Wednesday, April 27, 2011


Quite possibly the most elegantly illustrated book I own.
I purchase this book 5 years ago in Paris at the Louvre. I walked into a small gift shop filled with books and this one stood out above all others. I just had to have it. Every page I turned made it that much more clear to me how badly I needed this book for my Children book collection. Little did I know at the time I was pregnant with our daughter and in 9 months time begin to share my love for books with her.The only disappointment I have is that I have yet to learn French or have someone translate the book for me so that I can read it to Emma.

Each image in this book is so beautiful and compelling and tells it's own story with every turn of the page.
This glorious book is a wonderful 9 1/2 inches wide and 14 1/2 inches tall and make for a wonderful display in any artistic home.

Friday, April 22, 2011

The Tale of Three Trees

Just in time for Easter, this is a wonderful story of the life of Jesus told through the tale of three trees. Each tree has a dream for what they want to be when they grow tall..... and like most of our desires, we may get what we want, just not the way we thought we would get it.

An absolutely beautifully illustrated book and an enchanting retelling of an American folktale. The Tale of Three Trees was the first book I purchased for my children book collection in 1994. I was introduced to the book right before Christmas by my husband (at the time my boyfriend) and he had actually had to force me to read the book. It was an emotional discovery and I just had to go purchase a copy for myself. Like most Christian stories and folktales, you don't have to be Christian to appreciate the message it brings.

A great read for the whole family at Christmas and Easter or anytime you need a reminder to hold on to your dreams because things will work out better than you ever expected in the end.

Thursday, April 21, 2011


Naive was one of those amazing finds in Anthropologie. And for those of you have yet to venture into an Anthropologie then you are really missing a great shopping experience. For some reason some of my most treasured books have come out of this wonderful store.

Naive is 171 pages of pure graphic design heaven. A wonderful look at patterns, typography, and illustrations. From concert posters to fashion advertisements to greeting cards, all done in a very modernism/ folk art approach to contemporary graphic design. No reading, just jammed pack of great works that will inspire your next project or your next 10 projects.I originally purchased the book because of all the wonderful nature and tress with in the first few pages. I love trees and birds so much and there are so many wonderful approaches to both subjects through out the book. The color schemes and different techniques to the same subject make me want to start sketching out my own versions. But in the end I found the book to be more surprisingly packed with great and unusual works that intrigue. I've been introduced to a whole new group of illustrators with gorgeous talent.

I've only given in to letting you see just a few pages of pure bliss, but is a must own book. these images would be hard to seek out by just using google. A book packed with such imagery and imagination should be enjoyed and be an inspiration for young minds.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011


I bought this book some years ago in at the San Diego Museum of Art in their gift shop. It was a wonderful find! I loved the cover and then read the book with in minutes and was crying at the end. It's a quick read but packed with lots of emotion. The book was originally published in France in 1964, but the message is still so relevant today.
Each page is a delight in expressive illustrations and typography. Anyone who loves illustration, typography and unique books this is a find. Note that this is NOT a children's book. I did read it once to my 4 year old daughter and she was in tears from the beginning, and was upset for sometime after reading the book. I felt horrible about it.
This is a raw look at not being loved as a small little girl and being all alone in the world with only one desire and this is to love someone, anyone.
The book really makes you think about the importance of compassion, understanding and above all Love.
If you turn the last page and not burst into tears or at least feel love bursting inside of you then you might just be a loveless person.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Masters Of Illustration

A few weeks ago my husband surprised me. After tucking the kids into bed for the night I came downstairs to sit with my husband while he ate his dinner after arriving home from an extremely long day. The days have been long for both of us lately, and I gushed with excitement as if it were Christmas morning and Saint Nick had brought me a pony. Sitting on the table was Masters of Illustration by David Downton. I have been admiring his amazing talent for years and have scooped up every article, and book that talks about him. I took the book to bed with me that night and began reading it from beginning to end. What a treasure it is.

The book starts off with his favorite illustrators of fashion from about the 1800's through present time, ending with a wonderful collection by him. Its an illustrated look back at fashion it's history and where Mr Downton gets his inspiration and style from.

I myself, am struggling with a "new look" or creating a "better me" in my illustrations, and this book couldn't have arrived at a better time. I am working on a whole new set of subjects and a fresh look at inspiration and fashion is just what I need to keep my focus clear and moving a a beautiful direction.
You can see a bit of all the artists reflected in his amazing strokes and color. I don't want to give too much away, but this is a must for anyone who has a love for fashion/illustration and the magic that is David Downton.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Fashion Sketchbook

This was the first fashion illustration book I ever purchased. It's had it's share of wear and tear over the years and was worth every penny I paid for it. For ages I thought I would be working in the fashion industry and dreamed about being the next David Downton. But I have sense changed gears a bit but still find myself referencing this book constantly.

The book is filled from beginning to end with how to do's and it wonderful especially if you are a beginner at fashion illustration as apposed to life drawing, comic, or manga illustration. They all have their own special "look" and you need to know proportions and techniques as you develop your own style.

I love that the book just doesn't' focus on women's fashion but also kids and men. From posing to dressing you'll get all the know how for all your little or big fashion sketches.

The book also goes over finishing up your sketch with color and details.

And even has guest artists with some of their very stylish illustrations. It really gets you pumped for creating your own style.

I'm thrilled to see that there is now a fifth addition and really really want to purchase it.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

My Dad's a Birdman

I've been reading to my daughter for 4 years now, and yes, that means she is 4 years old. I purchased this book shortly after her 2nd Birthday and began reading her chapters after nap time in 2009 (2 years after the book was published). It was an absolute treat! Very imaginative, dreamy, funny and lovable. Even though it's a chapter book with few images, the text give enough color and illusion that anyone with an imagination can bring the story to life inside themselves. And my very imaginative 2 year old was no different. Since the first reading of the book at age 2, I have read it to her 2 more times. She absolutely loves the book.

It's a delightful story of a little girl named Lizzie and her very unusual dad and a very extraordinary competition.
But I am one to judge a book by it's cover and I must say this one says it's worth a read, so I couldn't resist buying it. I was a little worried that buying a chapter book with a scattering of illustraions might not be enjoyable to a 2 year old, but I was wrong. With only 17 chapters we had the book finished in less than 2 weeks. It was a quick read and each chapter was engaging and fun. As quick as you fall in love with the delightful illustrations you will fall in love with the charming story of determination, grief, strength, and love.