I contributed this owl painting to the Keene State College Children's Literature Festival coming November 1, 2008 in Keene, NH. He's just little - only about 6" x 6" - acrylic. The "frame" is part of the art.
Wednesday, May 21, 2008
Wednesday, May 14, 2008
I was in Atlanta for the International Reading Association Annual Convention last week. It was fantastic! We lived in Atlanta for fourteen years but it was different to be a visitor and stay in the Marquis downtown with no worries about driving in horrible traffic. It is also a different city than when we moved away ten years ago - Atlanta gathers no moss. There is a terrific vital feeling to Atlanta but with a casual freshness. It made me miss living there - but then again I didn't have to drive anywhere. I had dinner downtown at a Mexican restaurant on quatro de Mayo with my friend and crit buddy Jenny Murray who was attending the conference, and dinner with my brother in law Robert Lee on the rooftop of Six Feet Under in westside Howell Mill area near my old studio in Murray Mill. Great food, great view, great company!
The convention was a fantastic experience but I never even took my camera out of my bag - so no visual aids. Highlights For Children commissioned David Harrison to do a delightful poem titled You Come, Too! and me to do the art for a poster that they gave away in their booth. David and I were sent to sign and sign we did - hundreds of them! I also had a chance to buy David's new book bugs; poems about creeping things and get that signed by the author as well. It is silly, whimsical, and lovely in its smallness with lots of white space and pitch perfect line drawings by Rob Shepperson. Although I planned on sneaking off the exhibit floor for some of the sessions upstairs I never did find a chance to get away. I really wanted to drop in on Sara Pennypacker and Marla Frazee's session. And Mark Teague's. And about ten other missed opportunities.
It was also very interesting to see an entire catalog from each of the publishers. I got a better sense of what they are all about by seeing the body of work. And I got a ton of freebies! I love freebies! I got Cartooning, The Ultimate Character Design Book by Chris Hart, signed and doodled in. And I picked up a bunch of free f&g's - my very most favorite and sure to be a huge sucess is Grace For President by Kelly DiPucchio, illustrated by LeUyen Pham. It is a fabulous girl-power story with a splash of civics and is illustrated by one of my all time favorites.
I also had a chance to see the advance copy of the next book in the math series I illustrated for Sylvan Dell Publishing, My Half Day by Doris Fisher and Dani Sneed. I am so delighted with this one! Hurray. I was able to sign in the Sylvan Dell booth as well.