Friday, December 19, 2014

Let's Illustrate a Book -- I can dream can't I?

LINK:   Inez Ibis Flies Again, the story of a courageous ibis who never gave up

It’s not easy illustrating a children’s book. It’s even harder to get published, especially if you’re both writer and illustrator. That goal has been on my bucket list for years! When I was simply a writer, I had many stories published in leading children’s magazines of the day. The bug to illustrate came later with my book: “Inez Ibis Flies Again; the story of a courageous ibis who never gave up.”

Inez still lives in my neighborhood after eleven years, and she still limps; but she has born several clutches and never seems to lack for a mate. When I see her struggling along as she forages for food, my heart goes out to her. But up in the air she soars with the best of them, free and unhampered by her disability.

Today in my blog, I’m featuring my illustrations and some accomplished idols: names like Harriet Peck Taylor, Syd Hoff, Ben Sowards, Richard Clark and Charley Parker.

Harriet Taylor’s interest in coyote lore began with a young coyote who lived in the foothills near her home. “It used to follow me on hikes with my dogs,” she says, “and once even touched noses with them.”

Most of her books include Native American Lore and nature because “If people can appreciate the beauty of the land, they will perhaps want to protect it.”

Harriet’s Coyote story is based on a Wasco Indian legend about the origin of the constellations.  
Harriet Peck Taylor's Web Site

Syd Hoff wrote many of my children’s favorite books such as “Danny and the Dinosaur.” 
I liked Hoff’s simple drawings and felt his style was more likely to become mine.
Syd Hoff's Web Site

Jane Yolen has also written several humorous dinosaur books that are full of fun like “How do Dinosaurs say Merry Christmas!”  

Yolen has found a unique way to teach children about dinosaurs in a fun way by making them almost human and bringing them into a child's world.  Jane Yolen's Book

And I can’t forget Charley Parker who is a master at creating dinosaur cartoons.
Charley Parker's Web Site

Christmas Oranges was retold by Linda Bethers and illustrated by Ben Sowards. His realistic and tender pictures remind us of the old masters in their detail and magnificence. Based on a true story, the action takes place in an orphanage many years ago.

The next book has its origins in Minnesota and dear to my heart. My husband was born there, and is a full-blooded Norwegian. The expression “Uff da” is Scandinavian for “Good Grief!”

Born in America, my own second generation Swedish grandmother had her own version of uff da when she said: “ooh ha.”  A little Scandinavian history helped me see that what she was really saying (or meaning) was “uff da.”

The illustrations and the humorous tale, written by Cathy Martin and illustrated by Richard Clark, keep us laughing and turning pages.  
Uff Da on Amazon