Wednesday, January 25, 2012
I enjoy school visits because they put me in touch with my audience. Now that my own children are grown, it is good for me to meet kids, to hear how they talk, find out what interests them, and get a sense of how they are using books like mine. In my presentation, I try to show them that what I do when I write my books is exactly what they do when they are writing a story or report in school. Just like they do, I start with an idea, then I do research, and then I write, and rewrite, and rewrite, the story. Recently, at a school visit, one boy asked me what was my favorite part about writing. My answer was, when I’m done! Writing is hard work. A lot of people think that because I’m a professional writer that writing is easy, I do it really fast, and it comes out perfect the first time. I wish it did. Writing isn’t easy, I don’t do it fast, and it never comes out perfect the first time. But when I’m finally done, and every word is just right, it is a terrific feeling. Then I know the story is ready to go to my publisher, and hopefully, to be made into a book.
When I visit schools, the kids are always enthusiastic and full of questions at the end of my presentation. My favorite question came from a boy who wanted to know if I had the chance to meet one extinct animal in real life, what would it be? I’m still considering the answer. I’ve written about quite a few extinct animals–dinosaurs, pterosaurs, mammoths, giant sharks, and more, but I’m not sure I’d really like to see a real one up close. Perhaps a small, feathered dinosaur might be fun.
For information about my school visit programs and how to book a visit to your school, go to my website at http://www.carolinearnoldbooks.com/schoolvisits.htm .
Wednesday, January 18, 2012
|On left, original cut paper illustrations for Who Has More? and Who Is Bigger?|
|Blue Dot Cafe and Coffee Bar, Alameda, California|
Wednesday, January 11, 2012
I chose the cut-paper collage technique for my Picture Window Book animal series because the books are intended for children in the primary grades. The bright colors and large scale of the illustrations make them ideal for beginning readers or for reading aloud. The pages are big enough that children in the back of the room can see the pictures when a teacher or librarian is reading the book aloud. Facts at the beginning and end of the book and in sidebars provides addition information beyond the main story.
To make fine art prints from my illustrations I use a printing process called giclee, a French word meaning "sprayed". Giclee prints are created from the original artwork by making very high resolution scans and then printing them with a professional quality printer onto fine art paper with archival inks. The technique allows for an extremely high level of detail and a print that is very close to the original art. Even though the paper of the print is flat, it reflects the three-dimensional quality of the layered paper of the original art.
You can see and purchase my prints at my online gallery at www.etsy.com/shop/CarolineArnoldArt . All prints are limited editions and are signed and numbered.
Wednesday, January 4, 2012
|My drawing following David's guidelines|
David then showed examples from his many books, showing how he had used this method for his own illustrations. It was a delight to meet David and gain some insight into his own creative process and to see him teach art to children.
David Diaz has illustrated more than forty books for children. He won the Caldecott Medal for his illustrations in Smoky Night by Eve Bunting. With author Amy Novesky he will be receiving the 2011 FOCAL Award for their book Me, Frida. FOCAL is the Friends support group of the Los Angeles Public Library. The award luncheon will be held January 28, 2012. Go to the FOCAL site for more information.