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Viewing: Blog Posts Tagged with: Walter Anderson, Most Recent at Top [Help]
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1. Hester Bass: The Secret World of Walter Anderson

One of the really great things about SCBWI Conferences is getting to know other authors. Katie and I met Hester Bass at our very first SCBWI Conference three years ago. At that conference, Hester relayed (make that, shouted and sang) her Cinderella story of selling her book The Secret World of Walter Anderson to Candlewick Press.

Her book tells the story of the Mississippi artist Walter Anderson, and it is illustrated by the amazing watercolorist E.B. Lewis. The book is billed as describing "the most famous artist you've never heard of"--but for someone like me who has grown up in Mississippi, he's the first famous artist who's work I loved. I mean, really loved, deeply and passionately.

Walter Anderson painted many of his paintings alone on the islands off of the Mississippi gulf coast. He became one with nature and the animals, even acting like the animals at times to understand their movement and perspective. His artistic voice is unique in it's use of vibrating color and line, and he expresses Gulf Coast nature in a way that no one ever has or ever will again. I grew up going to these islands in my dad's boats, so Walter Anderson's work has personal meaning for me--especially after hurricane Katrina completely altered the landscape of the Mississippi Gulf Coast forever.

I love seeing Walter Anderson receiving national acclaim, and especially children being able to see his work on a national level (his work has been shown at the Smithsonian and there are books about his life written for adults--but this is the first time that his
story has been told for an audience of children).

He is the Van Gogh of the southern United States, and I'm thankful for Hester's persistence and belief in her dream to tell his story.

Here are a few picture's of Walter Anderson's work:

The gorgeous book cover painted by E.B.

And, Hester at my daughter's school where she did a fabulous presentation. The picture next to her is the name of the school (Bramlett) spelled out in Walter Anderson's alphabet that he designed.


9 Comments on Hester Bass: The Secret World of Walter Anderson, last added: 10/2/2009
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2. Do You Listen to Book Bites for Kids?

by Suzanne Lieurance

Every week day afternoon at 2:00 CDT, I host Book Bites for Kids, a talk show about children’s books on blogtalkradio. I love talking to the other children’s writers, illustrators, publishers, and editors I interview on the show.


Today it was my great pleasure to interview Hester Bass about her new picture book, The Secret World of Walter Anderson. Generally, authors I interview will have a review copy of their latest book sent to me. And, I have to say, I immediately fell in love with this beautiful picture book the moment I opened it. The detailed, colorful illustrations from Caldecott Honor-winning illustrator E. B. Lewis set the tone for the story that takes readers into the amazing world of artist Walter Anderson, who spent weeks at at time alone on Horn Island, off the Gulf Coast, as he sketched and painted the natural surroundings and animals he found there.

I hope you listen to Book Bites for Kids. If you missed the live interview this afternoon with Hester Bass, simply click on the automatic blogtalkradio player in the right sidebar of this page to listen to the replay of that interview. No doubt, you’ll enjoy hearing about the adventrues of Hester Bass AND Walter Anderson just as much as I did!

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