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Artist to Artist: 23 Major Illustrators Talk to Children About Their Art Hardcover – September 25, 2007


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Product Details

  • Age Range: 1 and up
  • Hardcover: 114 pages
  • Publisher: Philomel; 1ST edition (September 25, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0399246002
  • ISBN-13: 978-0399246005
  • Product Dimensions: 11.2 x 9.2 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (29 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #196,969 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

The title says it all in this anthology of inspirational letters written by 23 contemporary children’s-book illustrators to future artists. A multicultural group with amazingly diverse artistic styles, the featured illustrators are some of the best-known and celebrated in the genre, including Mitsumasa Anno, Quentin Blake, Nancy Ekholm Burkert, Eric Carle, Tomie de Paola, Steve Kellogg, Leo Lionni, Petra Mathers, Barry Moser, Jerry Pinkney, Alice Provensen, Maurice Sendak, Chris Van Allsburg, Genady Spirin, Rosemary Wells and Paul O. Zelinksy. Their diversity shines in the text of their letters, in which they share childhood stories, sources of inspiration, views on art, details of how they work and advice on becoming an artist. Opposite each illustrator’s letter, a nifty fold-out page presents a montage of “images, art, works-in-progress, photographs of studios and work spaces as well as each artist’s wonderful self-portrait.” Robert Sabuda and Matthew Reinhart’s collaborative self-portrait appropriately resides in one of their pop-ups. Fun to read and view, this anthology is a treasure trove of creative insight and inspiration. Perfect for libraries, art teachers, budding artists and fans of children’s-book illustration. —Kirkus, starred review

This anthology celebrates and elucidates contemporary picture-book art, particularly that which has been exhibited at the Eric Carle Museum. An introduction (and entry) is penned by Carle himself; an afterword from the museum director highlights the institution’s mission of nurturing young artists. Ashley Bryan, Quentin Blake, Leo Lionni, Alice Provensen, and Gennady Spirin are among the contributors, whose comments are formatted as signed letters, illustrated with childhood photographs. The missives speak of early stirrings of creativity, struggles with school, the importance of mentors, the joy of living a passion. Each artist includes glorious self-portraits and a gatefold page that reveals a marvelous array of sketches, color mixes, and studio scenes. All readers will find something that piques curiosity or provides insight: a page from Tomie dePaola’s first picture book (1965); Jerry Pinkney’s cowboy model and horse substitute; Paul Zelinsky’s sequential panels depicting the Renaissance-inspired technique used for Rapunzel and his portrait. While there is some overlap with Pat Cummings’s “Talking with Artists” series (S & S), there are no framing questions, so the illustrators ruminate freely. Sendak writes about finding “a space in the text so that the pictures can do the work.” Sabuda (whose portrait is a pop-up) envisions a “dance across the page.” Brief biographies and bibliographies conclude the title. A selective work, by nature, results in omissions, and there are some surprising absences. Yet, the end result is a gorgeous, browsable gallery of international treasures, with a behind-the-scenes tour led by the generous and gifted creators themselves. —School Library Journal

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5 stars
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This a wonderful book for inspiring budding young artists.
Jane Henry
I am a special education teacher who reads this book to students for lessons on persistance, practice and finding mentors.
Cassandra L Scott
I also enjoyed looking at the art they created when they were young.
Sylvia Gutierrez

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

22 of 22 people found the following review helpful By Judy K. Polhemus TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on August 25, 2009
Format: Hardcover
Sometimes a really creative artist has vision beyond himself and philantropic urges to propel him. "Artist to Artist: 23 Major Illustrators Talk to Children About Their Art" is just one product of the merger of these three qualities in Eric Carle, children's book writer and illustrator.

But wait, there's more. He and his wife developed and built a museum called the Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art in Boston. Here the art of the picture book from around the world is celebrated. From the website comes this statement about fulfillment of the mission--"...by collecting, presenting and celebrating the art of the picture book from around the world and by providing interactive experiences and programs that are engaging and educational." One area Carle most values in the museum is the art studio where visitors (activity geared toward children) can actually create a "masterpiece." If you adore picture book illustrations (as I do), then visit the website for its treasures.

A second enterprise that sprang from the concept of "Artist to Artist" is the degree program with Simmons College, also in Boston. A student could earn a master's degree in Children's Literature or a joint art/literature/writing degree. For teachers and other professionals, an every-other-summer program focuses on picture book art. Visit the website for more information.

The proceeds from this book go directly to the museum. Even if there were not a museum, this book alone is a treasure in itself! Because Carle's desire--with talent behind it--to create art began in childhood, he conceived the idea of an anthology of picture book art dedicated to children who also discover the talent and desire to create art. He cites his mentors and tells children that they can think of this book as their mentors.
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Jill on January 7, 2008
Format: Hardcover
I purchased this book for my 18 year old daughter, who is off to college next year to major in art. Her ambition is to be an illustrator, so I thought it would be inspirational for her. She loves that it features the illustrators of many of her favorite books from when she was small. A great book for anyone who enjoys illustration and picture books.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Sylvia Gutierrez on October 11, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I have to confess I bought this book for my 4 yr. old daughter and ended up keeping it for myself! It's still in the family so I think it's okay--besides I think she's a bit young for it! I bought it because I thought it would be inspirational for my young daughter and as I started reading through it I found it inspiring myself. I love the way the artist's talk about their experiences with art.I also enjoyed looking at the art they created when they were young. Many of the artists also give bits of inspiring words for the young artists to think about. I think this book would be a wonderful gift for a young inspiring artist or anyone who enjoys art!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Whitebird on January 6, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book is beautiful in every way. The selection of featured illustrators includes Mitsumisa Anno, Nancy Elkholm Burkert, Eric Carle, Tomie dePaola, Leo Lionni, Barry Moser, Jerry Pinkney, Alice Provensen, Maurice Senkak, Gennady Spirin, Chris Van Allsburg and many others. The text(written by the artists) is fascinating and easily readable for older children and adults. Foldout pages show examples of each artist's early work, their studios and materials, finished work and a self-portrait. The color quality of the reproductions is outstanding and Robert Sabuda's page features a real Pop-up! If you love book illustration I highly recommend this book. I found it to be illuminating and inspiring!
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By andrew ffrench on September 5, 2008
Format: Hardcover
i thought this book was going to be good, but i didn't know it would be this good. each well-known childrens' book writer/illustrator writes about their lives, influences and inspirations.

included are ealry photos, first drawings and a full page self-portrait.

so thoughtfully put together. a beautiful book to browse through and inspire you and your children to pick up a tool and draw, paint and create.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Maria L on August 13, 2008
Format: Hardcover
I love this book. I had gotten it with my children in mind but being an artist myself, found great joy in reading it.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Eileen M. Carlson on July 1, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Artist to Artist is a book conceived by Eric Carle and written by twenty three major children's book illustrators to children interested in picture book art, Each artist has written a personal letter describing their feelings about art and literature with bits of their biographies and samples of their artwork at different ages and stages in their lives. The book provides encouragement for young artists and enlightenment for anyone interested in the art of creating picture books for children. The book provides personal stories and proves, in the words of St. Thomas Aquinas, "an artist is not a special kind of person, but every person is a special kind of artist."
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Jane Henry on January 11, 2008
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This a wonderful book for inspiring budding young artists. Wonderfully illustrated with examples from all the artists (including fold-outs). A great way to learn about their lives and work.
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