Monday, August 18, 2008

Illustration in Chapter Books


I recently realized that the two books I just reviewed (and loved) were both illustrated by Drazen Kozjan.  Coincidence?  I think not.  

I know that, although the writing in both books is completely wonderful and enchanting on its own, there is an added magic in the lively pen and ink drawings supplied by Mr. Kozjan.  I am partial to illustrators, being partnered with one myself, and I am drawn (pardon the pun!) to books with marvelous illustrations!

I picked up Judy Moody initially because of Peter H. Reynolds' endearing art and Clementine because of Marla Frazee.  And I remember many books from my childhood through the pictures: The Bad Times of Irma Baumlein with Trina Schart Hyman's almost gothic interpretation of this completely hilarious story (definitely a to-review!), Elizabeth Enright's perfectly illustrated Melendy books in her sparse but warm style, The Alley with Edward Ardizzone's wispy and active vignettes (this lovely painting is his), Beth and Joe Krush's detailed illustrations for Gone Away Lake, the list goes on and on!  In some books, the illustrations are my favorite part; Spiderwick Chronicles illustrated by Tony DiTerlizzi is definitely an example of that.  

Any chapter books where the illustrations particularly captivated you?

9 comments:

Sunny Lea said...

I think Brett Helquist's illustrations are what drew my to The Series of Unfortunate events (I love all his work), and, of course, there is Brian Selznick's incredible work in Hugo Cabret.

As far as illustrators I remember well from my childhood, that would have to be Garth Williams' many works and the Alan Tiegreen work in the Ramona books.

Sarah said...

Several come to mind! N.M. Bodecker's illustrations complemented Edward Eager's fun writing style perfectly. And Pauline Baynes definitely added significantly to C.S. Lewis's Chronicles of Narnia. And the illustrations of John R. Neill in L. Frank Baum's Oz books are some of my favorite works of art. Like I said, several come to mind! All of these books are favorites of mine, just as the illustrators happen to be some of my favorite illustrators. As you said, coincidence? I think not!

Fourstorymistake said...

Sunny- I totally should have mentioned Helquist's work. So great! And I absolutely love William's art. I haven't had a chance to read Hugo Cabret yet- it's on my too read list!

Fourstorymistake said...

Sarah, I almost mentioned Bodecker's illustrations- I think he's great. The Oz illustrations are breathtaking- I would love to frame some of them and put them up in my house! :)

Elissa said...

I love the illustrations from the "wizard of oz books", and from the "spider wick" chronicles as well!
i like the cover art on the patricia wrede "enchanted forest" chronicles as well!

Fourstorymistake said...

Elissa- Peter de Sève is great! I love his stuff too.

Laurie said...

The wonderful illustrations in the Betsy-Tacy books--Lois Lenski first, then Vera Neville in the later books. Lenski's are memorably detailed and filled with good humor.

Fourstorymistake said...

Laurie- I loved the illustrations in the Betsy-Tacy books! Thanks for reminding me about those.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the kind words!

-Brian Demeter