About a month ago I had the priviledge of going to the Skirball Center. I was there for an SCBWI critique event (which was really fun) but I also got to go on the tour of the Ezra Jack Keats exhibit that the Skirball has this summer. I didn't know before I went, but there is an Ezra Jack Keats Foundation that does a lot of good stuff for kids and classrooms.
This picture of Keats was my favorite because you can see him in his studio with his paintings all around. He illustrated over 80 children's books and authored several of them. If you get a chance to come to L.A. this summer you should definitely check out this exhibit.
I am putting most of these pictures as big as I can since they are amazing up close. This is some of his early work. I really think the technique of incorporating cut lettering and textures is so fun!
It was a great experience and I assure you my dummy books are not like Ezra Jack Keats. But, I have come to realize that all art for kids books doesn't have to be the same. After all, who would want books if they all looked the same. While I love the artwork of
Jerry Pinkney and John Rocco.
There are plenty of artist who have a simplier style such as
Sandra Boynton , Oliver Jeffers , and
Mo Willems .
My style is rather simple and I know I am not the best at illustrating people, but the book I am planning on illustrating myself has food (and I think it is kind of fun to draw food). Well to tell you the truth, it isn't always the food that is fun to drawn, it's the funny dishes that they sit on! Living in a digital age I am working with layers too, but I don't have to cut and paste them onto each other because I will do that digitally. I still do like coloring things by hand (even though it could easily be done digitally). Here is how one of my pages is going... As I bonus I'll let you read the text for this image too!
It's fun to eat a pancake bug, that’s super cute like this.
The reddish wings with choc’late spots are oh so hard to miss.
And then there is the fun leaf plate it sits on : )
If I had only taken that ceramics class in high school I might be able to actually make the plate--but hey, I can't do everything.
Thanks for stopping by and I would love to hear your comments!
Are you a picture book fan? Do you buy picture books where you love it just for the artwork? I'm guilty of that! Although, most great artwork in picture books are so great because there is a great story with it.