Jerry Pinkney is the American author illustrator who won the Caldecott Medal last year for his amazingly beautiful rendition of the fable The Lion and the Mouse. It is almost wordless and even if you didn't know the story the pictures are enough. He has won many awards and the opening words on his website tell you why. "I am a storyteller at heart. So each project begins with the question, 'Is this story worth telling? Is the manuscript an interesting read? Is it surprising and challenging? Will I, in the process of making pictures, learn something new?'" Looking at the detail in his illustrations and the amount of time spent even on the endpages (see Noah's Ark) you know that Jerry Pinkney loves his job and takes it very seriously.
Australian author, Phil Cummings on the other hand does not take his writing so seriously. Most of his books, especially his bridging novels are humorous and his picture book Boom Bah! with illustrations by Nina Rycroft is lots of fun (and noise) when shared with very young readers. I particularly like using his picture books Midge, Mum and the Neighbours and Marty and Mei-Ling (both out of print) with classes during units of work that require a community, school, families, multicultural-type focus or which deal with prejudice, identity or social interaction.
American author illustrator Jarrett J. Krosoczka is new to me, but I cannot wait to read Baghead with a class next year and make them! It may well be a one-hit wonder because books like this don't sustain many readings once you know the reason, but I can see librarians and teachers having fun with it.