Posts Tagged ‘childrens book illustration’

Chuck Groenink

Published May 26, 2010 by Molly

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We stumbled upon Chuck Groenink after moaning with awe at his submission to Terrible Terrible Yellow eyes (it’s so dreamy!) but became further enchanted upon taking a quick tour of his website, which showcases a roster of illustrations and serials.

For a biographical note, Groenink reveals that he grew up “in an overgrown village somewhere among the moors and peat bogs in the north of the Netherlands.” If that doesn’t sound like a fairy-tale recipe for productively unhinged imaginative activity, we don’t know what does! Groenink also lists as his interests old towns, damp forests, creepie crawlies and almonds, which fills out the picture perfectly.

Curious Pages

Published March 5, 2010 by Molly

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Curious Pages is a blog devoted to exhuming old children’s books and and sharing their aesthetic peculiarities with the world. Succinct explanations accompany shiveringly detailed scans for a result that will prompt wistful sighs of nostalgia and explosions of good cheer in about equal doses.

You’ll want to collect some supplies around you before you start scrolling through the site, because you’ll be scrolling for a while. Hot cocoa, a glass of water, and a nourishing snack of some kind should do it. We’re posting a few samples above, but the full effect of the collection is best experienced by diving right in.

Bonus: Sendak mention here.

Stitches

Published March 2, 2010 by Molly

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Graphic novel and memoir are two genres that, if fused right, can harmonize as beautifully as Brian and Carl Wilson. Marjane Satrapi, Harvey Pekar, Joe Sacco, Phoebe Gloeckner…the list of successes goes on. There’s something about combining the expressiveness of words, images, and narrative that can tell the story of a life like nothing else.

A recent addition to the canon is David Small’s memoir Stitches (W.W. Norton), which tells the story of the author’s youth in images as lucid as they are dreamlike. We begin with the author as a young boy, often sick, living with a distant, unhappy radiologist father and a depressed, pathologically stingy mother. When a possibly-cancerous cyst is discovered on David’s neck, he undergoes an operation leaves him literally unable to speak for nearly a decade.

What follows is a dark chronicle of the family’s dissolution rendered in images that can only be described as lovely. Lovely? It’s hard to explain how a young man’s notions of invisibility and rage can resonate so deeply when portrayed as Small portrays them, but that’s the mystery of the medium.

The melding of memoir and graphic novel is one of those alchemical developments which we can point to, gratefully, as a recent beacon of hope for the printed word. Paging through Stitches, a reader is certain that there is no other way that Small’s story might have been told.