Art as Illustration

Last week the Deseret News ran an article about a exhibition at the Springville Museum of Art. Unbound: Original Picture Book Art by Utah Illustrators. There are 27 illustrators showcased. I'll bet you didn't know we had so many in Utah! They do a special readings on Saturday mornings with the illustrators for children. You can check the times here. I thought (since I'm an illustrator) I would showcase that exhibit today, for those of you who might be interested.

The artwork they showed was for 4 different artists, but I will try and show a few more. The first one is Guy Francis.

Guy Francis has done several children's books, and they look hilarious. His work is really humorous and imaginative. His characters show lots of life, and I love the colors he uses. The book in the picture is the illustration he did for Mrs. McBloom, Clean Up Your Classroom! Great stuff. He has also illustrated a couple of games that look really fun. Go check out his site.

The next one they featured was Greg Newbold. His work is many and varied as well. The book he illustrated was The Barnyard Night Before Christmas.
Another one he did that you might recognize is Winter Lullaby. His work is rich in color and strong in line. He is another talented artist that is sought after by the large publishing houses back east.

Mark Buehner is another illustrator that is very talented.
In one of the interviews he did, he said that the most disappointing thing about doing illustrations is how they come out in the books -- sometimes it's not what you pictured, or not the colors you painted. But there's not much you can do about it -- not all of them turn out bad, most of them are wonderful, as you can see by the print of Harry Potter's Balloon Farm. He felt they came out too strong, but I see that as a focal point of his work.

Sherry Meidell's work is a whole different world. Her work is with watercolor, and so the feel is entirely different.
Her work is a little more subtle, a little more flowing in feel, and a gentler feel. I love her work with horses, and it looks like she's done many illustrations. The clip above is from Emma Jo's Song.

Another artist is Fumi Kosaka. She doesn't live in Utah anymore, but she went to BYU and studied both in Idaho and Provo.
Her work is a different feel as well. It's more of a childish feel, more relatible perhaps by a child's point of view. I like her use of color and the simple expressions on the children's faces.

Will Terry
is another artist who uses bright colors and excellent drawings.
His work makes me think of stories like James and the Giant Peach. It's large, colorful and eye catching.

It seems to be an illustrator of childrens books, that your work generally needs to fit those categories. All of the illustrators I've spotlighted so far seem to fit very well within that range. However, a contradiction of sorts is the work of Ben Sowards, illustrator of the popular Christmas Oranges. His work is softer...gentler and emotional. It speaks to the child as well as the adult. He has other books available through Deseret Book as well, and I'm sure you've seen many of them.

Of course...I had to add myself. I didn't illustrate children's books, but I have illustrated a compilation of stories by Claire Bowen called Sorry, the Stork Takes No Returns. She is a great writer, will a humorous way of putting things and I had fun bringing her stories to life.

I hope you've enjoyed this weeks groups of artists. I hope it inspires you to look further into their exhibits and enjoy more of what they have to offer. Springville is a great spot for the arts, and I hope you'll look into seeing the exhibit.

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Return to the Neighborhood.


Cool, Gaynell. Thanks for sharing such fun artwork.
Cathy Witbeck said…
My art critique group is going to the Springville Art Museum this Thursday to look at this display. I can hardly wait. Thanks for the mini-preview.

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