Monday, April 25, 2016
Monday, April 11, 2016
Recently I had one of the most humbling and inspiring experiences I've been afforded thus far as a professional illustrator. Last month a book I illustrated for Kids Can Press, School Days Around the World (written by Margriet Ruurs) was nominated for an award at the Rainforest of Reading Festival in St. Lucia. As a result I was invited by OneWorld Schoolhouse Foundation to travel to St. Lucia and participate in the festival.
The Rainforest of Reading Festival was started by OneWorld in an effort to 1) create libraries in schools where they are otherwise nonexistent and 2) to eradicate illiteracy in the Caribbean. Over the course of a week myself and the 4 other author/illustrators participated in 2 festivals (one in the north in the capital city of Castries and a second in the southern part of the island in Vieux Fort). At each festival we met and hosted a day long event for over 7,000 students in grades 3-5.
The experience was inspiring and overwhelming. The children were ecstatic to receive a book, or activity, or honestly anything they could take home (huge thanks to Nat Geo Kids Magazine who donated some copies of their February issue for the kids). For those kids, reading the books and the chance to participate in the festival was an experience they would otherwise never have.
We heard from a waitress at our hotel that her daughter's school could not afford to send all of their students so they randomly picked half who received the chance to go. There is little opportunity or motivation for these kids to go on to college, or to travel outside of island, or pursue careers. The fact the OneWorld Schoolhouse and it's founders Sonya White and Richard Clewes are creating an opportunity for these kids to imagine a life and a world beyond what they know is amazing. And it was amazing to be a very small part of it.
Thursday, March 10, 2016
Recently I've been playing around with a new technique (or I guess revisiting an old one). I used to do a lot of silhouette work, but I wandered away from it as I switch over to digital collage. It's been really refreshing to go back to it and then take it a step further digitally. Here are some examples...more to come.
Friday, February 26, 2016
Monday, February 8, 2016
This first full winter in Colorado has been a snowy, and busy one as I've been building a new picture book portfolio for the Society of Children's Books Writers & Illustrators Winter Conference coming up this weekend. Check out some of my new work here...
or on my website.
In December I had the pleasure of teaching a week long picture book illustration workshop with the first graders
at Inman Elementary School. Gigi Dambrosio, the art teacher at Inman invited me to visit with a grant from
Tuesday, January 19, 2016
Tuesday, January 5, 2016
Hello 2016! Whew, where did 2015 go? This past year was a busy one
which means (as usual) I'm behind on posting news. Where Wild Microbes Grow,
my second interactive eBook with the National Science Foundation was published
in October and is one of the many projects that kept me busy last year.
This book was written by children's author and educator Kevin Kurtz and
produced with a grant from CDEBI. Where Wild Microbes Grow introduces kids
to the cutting edge science that is discovering amazing lifeforms under the
seafloor. The book can be downloaded as both a PDF and an interactive Apple iBook.
Instructions to download it can be found
on the JOIDES Resolution website.