Resource Books

Flights of Fancy: Creative Inspiration from Ten Award-Winning Authors & Illustrators

In a beautiful anthology, ten children's book greats share stories, poems, pictures, tips, and prompts meant to inspire young readers to create works of their own.

Have you ever sparked the start of a story by playing a game of What if? Is there any value to all that doodling you do? What does being "a sponge" have to do with facing down a blank page? Did you know that pictures can sometimes inspire stories, rather than the other way around? From Quentin Blake's drawings of fantastical vehicles to Michael Rosen's inside look at his poetry, from Anthony Browne's shape game (no need to be an artist to play) to Lauren Child's look at her creative process, this anthology -- whose contributors were all British Children's Laureates -- aims to encourage budding writers and artists to let their imaginations soar. The final spread is a collection of prompts from all the contributors, passing the creative torch to the next generation.

With contributions by:

Malorie Blackman
Quentin Blake
Anthony Browne
Lauren Child
Julia Donaldson
Anne Fine
Michael Morpurgo
Chris Riddell
Michael Rosen
Jacqueline Wilson

Item No. 9781536205367
$19.99
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Gorey, Edward
Edward Gorey and Peter Neumeyer met in the summer of 1968. Gorey had been contracted by Addison-Wesley to illustrate Donald and the . . . , a children’s story written by Neumeyer. On their first encounter, Neumeyer managed to dislocate Gorey’s shoulder when he grabbed his arm to keep him from falling into the ocean. In a hospital waiting room, they pored over Gorey’s drawings for the first time together, and Gorey infused the situation with much hilarity. This was the beginning of an invigorating friendship, fueled by a wealth of letters and postcards that sped between the two men through the fall of 1969.

Those letters, published here for the first time, are remarkable for their quantity and their content. While the creative collaborations of Gorey and Neumeyer centered on children’s books, they held wide-ranging interests; both were erudite, voracious readers, and they sent each other many volumes. Through their discussions of these books, one marvels at the beauty of thoughtful (and merry) discourse driven by intellectual curiosity.

The letters also paint an intimate portrait of Edward Gorey, a man often mischaracterized as macabre or even ghoulish. His gentleness, humility, and brilliance—interwoven with his distinctive humor—shine in each letter; his deft artistic hand is evident on the decorated envelopes addressed to Neumeyer, thirty-eight of which are reproduced here.

During the time of their correspondence, Peter Neumeyer was an assistant professor at Harvard University and then a professor at Stony Brook University in New York. His acumen and compassion, expressed in his discerning, often provocative missives, reveal him to be an ideal creative and intellectual ally for Gorey.

More than anything else, Floating Worlds is the moving memoir of an extraordinary friendship. Gorey wrote that he felt that they were “part of the same family, and I don’t mean just metaphorically. I guess that even more than I think of you as a friend, I think of you as my brother.” Neumeyer stated, “Your letters . . . your existence has made something of this world that [it] hadn’t the possibility of before.”

Item No. 9780764959479
$35.00
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Hervé Tullet
The first truly interactive book about sculpture for children that asks young readers to create their own unique piece of art.
Item No. 9780714864891
$12.95
Garth Williams, American Illustrator: A Life
Wallace, James D
This is a biography of Garth Williams as an artist and illustrator, of how his journey led him from sculpture awards at the Royal College of Art to capturing the epitome of frontier life in the West, or etching humanity into beloved animal characters. The biography also explores the historical context that affected Williams' life and art, whether in the Old World or fostering cultural expression in the New.
Item No. 9780825307959
$26.95
Golden Legacy: The Story of Golden Books
Marcus, Leonard S

Back in print, the fascinating history of Little Golden Books, in celebration of their 75th anniversary in 2017! With a Foreword by Eric Carle.

Eminent children's historian Leonard Marcus' Golden Legacy chronicles the fascinating story of the creation, marketing, and worldwide impact of Little Golden Books, the most popular children's books of all time. Launched during the dark days of WWII, Golden Books such as The Poky Little Puppy were an instant sensation. Hallmarked by their superlative quality yet affordable to nearly all, they changed the cultural landscape and mirrored our changing postwar culture: the powerful influence of television, the post-Sputnik renaissance in American science education, and the birth of the civil rights movement. Lavishly illustrated with the iconic Golden Book covers and colorful artwork generations of children have pored over, Golden Legacy is a compelling tale of mavericks, innovators, and renowned authors and illustrators. . . a stirring celebration of the humble books in which we scrawled our names, with the cardboard cover and the shiny gold-foil spine.

Item No. 9780375829963
$40.00
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Emberley, Ed
Instructions for creating a variety of shapes and figures using thumbprints and a few simple lines.
Item No. 9780316789684
$8.99
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Gag, Wanda
Wanda Gag rose from poverty in small-town Minnesota to international fame in the 1920s as the author of the children's classic, Millions of Cats. Her early diaries, first published in 1940, are the touching, often humorous record of her youth and her struggles to develop her talent.
Item No. 9780873511735
$24.95
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Foster-Wilson, Lee
Make art and memories with the special kids in your life! Packed with how-to drawing and painting projects, creative prompts, and original crafting activities, The Grown-Up's Guide to Making Art with Kids will inspire you and your little ones to spend hours of creative fun together.

This book includes drawing and painting projects featuring popular, kid-friendly, and on-trend subjects--like dinosaurs, pets, flowers, and robots--that adults and kids can create together. Guided practice pages invite interactivity and allow children and adults to draw and paint the same subjects, side by side, for a fun-filled joint activity. The book's artwork is colorful, approachable, and done using ordinary, easily available art tools, including markers, crayons, colored pencils, and acrylic paint.

In addition to drawing lessons, The Grown-Up's Guide to Making Art with Kids also includes projects and ideas for using artwork created from the prompts in the book to make crafts, including a map, pop-up art, and paper dolls.

The Grown-Up's Guide to Making Art with Kids teaches valuable drawing, painting, and crafting skills to both kids and adults; inspires creativity; and encourages family togetherness. What better way to avoid screen time than by drawing, painting, and creating together with your kids?
Item No. 9781633227392
$14.99
Guerilla Art Kit
Smith, Keri
We are living in a golden age of self-expression. The explosion of user-created content on blogs and social networking sites moved Time magazine to name "You" their 2006 person of the year. But while we may be spending a lot more time in virtual worlds, we have not lost the urge to make our physical world more meaningful. By leaving art and ideas in public places, you can affect someone's daychange their mood or their mindand maybe even change the world in the process!

The Guerilla Art Kit shows how small artistic acts can start a revolution. Keri Smith, noted author of Living Out Loud and the blog Wish Jar Journal, uses her unique drawing and handwriting style to help anyone find and release their inner artist or activist. This visually exciting activity bookfull of step-by-step exercises, cut-out projects, sticker ideas, and morehas both fun assignments and handy tips to help you unleash your creative energy into the streets, where you can really make an impact. From the quick exercisesleaving books for strangers to find, chalking quotes on the sidewalkto the more involvedmaking a "wish tree," guerilla gardening, or making your own stencilsThe Guerilla Art Kit contains everything you need to put your message out into the world.

Item No. 9781568986883
$19.95
Hand Printing from Nature
Bethmann, Laura Donnelly

Discover how to use found natural materials – such as leaves, flowers, feathers, vegetables, fruits, shells, weeds, and wood grain – to print on any surface, from paper and fabric to ceramics, wood, and walls. Simple step-by-step instructions coupled with beautiful photos make it easy and fun to learn the basic techniques.

Imagine shower invitations featuring delicate herbal prints – or a huge room divider screen printed with tall, billowy marsh grasses, flowing water patterns, and fish. Try making one-of-a-kind home furnishings, such as a clothes hamper printed with scallop shells, a footstool printed with cinnamon sticks, or a lampshade printed with willow leaves on bark paper. Or make one-of-a-kind wearables, like an apron printed with sage or a shirt printed with striking geometric shapes cut from maple leaves. There’s something here for every inventive crafter.

Discover how to use natural materials to print on any surface, from paper and fabric to ceramics, wood, and walls. With simple step-by-step instructions and clear photographs, Laura Bethmann encourages crafters of all levels to create original nature prints with leaves, flowers, fruits, shells, stones, and more. Her unique project ideas include stationery printed with maple leaves, a clothes hamper printed with scallop shells, and a pillow printed with cabbage. Before you know it, you'll be designing one-of-a-kind nature prints to reflect your unique personality and style.

Item No. 9781603425599
$20.95
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Oxenbury, Helen
A fascinating, beautiful, and definitive account of the life of esteemed artist Helen Oxenbury.

Filled with insights that span Helen Oxenbury's life -- from her early childhood through a career in children's books that started in the 1960s and is still going strong today -- here is an exquisitely designed and thoroughly entertaining celebration of one of the finest illustrators of our time. Written by acclaimed author Leonard S. Marcus, Helen Oxenbury: A Life in Illustration is a keepsake that is sure to engage and delight everyone from scholars to art aficionados, as well as the many fans who have grown up with Helen Oxenbury's enchanting books.

Item No. 9780763692582
$40.00
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Young, Ed
I knew nothing could happen to us within those walls, in the house Baba built.

In Ed Young's childhood home in Shanghai, all was not as it seemed: a rocking chair became a horse; a roof became a roller rink; an empty swimming pool became a place for riding scooters and bikes. The house his father built transformed as needed into a place to play hide-and-seek, to eat bamboo shoots, and to be safe.

For outside the home's walls, China was at war. Soon the house held not only Ed and his four siblings but also friends, relatives, and even strangers who became family. The war grew closer, and Ed watched as planes flew overhead and frends joined the Chinese air force. But through it all, Ed's childhood remained full of joy and imagination.

This powerful, poignant, and exquisitely illustrated memoir is the story of one of our most beloved children's illustrators and the house his baba built.

Item No. 9780316076289
$17.99
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Wood, James

In the tradition of E. M. Forster's Aspects of the Novel and Milan Kundera's The Art of the Novel, How Fiction Works is a scintillating study of the magic of fiction--an analysis of its main elements and a celebration of its lasting power. Here one of the most prominent and stylish critics of our time looks into the machinery of storytelling to ask some fundamental questions: What do we mean when we say we "know" a fictional character? What constitutes a telling detail? When is a metaphor successful? Is Realism realistic? Why do some literary conventions become dated while others stay fresh?

James Wood ranges widely, from Homer to Make Way for Ducklings, from the Bible to John le Carré, and his book is both a study of the techniques of fiction-making and an alternative history of the novel. Playful and profound, How Fiction Works will be enlightening to writers, readers, and anyone else interested in what happens on the page.

Item No. 9780312428471
$17.00
How Picturebooks Work - Softcover
Scott, Carole
How Picturebooks Work is an innovative and engaging look at the interplay between text and image in picturebooks. The authors explore picturebooks as a specific medium or genre in literature and culture, one that prepares children for other media of communication, and they argue that picturebooks may be the most influential media of all in the socialization and representation of children. Spanning an international range of children's books, this book examine such favorites as Curious George and Frog and Toad Are Friends, along with the works of authors and illustrators including Maurice Sendak and Tove Jansson, among others. With 116 illustrations, How Picturebooks Work offers the student of children's literature a new methodology, new theories, and a new set of critical tools for examining the picturebook form
Item No. 9780415979689
$72.95
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Cann, Helen
With wonderful examples and easy-to-follow instructions, this beautifully illustrated how-to book makes it simple and fun to create one-of-a-kind hand-drawn maps. Helpful templates, grids, and guidelines complement a detailed breakdown of essential cartographic elements and profiles of talented international map artists. From city maps and family trees to treasure maps, palmistry charts, platformgame maps, and more, the wide range of projects collected here will satisfy first-time cartographers as well as veteran mapmakers inspired by the popular map art trend.
Item No. 9781452169910
$27.50
Illustoria Issue #1: Beginnings

A magazine for creative kids and their grown-ups.

Issue#1: Beginnings features Cece Bell, Aaron Becker and so much more!

Each issue features:

  • The creative original work of dozens of contributors (artists, storytellers, musicians, makers)
  • Quality DIY activities for kids
  • Music & book reviews
  • A recipe
  • High-quality, recycled paperstock and soy-based inks
  • A fun way to engage across generations
  • Zero ads

Full color, 64 pages. Recommended for ages 6-12 and the young at heart.

Item No. ILLUS1
$14.00
Illustoria Issue #2: Canvas

A magazine for creative kids and their grown-ups.

Issue 2 features: Herve Tullet, Tony DiTerlizzi, Laurel Snyder and many, many more!

Each issue features:

  • The creative original work of dozens of contributors (artists, storytellers, musicians, makers)
  • Quality DIY activities for kids
  • Music & book reviews
  • A recipe
  • High-quality, recycled paperstock and soy-based inks
  • A fun way to engage across generations
  • Zero ads

Full color, 64 pages. Recommended for ages 6-12 and the young at heart.

Don't miss Issue #1

Item No. ILLUS2
$14.00
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Salisbury, Martin
The successful book illustrator starts by understanding his author's flight of fancy, then rendering the ideas and actions imaginatively in pictorial terms. This unusual and inspiring book was written for art students and ambitious beginners. It instructs on methods of developing both imaginative powers and the technical artistic skills to produce high quality illustrations that will please authors and children's book editors. Separate chapters focus on:
  • Media, materials, and techniques
  • Developing different drawing styles to fit specific storytelling methods
  • Instilling visual personality traits in story characters
  • Creating effective sequential images for storyboards and picture book outlines
  • Design, typography, and preparation for print
  • Illustrating story books for older children
  • Illustrating nonfiction and educational books
  • Breaking into the children's book publishing business Here is solid, practical instruction for students of book illustration, enhanced with more than 250 how-to illustrations in color and black-and-white.
  • Item No. 9780764127175
    $23.99
    Imagine a Forest: Designs and Inspirations for Enchanting Folk Art
    Mirtalipova, Dinara

    From the inspired mind of Dinara Mirtalipova comes Imagine a Forest, a drawing and design guide to creating your own Eastern European folklore inspired artwork. Escape to your own forested fairy tale.

    Imagine a Forest explores the unique style of illustrator Dinara Mirtalipova; a style which is rooted in the rich traditions of Eastern European folklore. This drawing and design guide features instructions and tips on how to draw your own beautiful art in a modern folklore style. Create charming flowers, birds, animals, fairy tale characters, mythical creatures and more.

    The lush and captivating illustrations and encouraging, easy-to-follow advice featured in these step-by-step tutorials will guide you through Dinara's gorgeous folk-art drawings and inspire you to create your own. Dinara even gives you design ideas and project suggestions so you can make and decorate practical things with your beautiful art.

    Don't spend every day in the boring real world--escape to a beautiful Eastern European fairy tale with Imagine a Forest. Who knows what you might find!

    Item No. 9781631062353
    $19.99
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    Dunn, Rae
    In this visually rich hardcover volume, beloved artist Rae Dunn shares her favorite techniques for approaching a blank page. From drawing with your nondominant hand to sketching with objects found in nature, each chapter offers a simple yet surprising catalyst to help readers get in touch with their own creativity. Full of gorgeous watercolors, sketches, original patterns, dreamy photography, and hand-lettered insight from the author, In Pursuit of Inspiration offers a unique glimpse into the process of a successful fine artist. It's the perfect how-to book for artists of all skill levels who prefer freeform experimentation to step-by-step instruction.
    Item No. 9781452168852
    $22.95
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    Munari, Bruno
    First published in Italy in 1956, Bruno Munari's In the Darkness of the Night tells the tale of an interconnected, intimate yet expansive journey across three settings--in the darkness, through a meadow, and into a mysterious cave--through a spellbinding combination of paper stocks, transparencies, cutouts, and simple but lively characters. This timeless artist's book, available in a new English edition, is a must-have for Munari fans, designers, bibliophiles, and lovers of exceptional book design.
    Item No. 9781616896300
    $35.00
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    Lella Gandini

    This critically acclaimed, lavishly illustrated book will help educators create the highest quality learning opportunities for a new generation of children. The Second Edition features substantial and important changes, including the addition of new chapters by pioneers of the work that happens in the atelier who draw on several decades of experience.

    The atelier, or studio, is a key element of the renowned preschools and infant-toddler centers of Reggio Emilia, Italy. This beautiful, full-color resource explores how the experiences of children interacting with rich materials in the atelier affect an entire school's approach to the construction and expression of thought and learning. The authors provide examples of projects and address practical aspects of the atelier, including organizing the environment and using materials. No other book presents a more thorough examination of the philosophy, practice, and essential influence of the Reggio-inspired studio.

    Book Features:

  • A comprehensive approach that addresses learning, collaboration, relationships, and community.
  • The writing and practice of influential educators from Reggio Emilia, including a new chapter by Vea Vecchi.
  • A window into many ateliers/studios within the United States that have created settings and experiences to suit their unique contexts.
  • Updated conversations with the protagonists from Reggio Emilia as they speak about the history and evolution of the atelier.
  • Item No. 9780807756324
    $37.95
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    Julian Rothenstein
    Inside the Rainbow reprints for the first time in English a unique compendium of Soviet-era picture books from the 1920s and 1930s—a high point in the history of children's literature. In the dark and dangerous world of revolutionary Petrograd, some of the greatest Russian poets and artists of the century came together to create a new kind of book for children, one that reflected the endless possibilities of a brave new world. Managing for a time to escape the scourge of state censorship, these books became a haven for learning, poetic irony, burlesque, and laughter. Showcasing more than three hundred brilliant examples from this golden age of illustration and design, Inside the Rainbow also includes translated poems, stories, and key texts by those who bore witness to the Russian revolution.
    Item No. 9781616893781
    $35.00
    John Burningham - Hardcover
    Burningham, John
    A beautiful collectors' volume showcasing the art, life, and inspiration of a celebrated author-illustrator. (All ages)

    Take a look behind the scenes at the work of John Burningham, one of the world's most talented children's book creators, in this fascinating masterwork showcasing everything from sketches to background stories, family photos to full-color art. Complete with a foreword by Maurice Sendak, an introduction by the distinguished children's book author, critic, and curator Brian Alderson, and copious notes and revelations by the author-illustrator himself, this gorgeous showpiece belongs on the shelf of everyone who loves -- or aspires to -- the art of children's book creation. A signed book plate is included.

    Item No. 9780763644345
    $70.00
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    Step into a world of star-crossed lovers, magical winds, mischievous giants, and trolls, through some of the most exquisite illustrations in publishing history. In this gorgeous reprint, TASCHEN revives the most ambitious publication project of beloved Danish artist Kay Nielsen, one of the most famous children's book illustrators of all time.

    First published in 1914, East of the Sun and West of the Moon is a celebrated collection of fifteen fairy tales, gathered by legendary Norwegian folklorists Peter Christen Asbjørnsen and Jørgen Engebretsen Moe on their journeys across Norway in the mid-nineteenth century. Nielsen's illustration edition of Asbjørnsen and Moe's tales is considered a jewel of early 20th-century children's literature, highly sought-after by art and book collectors worldwide. An original signed copy of the book sold at auction in 2008 commanded the highest price ever paid for an illustrated children's book.

    This finely crafted reprint restores the stunning detail and artistry of Nielsen's images to their original splendor. Featuring 46 illustrations, including many enlarged details from Nielsen's rare original watercolors, the book is printed in five colors with a lovingly designed slipcase. Three accompanying essays, illustrated with dozens of rare and previously unseen artworks by Nielsen, explore the history of Norwegian folktales, Nielsen's life and work, and how this masterpiece came to be.

    Item No. 9783836532297
    $39.99