Saturday, December 18, 2010

FELIX revisited

a detail from a dummy page.

i have been working on a project i tentatively call FELIX. finished my entirely redone second version. i'm completely absorbed by my new approach to story telling: the strip form. i have been working on it for the last 3 or 4 years. it suits my personal rhythm and pacing. i can concentrate on what is so important to me: emotions. plus i have a great time working that way.

Friday, December 3, 2010

contract with charlesbridge

happy call from Linda yesterday: Charlesbridge wants to acquire my book, A VERY TINY BABY. I am thrilled. the image is a detail from the dummy. we will have to wait a long time for anything more final.
the story is told in a sort of journal/scrap book/ strip form. it originally stems from my experience as the mother of a very premature baby but surprisingly (to me!) much more from my experience as the 2 year old sister of a very premature brother. all the emotions a young child feels when a new baby comes along are there... with the extra drama of the baby's prematurity.

Friday, October 22, 2010

visit in Hamilton

fantastic visit to Hamilton yesterday. preK to 3rd graders. thank you to all my new friends for the invitation and especially to Melissa and Meredith.
here is the product of our team effort:

we started out with the preK and K classes and they requested a cat playing ball and having forgotten to wear his pants that morning:

on with the the 3rd graders who wanted a dancing Tyrannosaurus Rex, wearing dress, top hat and sneakers:

the 2nd graders requested a dragon reading a book on the ceiling! i almost asked for another suggestion on that one and then decided to stick with my rule: yes to first suggestion. no favoritism:

and the first grade came up with a dinosaur playing video games... i had to add the banana peel. (the inscription however was a request.)

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

working, working.

working hard. just not posting.
reviewing old ideas, redoing dummies, experimenting with drawing styles, discarding some, starting others...
fun, but hard to stay on track. a good talk with Linda always helps.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

talk to literacy volunteers

On Tuesday morning, I gave a talk at the Jewish Federation of Northeastern NY. I was speaking to a roomful of literacy volunteers. It was a wonderful experience. The volunteers are devoted to helping children who experience difficulties in reading. They will spend time in any local elementary school that need their help.
The whole group made me feel so special. When life becomes a bit roomier, I will consider joining them. This is definitely a cause I would embrace wholeheartedly!
My main theme during the talk was that learning to read is insufficient without the enjoyment of reading. I believe children's books can help build a life-long joy in reading.
Thank you to Shelly Shapiro (extreme right on picture) who is a truly dedicated person. Shelly showed me around the heart-braking and extraordinary Holocaust Memorial Center that she is also in charge of.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

fritz update.

This is another try for possible finishes. Just a try. Fritz is ready to knock on doors.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

visit to grafton elementary

My visit at Grafton Elementary was fantastic. Thank you Susan and kids for inviting me. You were all so well prepared. Your welcome was heart-warming and I had a great time. If I were a kid, I would register at your school!

What we created together:

a horse and a jaguar on a skateboard.

and a gorilla and a hedgehog hiking.

What a team we made!

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

still on Fritz!!!

FRITZ is still going through changes. Now on the color samples. And I don't think I'm there yet! It is a challenge but I like it. I can only get better. One can bemoan being pushed... or be thankful for it. I bemoan first, then appreciate when I see the results.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Friday, April 9, 2010

grant application

for the first time ever, i applied for a grant. my submissions for books in strip form seemed a perfect match for the CLC grant guidelines. i felt good sending my package on time with 3 fantastic letters of recommendation: one from Jennifer Armstrong (author), one from Karen Beil (author too) and one from Linda Pratt (my trusty agent).
i did not get the grant. i am sure the CLC chose well among many applicants. they are discerning people. but i am happy i tried and i now have 3 esteem-boosters in my files.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

last visit of the series

today was the last visit of the series of visits in and near Utica. again a good and creative time. after leaving the last group, i realized i forgot to read from my book! can you believe that! nobody seemed to notice. we were all plenty busy with the drawing demos. and that class had a million of interesting questions! which shows good preparation. thank you to the artist in residence.

we had a tiger on a scooter wearing hula skirt and coconut bra. (no kidding!)

and a zebra shopping for ham, eying some potatoes and wearing expensive shoes.

school visits are wonderful but also very draining. it will feel good to concentrate again on a project.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

watson williams

Lovely visit at Watson Williams Elementary in Utica. Again, well prepared students - a big thank you to the faculty- and great creative times for all.

We came up with an elephant in a cowboy hat, playing basketball but being distracted by some forgotten peanuts.

And a monkey on a skate board going a bit too fast and unaware of you-know-what!

Friday, March 5, 2010

visit with 5th graders

Same school as yesterday. But with the 5th grade. Just as well prepared, just as enjoyable, just as creative. And more time per group, which was nice.Thank you to all the teachers I met today, for your dedication. Your students are lucky ones!

Here are the drawing demos we came up with:
A cat lounging by a pool, in a tutu and a leprechaun hat and drinking soda,

a buffalo practicing her salsa steps with a broom,

an elephant juggling with pineapples,

and a bunny named Elvis, dancing disco, wearing a jump suit and converse, complete with carrot, hairspray and combs.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

visit with 6th graders

I am not used to visiting with 6th graders. I was a bit worried. I ended up LOVING it! The students were so much fun: attentive, respectful, enthusiastic and creative. They obviously were surrounded by an excellent team of teachers. Thank you to all my new friends at Clinton Middle School. Near Utica.
We had to deal with tight time constraints but what fun pictures came out!
We started with a giraffe shopping for coats and wearing a bikini.

Then came a loony rabbit playing ice hockey and wearing sombrero, sweater vest and tutu.

Next, an angry shark playing football...

... and finally, a cat doing a back flip, wearing tuxedo and bunny slippers.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

visit to FDR elementary

Reading from MISTER BEAR

The visit at FDR Elementary in Schenectady was a real pleasure. Thank you to Nikki for her enthusiasm and dedication as a "one woman PTO" in a grossly underfunded school. The children were wonderful, with tons of ideas for me to draw.
Thank you to everyone for the warm welcome. It was a treat for me too!

the drawing assigned by the children: an elephant with a hula-hoop and a tiger jumping rope.

Friday, January 22, 2010

getting ready for Schenectady

Decided to donate a reading/drawing visit to an inner city school with no funding in Schenectady. Looking forward to a different experience. Let's just hope I find the place and a few children show up!

Saturday, January 16, 2010


FRITZ needs a better ending. Tough realization. As Pooh would say: "think, think!"