Sunday, November 22, 2009

Pope Meets Artists in Sistine Chapel

Click here for the whole article:

He added: "Faith takes nothing away from your genius or your art: on the contrary, it exalts them and nourishes them."

...

Benedict, himself an accomplished pianist, said Saturday: "The experience of beauty does not remove us from reality, on the contrary, it leads to a direct encounter with the daily reality of our lives, liberating it from darkness, transfiguring it, making it radiant and beautiful."

He told the artists: "You are the custodians of beauty: thanks to your talent, you have the opportunity to speak to the heart of humanity, to touch individual and collective sensibilities, to call forth dreams and hopes, to broaden the horizons of knowledge and of human engagement."

Saturday, November 21, 2009

A New Drafting Table



I bought this beautiful, solid oak drafting table from my employer; an Architectural / Engineering firm. I got a great deal on it, and Joel and I could certainly use a nice one like this.

The place is a mess because we're getting ready for a move to North Carolina in a month!

Saturday, November 07, 2009

NYT Best Illustrated Children's Books of 2009

Here are the best illustrated children's books of 2009, according to the New York Times:

Every year since 1952, the Book Review has asked a panel of judges to select 10 books from among the several thousand children’s books published that year. The judges this time around were Adam Gopnik, who writes regularly for The New Yorker and is the author of two novels for children, “The King in the Window” and the forthcoming “Steps Across the Water”; Jillian Tamaki, a teacher at the School of Visual Arts and the recipient of a Society of Illustrators gold medal; and Lisa Von Drasek, the children’s librarian of the Bank Street College of Education.

Monday, November 02, 2009

Best of 2009

Here are the best picture books of 2009 according to Publishers Weekly:

The Day-Glo Brothers: The True Story of Bob and Joe Switzer's Bright Ideas and Brand-New Colors
Chris Barton, illus. by Tony Persiani (Charlesbridge)
The unlikely subjects of this fascinating picture book biography exemplify ingenuity and dedication to chasing one's dreams.

The Curious Garden
Peter Brown (Little, Brown)
With humor and some showstopping spreads, Brown offers a green fable about the rebirth of a city, without a hint of preachiness.

Yummy: Eight Favorite Fairy Tales
Lucy Cousins (Candlewick)
Moving beyond the geniality of Maisy, Cousins expertly draws out the primitive emotions at the core of Little Red Riding Hood, The Three Little Pigs, and six other beloved stories.

Dinotrux
Chris Gall (Little, Brown)
Few things are more kid-pleasing than trucks and dinosaurs—put them together in a raucous, prehistoric hybrid and you have picture-book gold.

John Brown: His Fight for Freedom
John Hendrix (Abrams)
Hendrix's powerful, exaggerated imagery in this picture book biography is ideally suited to the life of this controversial American abolitionist.

Stagecoach Sal
Deborah Hopkinson, illus. by Carson Ellis (Disney-Hyperion)
Blithe storytelling and slyly humorous art give this story of an utterly confident, quick-thinking 19th-century heroine plenty of pioneer spirit.

The Lion & the Mouse
Jerry Pinkney (Little, Brown)
Not a single word from Aesop's fable of friendship appears in Pinkney's version, set in the Serengeti. This isn't a problem since the lovingly detailed interplay between the protagonists say it all.

Otis
Loren Long (Philomel)
Long's story of the friendship between a tractor and a young calf exudes a comforting sense of nostalgia and a gentleness of spirit.

Crow Call
Lois Lowry, illus. by Bagram Ibatoulline (Scholastic Press)
Newbery Medalist Lowry's first picture book, drawn from a childhood story about her father's return from war, is poignant and quietly moving, with a timely resonance.

Sweethearts of Rhythm: The Story of the Greatest All-Girl Swing Band in the World
Marilyn Nelson, illus. by Jerry Pinkney (Dial)
Gloriously evocative poetry and paintings create a stirring tribute to an all-female swing band that made spirits soar during an era of war and prejudice.

Duck! Rabbit!
Amy Krouse Rosenthal, illus. by Tom Lichtenheld (Chronicle)
A simple, fixed design and two combative, off-screen voices make this book and its central optical illusion—is that animal a duck or a rabbit?— a delight.

All the World
Liz Garton Scanlon, illus. by Marla Frazee (S&S/Beach Lane)
A subtle undercurrent of interconnectedness and a spare elegance make this picture book more than just a gentle ode to families of all shapes, sizes and kinds (which it assuredly is).

Sunday, November 01, 2009

Birthday Card


Today is my father's 60th birthday. My three siblings and I got him a gift, and I drew this birthday card to go with it.

When we were little kids, we played a game where he would lie on the floor and we would all pile on top of him. We called it "Dead Dog and Flies."

Happy birthday, Pa.