On-the-spot Portraits

On-the-spot portraits I made of kids during school visits for October's Taleblazers Literary Fest. Thanks to the schools who hosted me and the students who sat for me! And to the Young Alberta Book Society, who organized the tour. If you want to bring real live authors and artists to your Alberta classroom or library, check them out: www.yabs.ab.ca.

Story Avenue

Four hundred kids.
Five Edmonton schools.
Nine writers and illustrators.
Welcome to Story Avenue!
In my workshops, we made the shortest possible storyboards. Since some of my fave writers and illustrators were next door, I kinda wanted to sneak away to see what they were doing in THEIR classrooms!
Thanks to the Young Alberta Book Society and all the amazing volunteers, teachers and sponsors who make this annual Story Avenue event happen. And to the great group of students from Mee-Yah-Noh, Norwood, Oliver, John A. McDougall and Delton Schools: Keep on writing, drawing and thinking!


Back to School!

Seven schools in six towns! Courtesy of the Young Alberta Book Society’s Taleblazers Author Tour, I talked to hundreds of kids about writing and illustrating books in October. Here are some on-the-spot-portraits I made of some of my audience. A big thank you to teachers and librarians of Swan Hills, Lendrum, Holy Family, Father Scollen, Magrath, Foremost and Turner Valley for hosting me!

YABS Confab

Pictured: Bill Bunn, Val Lawton, Maureen Bush

Thirteen writers, illustrators and storytellers from the Young Alberta Book Society gathered last night for the first Calgary YABS Confab. If you're a teacher, librarian or parent, you should know about the Young Alberta Book Society (www.yabs.ab.ca) - YABS helps to organize and fund school author and artist visits.

Artist and authors of the Young Alberta Book Society make all kinds of stories, from picture books to middle grade and young adult novels to storytelling concerts. And they travel to the far corners of the province to share their literary know-how with schoolkids.

In between swapping news of our latest books and talking about creativity and work, we drew exquisite corpse pictures, a kind of group drawing. Each person draws a section of a picture in sequence without seeing what the person before them drew.

Here are some of the more family-friendly exquisite corpses:

Thanks to the talented crew who showed up for a spirited discussion and a fun evening: Maureen Bush, Jan Markley, Carolyn Pogue, Jacqui Guest, Jacqueline Hudon-Verrelli, Sandy Nichols, Bill Bunn, Mary Hays, Shenaaz Nanji, Shirlee Smith-Matheson, Faye Reinberg Holt, Val Lawton.

(Now go read their books!)


Arctic Walk

I met some writers and artists from the Young Alberta Book Society a couple of weeks ago. We brought sketchbooks to the Royal Alberta Museum's Arctic Show.

I love Inuit artist Irene Avaalaaqiaq's wall hangings, both for the design and the content. She uses bold shapes and bright colors to depict fantastic creatures, she says, from the time "when animals used to talk like human beings."

Here's what I drew in my sketchbook, after Irene Avaalaaqiaq: