These Slay Me

Classic American Children’s Illustrators

Classic English Children’s Illustrators

I am completely incapable of resisting postcard books. 

Years ago, a book called Mommy, It’s a Renoir! suggested you introduce art to children with art postcards.  And that was all the justification/rationalization I needed.  One of the secret benefits to bibliophiles who homeschool is that an indulgence can morph into needed curriculum faster than you can say amazon dot com.  Who says this job doesn’t have bennies?

So these can function as picture books for toddlers; add a cute frame and you have a baby shower gift; write a note and you have a classy postcard.  Or if you are like me, they are just a delight-filled item that will make you smile.

Who are your favorite children’s book illustrators?

Who comes immediately to mind (but I’m sure I’ve forgotten someone important): Jessie Wilcox Smith, Beatrix Potter, Alan Lee, Kate Greenaway, Tasha Tudor, Garth Williams.


22 thoughts on “These Slay Me

  1. I am just developing my preferences for the illustrator’s of children’s books.  I bought Sherry Early’s preschool curriculum just so I would have a handy list of books.  I also have had fun perusing the Mazza Museum’s website (University of Findlay OH) which is dedicated to the art of children’s books.I think DD#2 would make a good illustrator.She’s my favorite 🙂

  2. i am slain… as in ignorant… i hope it is not too late to learn about recognising and enjoying/admiring children books’ illustrators? (of het ek my naam plank gemaak?)  The last phrase is Afrikaans for – did I make a fool of myself?thank you for introducing me (once again) to something new…. i am at the moment a BIG Wendell Berry fan…. thanx to you, Carol…

  3. @sonskyn – Of course you didn’t make a fool of yourself.  But I’m trying to figure out the literal meaning of gemaak.  Is that the word for fool?I am delighted and thrilled that you have joined the Wendell Berry fan club.  Yay!

  4. gemaak is the verb for made – and to literally translate the phrase (which is actually slang – non-existing – one of those common usage slangs) would be to say: did I make (maak) my name (like a piece of) plank?  – totally nonsense…. if you want to learn an Afrikaans expression – this is it: all South Africans say ja-nee as a general comment. Ja (soft j) means yes, and nee (as in near without the r) means no…. why we say it, I don’t know…. and another! (since 1994) is Eish… (Origins: Unknown) (pronounced like aysh but also, less often, as ish) – Used to express everything ranging from frustration to surprise to disapproval, but also just everyday acknowledgement of things you can’t change like “Eish, the traffic is bad today”. You will hear it within a few minutes of each and every day! 

  5. @sonskyn – Thank you for the language lesson.  I mean it.  I love to learn stuff like this.  Gemaak – maak = make, yes!  And I’m wondering if ge- is related to all those words beginning with ge: gestation, generation….Other cultures have a yes/no equivalent.  Oy vey!  comes to mind.  I like Eish.  Perhaps I could start a trend here…(grin)My South African aunt used the word “Shame” a lot when she visited more twenty years ago.  It was the standard response for anything that meant “too bad.”  It looks like it’s going to rain today. Shame.  Milk is up to $4/gallon. Shame.  Most of the meaning was bled out of the word.

  6. @magistramater – thank you – i was wondering if i was not too “voor op die wa” (presumptuous) – literally translated: sitting at/on the front of the wagonge – actually indicates past tense: maak = present tense; gemaak = past tense – and it is a soft sound. We have a very simple tense structure – most Afrikaans people struggle immensely with English tenses. It’s like Greek to us (them). And yes, shame  is sort of the white version of eish (which originated in Soweto).

  7. Hi Carol,  I loved your comment about using homeschooling as an excuse to collect books. I sure did!  When my children were small we fell in love with Michael Hague’s illustrations and bought quite a few of his books for our collection.

Comments are cinnamon on my oatmeal!

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