Thursday, September 17, 2015

Day 231: Drawing Bone with Jeff Smith

Jeff Smith (born February 27, 1960) is an American cartoonist, best known as the creator of the self-published comic book series BONE. Smith solidified the 1990′s Self-Publishing Movement when he joined other self-publishers and launched a new era of independent comics publishing, a movement that captured nearly 20% of the growing comics book market. In 1993, Smith breathed new life into the Graphic Novel format with The Complete BONE Adventures Volume One: Out From Boneville, which sold an unprecedented 50,000 copies in its first year. BONE won numerous American awards including 10 Eisner Awards and 11 Harveys, as well as European awards from Italy, Germany, and the French Alph Art. In 2005, BONE was chosen to launch the first graphic novel series for children from a major publishing house, Graphix, an imprint of Scholastic Books. There have been exhibitions of his work, and in 2009 Smith was the subject of an Emmy Award winning documentary called The Cartoonist: Jeff Smith, BONE, and the Changing Face of Comics. Later works include critically acclaimed SHAZAM: The Monster Society of Evil, and Little Mouse Gets Ready, a comic for emerging readers that received a Geisel Honor in 2009. In 2013, Smith guest edited The Best American Comics anthology, and released his second major work, RASL, a dark, hard-boiled sci-fi story that focuses on an art thief who hops through dimensional barriers, hiding out on various parallel worlds.

Visit Bone's website!

Monday, September 14, 2015

Day 227: Drawing Super Diaper Baby with Dav Pilkey

Dav Pilkey has written and illustrated numerous popular, award-winning books for children, including the Captain Underpants and Dumb Bunnies series; DOG BREATH, winner of the California Young Reader Medal; and THE PAPERBOY, a Caldecott Honor Book. He lives with his wife in the Pacific Northwest. In 1996, Dav moved to Seattle, Washington. He then took a ferry from Seattle to Bainbridge Island, WA where he has lived since 1999. He divides his time between Bainbridge Island, WA and Minami Izu, Japan.

Visit Dav's website!

Day 226: Drawing Trixie and Knuffle Bunny with Mo Willems

Mo Willems’ works in children’s books, animation, television, theater, and bubble gum card painting have garnered him 3 Caldecott Honors, 2 Geisel Medals, 6 Emmy Awards, 5 Geisel Honors, a Helen Hayes nomination, and multiple bubble gum cards. 

Remember to visit Mo's website!

Saturday, September 12, 2015

Day 225: Drawing Amelia Bedelia with Herman Parish and Lynne Avril

About Herman Parish:

Herman Parish was in the fourth grade when his aunt, Peggy Parish, wrote the first book about Amelia Bedelia. The lovable, literal-minded housekeeper has been a member of his family ever since. Peggy Parish died in 1988. She would be proud and delighted to know that her nephew is carrying on—for a new generation of readers—the tradition she began years ago. Herman has added sixteen books about the grown-up Amelia Bedelia and five picture books about Amelia Bedelia as a young girl. He has also written four Level-1 I Can Read books about the young Amelia Bedelia, as well as several chapter books in the newly launched series.

About Lynne Avril:

In 2009, Greenwillow Books published Herman Parish's first Amelia Bedelia picture book, Amelia Bedelia's First Day of School, which introduced readers to Amelia Bedelia as a child. Lynne Avril, the illustrator of more than fifty books for children, was chosen to transform the familiar, beloved grown-up Amelia Bedelia into a young girl. "I've loved Amelia Bedelia for a very long time," she says, “and I read the Amelia Bedelia books to my own children. What fun it was to accompany my granddaughter to her first day of school and draw on that experience for the pictures in Amelia Bedelia's First Day of School!" Lynne Avril is the illustrator of all the books about young Amelia Bedelia, and she lives in Phoenix, Arizona.

Friday, September 11, 2015

Day 224: Drawing Chu with Neil Gaiman and Adam Rex

About Neil Gaiman:

Neil Gaiman was born in Hampshire, UK, and now lives in the United States near Minneapolis. As a child he discovered his love of books, reading, and stories, devouring the works of C.S. Lewis, J.R.R. Tolkien, James Branch Cabell, Edgar Allan Poe, Michael Moorcock, Ursula K. LeGuin, Gene Wolfe, and G.K. Chesterton. A self-described "feral child who was raised in libraries," Gaiman credits librarians with fostering a life-long love of reading: "I wouldn't be who I am without libraries. I was the sort of kid who devoured books, and my happiest times as a boy were when I persuaded my parents to drop me off in the local library on their way to work, and I spent the day there. I discovered that librarians actually want to help you: they taught me about interlibrary loans."

Gaiman began his writing career in England as a journalist. His first book was a Duran Duran biography that took him three months to write, and his second was a biography of Douglas Adams, Don't Panic: The Official Hitch Hiker's Guide to the Galaxy Companion. Gaiman describes his early writing: "I was very, very good at taking a voice that already existed and parodying or pastiching it." Violent Cases was the first of many collaborations with artist Dave McKean. This early graphic novel led to their series Black Orchid, published by DC Comics.

The groundbreaking series Sandman followed, collecting a large number of US awards in its 75 issue run, including nine Will Eisner Comic Industry Awards and three Harvey Awards. In 1991, Sandman became the first comic ever to receive a literary award, the 1991 World Fantasy Award for Best Short Story.

Neil Gaiman is credited with being one of the creators of modern comics, as well as an author whose work crosses genres and reaches audiences of all ages. He is listed in the Dictionary of Literary Biography as one of the top ten living post-modern writers and is a prolific creator of works of prose, poetry, film, journalism, comics, song lyrics, and drama.

Gaiman has achieved cult status and attracted increased media attention, with recent profiles in The New Yorker magazine and by CBS News Sunday Morning.

Audiences for science fiction and fantasy form a substantial part of Gaiman's fan base, and he has continuously used social media to communicate with readers. In 2001, Gaiman became one of the first writers to establish a blog, which now has over a million regular readers.

In 2008, Gaiman joined Twitter as @neilhimself and now has over 1.5 million followers and counting on the micro-blogging site. He won the Twitter category in the inaugural Author Blog Awards, and his adult novel American Gods was the first selection for the One Book, One Twitter (1b1t) book club.

Neil Gaiman writes books for readers of all ages, including the following collections and picture books for young readers: M is for Magic (2007); Interworld (2007), co-authored with Michael Reaves; The Day I Swapped My Dad for Two Goldfish (1997); The Wolves in the Walls (2003); the Greenaway-shortlisted Crazy Hair (2009), illustrated by Dave McKean; The Dangerous Alphabet (2008), illustrated by Gris Grimly; Blueberry Girl (2009); and Instructions (2010), illustrated by Charles Vess.

Gaiman's books are genre works that refuse to remain true to their genres. Gothic horror was out of fashion in the early 1990s when Gaiman started work on Coraline (2002). Originally considered too frightening for children, Coraline went on to win the British Science Fiction Award, the Hugo, the Nebula, the Bram Stoker, and the American Elizabeth Burr/Worzalla award. Odd and the Frost Giants, originally written for 2009's World Book Day, has gone on to receive worldwide critical acclaim.

The Wolves in the Walls was made into an opera by the Scottish National Theatre in 2006, and Coraline was adapted as a musical by Stephin Merritt in 2009.

Gaiman is the New York Times bestselling author of the novels Neverwhere (1995), Stardust (1999), the Hugo and Nebula Award-winning American Gods (2001), Anansi Boys (2005), and Good Omens (with Terry Pratchett, 1990), as well as the short story collections Smoke and Mirrors (1998) and Fragile Things (2006).

His first collection of short fiction, Smoke and Mirrors: Short Fictions and Illusions, was nominated for the UK's MacMillan Silver Pen Awards as the best short story collection of the year. Most recently, Gaiman was both a contributor to and co-editor with Al Sarrantonio of Stories (2010), and his own story in the volume, The Truth Is A Cave In The Black Mountains, has been nominated for a number of awards.

American Gods has been released in an expanded tenth anniversary edition, and there is an HBO series in the works.

Gaiman wrote the screenplay for the original BBC TV series of Neverwhere (1996); Dave McKean's first feature film, Mirrormask (2005), for the Jim Henson Company; and cowrote the script to Robert Zemeckis's Beowulf. He produced Stardust, Matthew Vaughn's film based on Gaiman's book by the same name.

He has written and directed two films: A Short Film About John Bolton (2002) and Sky Television's Statuesque (2009) starring Bill Nighy and Amanda Palmer.

An animated feature film based on Gaiman's Coraline, directed by Henry Selick and released in early 2009, secured a BAFTA for Best Animated Film and was nominated for an Oscar in the same category.

Gaiman's 2011 episode of Doctor Who, "The Doctor's Wife," caused the Times to describe him as "a hero."

First published in the UK at the end of 2008, The Graveyard Book has won the UK's Booktrust Prize for Teenage Fiction and the Newbery Medal, the highest honor given in US children's literature, as well as the Locus Young Adult Award and the Hugo Best Novel Prize. The awarding of the 2010 UK CILIP Carnegie Medal makes Gaiman the first author ever to win both the Newbery Medal and the Carnegie Medal with the same book. The Graveyard Book, with its illustrations by Chris Riddell, was also shortlisted for the CILIP Kate Greenaway Medal for illustration -- the first time a book has made both Medal shortlists in 30 years.

"Twenty-three years ago, we lived in a little Sussex town in a tall house across the lane from a graveyard. We didn't have a garden, and our 18-month-old son loved riding a tricycle. If he tried riding in the house he would have died because there were stairs everywhere, so every day I would take him down our precipitous stairs, and he would ride his little tricycle round and round the gravestones. As I watched him happily toddling I would think about how incredibly at home he looked. I thought that I could do something like The Jungle Book with that same equation of boy, orphaned, growing up somewhere else, but I could do it in a graveyard. I had that idea when I was 24 years old. I sat down and tried writing it and thought, "This is a really good idea, and this isn't very good writing. I'm not good enough for this yet, and I will put it off until I'm better."

The film adaptation of The Graveyard Book is in production.

About Adam Rex:

Adam Rex grew up in Phoenix, Arizona, the middle of three children. He was neither the smart one (older brother) or the cute one (younger sister), but he was the one who could draw. He took a lot of art classes as a kid, trying to learn to draw better, and started painting when he was 11. Later he got a BFA from the University of Arizona, and met his physicist wife Marie (who is both the smart and cute one).
Adam and Marie live in Tucson, where Adam draws, paints, writes, spends too much time on the internet, and listens to public radio. Adam is nearsighted, bad at all sports, learning to play the theremin, and usually in need of a shave. He can carry a tune, if you don't mind the tune getting dropped and stepped on occasionally. He never remembers anyone's name until he's heard it at least three times. He likes animals, spacemen, Mexican food, Ethiopian food, monsters, puppets, comic books, 19th century art, skeletons, bugs, and robots.
His first picture book, THE DIRTY COWBOY by Amy Timberlake, was published by FSG in 2003. His picture book FRANKENSTEIN MAKES A SANDWICH, a collection of stories about monsters and their problems, was a New York Times Bestseller. 2007 saw the release of his first novel, THE TRUE MEANING OF SMEKDAY, which was adapted into the DreamWorks film HOME in 2014. He has illustrated the work of many authors, including Jon Scieszka, Mac Barnett, Neil Gaiman, Jeff Kinney, David Lubar, Kate DiCamillo, Eoin Colfer, Christopher Paul Curtis, and Paul Fieg.
Garlic and crosses are useless against Adam. Sunlight has been shown to be at least moderately effective. A silver bullet does the trick. Pretty much any bullet, really.

Don't forget to visit Neil and Adam's websites!

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Day 223: Drawing Cheetah with Bob Shea

Bob Shea has written and illustrated over a dozen picture books including the popular Dinosaur vs. Bedtime and the cult favorite Big Plans illustrated by Lane Smith.

Little Brown, Hyperion, HarperCollins, Random House, Simon and Schuster and Dial have all published his work. They are all still in business.

Bob got his start at Comedy Central where he make up stuff and they went along with it. It was great.

His characters and animations have appeared on Nick Jr, Playhouse Disney and PBS Kids.

Bob spends his days writing, drawing and having “conversations” with NPR.

He’s lucky.

Remember to visit Bob's website!

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Day 222: Drawing a Lamb with Steve Smallman and Joelle Dreidemy

About Steve:

Steve Smallman lives in Staffordshire with his wife, two dogs and two cats. He has four children and a grandchild. Steve has been illustrating children’s books for almost 30 years and writing his own stories for slightly less. He also teaches illustration workshops in schools, including mural-painting. Steve is the author of Smelly Peter the Great Pea Eater (Winner of the Sheffield Children's Book Award 2009) and The Lamb Who Came for Dinner (Shortlisted for the Red House Children's Book Award and read by Meatloaf on CITV's Bookaboo). When he’s not working, Steve enjoys films, television, gardening and walking in the countryside.

Steve Smallman on Steve Smallman:

I started working as an illustrator when I was in my final year at Art College and now, over 28 years later I still haven't got a proper job! I've illustrated literally hundreds of books, predominantly in educational publishing. A few years ago I was main illustrator for Longman's 'Story Street' reading scheme, illustrating 79 titles and writing 5.

I've worked in children's television, specifically in character development and most notably in the 'Raggy Doll' series in the mid to late 1980's. I have also done a certain amount of licensed work, illustrating characters such as Postman Pat, Bill and Ben and Sesame Street.

I've been described as an 'Animal Artist', not I hasten to add because I'm wild and hairy but because I love to draw animals and especially like to give them human characteristics. 

I've been writing children's books for about 6 years and have already had several picture books published with more in development.

I've got 4 great children and although they're all adults now, my memories of them growing up inspire and inform my writing.

Joelle on Joelle:

I can't remember the first time I started drawing... maybe since I am able to take a pencil in my hand ! I spent my childhood among books from Roald Dahl, Quentin Blake, Tony Ross, Ralph Steadman ....

After my baccalaureat, I studied arts in university in Strasbourg for 4 years, had my Master of Plastic Arts in 2001. 
So I went in Lyon to study illustration, animation and sculpture in the famous Emile Cohl School where I met fantastic and motivating teachers like Yves Got and Jean Claverie. 
I had my diploma in illustration in 2004. I live now in Paris doing illustration for french, english, american and korean publishers and I think it's the best job ever ! 
I also teach illustration in Emile Cohl School.

I am full of energy, so next to illustration which is my very first hobby, I practice karate four times a week, write stories for children, play piano, go to museums, cinema....

One thing is sure, I love my life and I wouldn't change it for nothing !!

Visit Joelle website!