On the seventh day of the seventh month, my busy tour of bookish events around Seven Days of Daisy began at the Graves Memorial Library in Kennebunkport. Quite auspiciously, too, since I was there over four years ago on a visit with Mitali Perkins and Rickshaw Girl. Nice to start with familiar faces!
In keeping with the summer reading program of One World, Many Voices, I gave a presentation first to a book group of girls who had just read Rickshaw Girl. I showed images from my childhood, my early career as an illustrator, and then sketches and referencing in the making of illustrations for the book. Process is always a good topic, because people are generally curious about the back story. I had to travel in my imagination to be in Bangladesh, and I did that with many visits to my island library, as well as listening to music, eating Indian food, and watching films set in Bangladesh.
That book has led to plenty of other assignments in the same area of the world. I showed this illustration, done for Cricket Magazine, since henna designs are relevant to the alpana designs in Rickshaw Girl. This piece is currently on view in Tell Me a Story: Folktales and World Cultures at the University of Southern Maine's Atrium Art Gallery at Lewiston-Auburn College, through August 12.
And most recently, I worked on illustrations for a curriculum activity for Saraswati's Way by Monika Schroder. Here's my drawing of the goddess of learning and knowledge, Saraswati.
These can be like doodles or radial designs that begin in the center, and expand outward. Or, some decided to draw an imaginary scene, anything that shines with color.
This artist was the last to leave. She needed to get her color all over the page. And maybe a little on herself! Her drawing has a bold palette and strong composition. Hooray!
Another artist decided to make use of patterns. Love all the striped petals here.
The book group cleared out and made way for another round of younger kids who heard my story of the making of Seven Days of Daisy. After reading the book, they got busy creating their own summer story.
This girl was very excited about an upcoming sleepover:
Every day of the week, something cool happens to this girl:
Many thanks to the Graves Memorial Library for a fun exchange of stories and art!
I made it back to the island in time to gather some pieces for the Color of Peaks show at the TEIA, the island sailing and tennis organization down the hill. The "club" as it's known, makes an appearance in Seven Days of Daisy.
It's the large white boathouse that hangs out over the water in the background above. I walk by it every day on my way to the beach with the dog.
"Dusky Diamond View," below, is one of the pastels in the show.
Next week I'll be teaching a Drawing with Color workshop to young artists at the TEIA for three days
followed by a flurry of book visits.
On Thursday, July 14 at 2 PM, I'll be at the Skowhegan Public Library.
The next morning, July 15 at 10:30, I'll be at the Bristol Area Library.
And on Saturday, July 16 I'll be at Bayswater Books in Center Harbor, NH from 11 AM - 1 PM.
Whew! Have pencils, will travel!