Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Clever bird

After two great school visits in Saratoga Springs, N.Y., last week (thank you, Caroline Street and St. Clement’s!) I was in Vermont for the weekend with friends, and their dogs. At the end of a long day on Friday, at about 1:00 in the A.M., one of the dogs was escorted out back to take care of things and while doing that he got involved with a skunk who was in the meantime doing some work in the compost pile. Man. I’ve smelled skunk in the distance, but never up close. It’s an entirely different experience.

As it happens, the April issue of Click magazine will be all about animal defense mechanisms. Timely! Beatrice Black Bear investigates how killdeers will fake an injury to lead a predator away from a nest. I was happy with how these two characters came out, each pretty sure he has the drop on the other. Only one of them is right. For the text by John Grandits and the rest of the story, you can look for Click at your local library.

There’s more about Click here and more about John here.

Friday, March 4, 2011

Events I am missing (NY, NJ) and attending (TX!)

I’m sorry to be missing a couple of events with the Book Maker's Dozen this weekend that I nevertheless would like to let you know about: an opening and show (and sale) of original art at powerHouse Books in Brooklyn tonight, Friday, March 4 (details here), and a field trip to Sparkhouse Studios in South Orange, N.J. on Sunday, March 6 (details here).

On the bright side, I’ll be at an arts festival in Killeen, Texas tomorrow, Saturday the 5th. The festival runs from 10 A.M. to 5 P.M. at the Killeen Civic & Conference Center. Details are here. I’ll be signing books and spending the day with a great group of authors and illustrators, including (but not limited to!) Kathi Appelt, Chris Barton, David Davis, Shirley Duke Smith, Clare Dunkle, P.J. Hoover, Keith Graves, Mark Mitchell, Jan Peck, Don Tate, Jessica Lee Anderson, Terry Widener, C.G. Young, Jennifer Ziegler, and others. Read all about all of us, here. I'm looking forward to the day. If you’re in striking range of Central Texas, I hope you’ll come by and see us!

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Portrait of the Artist

The March issue of Click magazine (where I have a regular gig illustrating the comic Beatrice Black Bear, written by John Grandits) is about art — looking at it, and making it. I have a piece in the issue on the process of making picture books. The image here accompanies the text, “Sometimes the pictures don’t work out well, and then I try again.” You see in this drawing that I do not duck hard truths just because I am writing for a young audience.
There’s more about Click here and more about John here.