Sunday, November 7, 2010

7th November

Yesterday was Craig Smith's birthday.

Craig Smith is a popular Australian illustrator with more books in my library than any other author or illustrator. When Craig came to talk to the children at school we collected together all of his books and the children were so surprised at how many their were. It became a game counting them, quite a feat for the kindergarten children because there were more than one hundred. This is not surprising given that his first book Black Dog for Christobel Mattingley was done in 1976 and he has been illustrating ever since. On his very extensive website, Craig says that he prefers to do black and white drawings and that he like to create the body language and expression which is an important but often unwritten part of the story. I also found it interesting that from his bibliography he could single books out as favourites. Among my favourites are Just You Wait! by Megan de Kantzow; Game Plan by Emily Rodda; Where's Mum? by Libby Gleeson; Doctor Frank's Monster by Nigel Gray and Billy the Punk by Rebecca Carroll. He is also responsible for many popular series of books - Toocool with Phil Kettle; Emily Eyefinger with Duncan Ball; The Cabbage Patch Fib with Paul Jennings; the family series with Rachel Flynn eg. My Grandma and Me and the series that began with Bob the Builder and the Elves by Emily Rodda.

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