randolph Caldecott Medal honors the illustrator of the year’s most distinguished American picture book for children.
  • Robert F. Sibert Medal honors an author, illustrator and/or photographer of the most distinguished informational book published for children.
  • Schneider Family Book Award for books that embody an artistic expression of the disability experience.
  • Theodor Seuss Geisel Award is presented annually to the author(s) and illustrator(s) of the most distinguished book for beginning readers published in English in the United States.
  • William C. Morris Award begins in 2009, honoring a debut book published by a first-time author writing for teens and celebrating impressive new voices in young adult literature.

The press release announcing all of the winners will be posted in the Youth Media Awards Press Kit prior to 10:30 a.m. MT. These award announcements are made as part of the ALA Midwinter Meeting, which brings together more than 10,000 librarians, publishers, authors and guests in Denver, Colorado from January 23 to 28.

0 Comments on ALA Youth Media Awards Announced Monday January 26 as of 1/23/2009 5:05:00 PM
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17. “You’re supposed to kind of wear the book.” David Macaulay

Wear the book.  Be in the square. Make test books. Do it on tracing paper.

Author illustrator David Macaulay puts words to his latest process in this video shot by fellow author-illustrator Thatcher Hurd for the San Francisco Center for the Book’s recent exhibition,’Once Upon a Book.’

English born, an honors architecture  graduate of the Rhode Island School of Design, David Macaulay has delighted the world with his books that look at the inner workings of things — from 16th century caravel sail ships, to grist mills, to  more complex machines like, well, the human body.

He won the Caldecott Medal in 1991  for his book Black and White, of which ALA Booklist said, “It’s a story. It’s a puzzle. It’s a game.”

He’s also received one of those MacArthur Fellowship “genius grants.”

Judging by this video, he also has one of the coolest art studios, anywhere.
I would love to work in there every day.

Thank you, Diandra Mae for sharing the fantastic video clip page from the SFCB site with our Wiggio Children’s Book Illustration Group!

2 Comments on “You’re supposed to kind of wear the book.” David Macaulay, last added: 6/16/2009
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18. Timeless Thursdays: Make Way for Ducklings by Robert McCloskey


I love the picture book, Make Way for Ducklings, written in 1941 by Robert McCloskey because he “noticed the traffic problem of the ducks” in Boston when he returned there to work. He had heard stories about them, and so he wrote and illustrated this timeless picture book.

Why should you still use this book with preschoolers, kindergarteners, and first graders? Because they will love it. First, the illustrations are priceless. My favorite is when the ducks want to cross the street, and they are all quacking at the cars. Which one is your favorite? What about your students? What do they think of Robert McCloskey’s style? What about the brown and white pictures in Make Way for Ducklings?

If you teach or live in Boston, you have to share this book with your students or your children. Do they recognize the places drawn or mentioned in the book? You can even talk about rhyming words and make up silly names with this book. Just look at the names of the ducklings–they all end in -ack. That’s pretty appropriate, don’t you think?

Have fun with Make Way for Ducklings! Show your students this Caldecott Winner, and then a Caldecott Winner from recent years. Ask them to compare and contrast the books.

The thing I love about Timeless Thursdays is that I get to revisit all these old books and realize why I still remember them.

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19. Wild Things

Before the movie fades from awareness, let’s look at some not so exalted celebrations of Maurice Sendak’s strangely theatrical Caldecott Medal winning-story, Where the Wild Things Are, opera for toddlers.

From Wikipedia:  “The original concept for the book featured horses instead of monsters. According to Sendak, his publisher suggested the switch when she discovered that Sendak could not draw horses, but thought that he ‘could at the very least draw ‘a thing.’  He replaced the horses with caricatures of his aunts and uncles, whom he had studied critically in his youth as an escape from their weekly visits to his family’s Brooklyn home.”

Children’s author-illustrators  influence our world.  Like a good ghostbuster I have video proof that I’ll share with you now. Monica Kelley posted this clip on her blog,  My Place For Art recently.

It got me looking at more of them.  So next it’s Jammin’s Crazy Chalk Drawings — the Wild Things’ island rendered on a blackboard.

And Max in his boat:

Here’s the Disney version, which luckily the public never saw.  It has Max in his wolf suit, chasing his dog.  Except he scurries  around his home and room like one of the baby squirrels from Snow White.

This next one one has feet of clay.  I don’t know what the journalism school students were doing working on this project, but I hope they all got A’s.  I think they brilliantly captured the spirit of Max.

Of course the  ballet companies pounced on Sendak’s premise that always seemed more suited to dance and backdrops than to words.

These are but a few of the many versions of Max’s odyssey on YouTube. They range in kookinesss and fun. They demonstrate how an  artist’s idea can inspire a chorus of creative interpretations and loving imitations  — in this case, 47 years after the book first rolled off presses at Harper & Row Publishers.

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We had fun at our group call last night in the children’s book illustration class — even if it was a call without sound. We saw some great work by students.  Learn more about the online course, Make Your Splashes; Make Your Marks at this 0 Comments on Wild Things as of 1/1/1900

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