Synopses & Reviews
Pat Cummings draws out personal stories and practical advice from thirteen talented and popular artists, including Paul O. Zelinsky, winner of the 1998 Caldecott Medal for "Rapunzel" (Dutton), and Peter Sís, author and illustrator of the Caldecott Honor book "The Starry Messenger" (Farrar Straus). Artists answer questions about how they got their first job, what their studios are like, what they do all day, and where they get their inspiration. Though the artists' answers are as unique and varied as their work, all of these remarkably talented people share a great passion for communicating with the world through illustration. Childhood snapshots or each artist, examples of first illustration attempts, a section on secret drawing techniques, and even an introduction to some special pets help make the third volume of "Talking with Artists" as humorous, engaging, and inspirational as its award-winning companions and a must-have for aspiring artists. Bibliography
Cummings once again addresses kids' curiosity about the people behind the picture books they love. The look of this book is slightly different from the 1992 volume: typefaces have been changed, photos of the artists are now in color, and the jacket colors have been softened. The "My Story" section that introduced each profile in the first book remains a wonderful feature here, giving artists an opportunity to tell about themselves in a vivid, personal way; the general questions posed are the same as those in volume one; and there's still a fascinating glimpse of the artists' work as children. There are also some great, new features. Instead of a glossary of art terms, this book includes a simple, technical tip from each artist and a photo of the artist's workspace. Cummings' selection of artists is especially good this time, demonstrating a great diversity in artistic style and choice of media. Kevin Henkes, Floyd Cooper, Denise Fleming, and Vera B. Williams are among the 13 included. A special treat for budding artists and wonderful for teachers.
A special treat for budding artists and wonderful for teachers.
Although similar in format and organization, the books in this remarkable series are not simply carbon copies of one another. The introductions alone, succinct and provocative, demonstrate the ways in which the compiler gives added dimension to her project: Volume One presented the idea of illustration as a profession; Volume Two touted the value both of practicing old techniques and trying new ones; Volume Three introduces the concept of illustration as a means of communication. Yet, like any solid series entry, the familiarity of design and content lives up to expectations; it is satisfying and it is good. There are no surprises as to quality; rather, curiosity is piqued by the seemingly infinite variety of possible responses to the same questions. Paul Zelinsky enlivens his autobiography with sly humor, noting "I was born quite young, at about age zero." Peter Catalanotto, like most of the thirteen artists profiled, demonstrated his talent early in life. However, he envisioned that becoming an artist "meant I would move to New York City, spend my entire life drawing and painting, slowly starve to death, and, after I was dead, people would start buying my paintings." Several of the subjects have roots in other cultures: RaLl Col?n, Puerto Rico; Keiko Narahashi, Japan; Peter S?s, Czechoslovakia. Despite differences in background, they have much in common with the other distinguished and distinctive personalities who are included: Lisa Desimini, Jane Dyer, Kevin Hawkes, G. Brian Karas, Betsy and Ted Lewin, Elise Primavera, and Anna Rich. All are passionate, hardworking, anxious to encourage others, and willing to share some secret techniques in an engaging appendix. Informative, enjoyable, and inspirational.
'A special treat for budding artists and wonderful for teachers.'
About the Author
Pat Cummings is a highly regarded artist and winner of the Coretta Scott King Award for Illustration for her pictures in My Mama Needs Me by Mildred Pitts Walter, and Storm in the Night by Mary Stolz. Ms. Cummings lives in Brooklyn, New York.
Table of Contents
Peter Catalanotto -- Raul Colon -- Lisa Desimini -- Jane Dyer -- Kevin Hawkes -- G. Brian Karas -- Betsy Lewin -- Ted Lewin -- Keiko Narahashi -- Elise Primavera -- Anna Rich -- Peter Sis -- Paul O. Zelinsky -- Secret techniques -- Books by the artists.