Now that my son is applying for high school architecture and design programs, my lens is focused on all things architecture. I see references everywhere, from Vince Scully's obit in the NY Times, to a new picture book biography about Zaha Hadid, to two picture book biographies of Maya Lin, Legos' architecture building series (including … Continue reading The Shape of the World – Perfect Picture Book Friday
Behold, the Chupacabra!!! What's a chupacabra you may ask? No one really knows what they look like, for they've never been caught. The name literally means "goat sucker." When Ana Aranda, the illustrator for this book, was growing up in Mexico, she and her friends told stories about the chupacabra. How you shouldn't let your … Continue reading The Chupacabra Ate the Candelabra – Perfect Picture Book Friday
STOP THE PRESSES!!! Announcing the first picture book to win both the Caldecott and the Newbery!!!! Well, if the judging were up to me, that is. Seriously, folks. This book gobsmacked me. Dan Santat has created a touching, funny book about overcoming your fears, and in the process transforming your life. "My name is Humpty … Continue reading After the Fall – Perfect Picture Book Friday
In honor of National Poetry Month and Perfect Picture Book Friday, I'm shining the spotlight on a brilliant Caldecott and Coretta Scott King Award Winner from 1997: "They took to the road in Waycross, Georgia Skipped over the tracks in East St. Louis Took the bus from Holly Springs Hitched a ride from Gee's Bend … Continue reading Harlem: A Poem by Walter Dean Myers
This is the United States of America: This was the USA during the presidential campaign: This is the USA today: This is my dream for the USA: To get there, this needs to happen: And then we've got to stop doing this: And start doing this: The END
So you're looking for a couple of books from a brilliant author/illustrator? Ones that will make kids say "ewwww" page after page, all while laughing uproariously? Ones that kids will want to read again and again and again because each little twist is ingenious? Tedd Arnold's will do the trick: For the most part, his … Continue reading Parts and Even More Parts – Perfect Picture Book Friday
My 11-yr-old son has discovered Russ Cox, a wonderful illustrator. You can see his work at Smiling Otis Studio. [Yes, Mike Allegra (HeyLookAWriterFellow), Otis was one of Russ's cats. They're everywhere! And BTW, a mouse snuck into our pantry and tore into the brown sugar, dried beans, and pancake mix. I'm thinking we've got a diabetic … Continue reading Illustrator Influence
A fabulous illustrator, Christian Robinson, recently held our school's "itchy-britches-is-it-summer-yet" children spellbound. If you aren't familiar with Christian's work, you should check out his website and marvel at his range. And if you happened to "Google" anything on this past Martin Luther King Day, you most likely noticed Christian's "Google Doodle," honoring Dr. King. But … Continue reading Josephine Baker Rocks!
My 10-yr-old son, the cat lover vs. Mike Allegra (HeyLookAWriterFellow), the rodent lover Mike posted the "naughty kitten" doodle he drew (reluctantly) for my son, and in return, Mike received a tribute to furry creatures with front teeth that never stop growing. My iPhone photo of a copy of the original turned the … Continue reading Celebrate Dueling Doodlers!
According to my 10-year-old son, the American Revolution can be distilled to four panels (click photo to enlarge): He loved drawing this cartoon and spent a couple of joyful hours completely absorbed in his work. Note that the Loyalist character's voice comes from off the page, showing how the Loyalists either operated under cover, "lost … Continue reading What do David Shannon and My Son Have in Common?