One of my fondest memories growing up was playing soccer (better known as fútbol). I was enthralled by the fact that you had to control a wild bouncing ball with just your feet. It soon became a big part of my social life with games and tournaments during three seasons of the year. (I still have scars on my knees from indoor soccer turf!)
In her first children’s book called Fútbol!, author and illustrator Taleen Keldijan has captured the spirit of the game that’s enjoyed around the world. Through activities like coloring, puzzles, and drawing, kids ages four to nine can learn about soccer, exercise their imagination, and be introduced to other cultures. That’s an aspect I really like about this book—its inclusivity, and showcasing how different places celebrate the fúbtol.
If it looks like a stump of wood… it might not be a stump of wood—it could be a book! Artist Pochiko HO has done exactly this with a handmade text that’s about insects. The clever book’s natural-colored pages are contained within a small chunk of tree bark. Simply remove the book from the circular stump and reveal the winged insects that live inside.
Here’s another mixed media piece, also about insects:
A few weeks ago, I made a (very) short video about the book Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland that gave you a brief introduction to the awesome illustrations that lie within. Well, I’ve made another video in that same vein—this time, we’re traveling through The Wonder Garden written by Jenny Broom and illustrated by Kristjana S. Williams.
The book “opens the gates of the Wonder Garden” and takes us through five of Earth’s habitats: the Amazon Rainforest; the Great Barrier Reef; the Chihuahuan Desert; the Black Forest; and the Himalayan Mountains. Each of its 80 illustrated animals are drawn with a technical hand and stunning attention to detail—the tiny lines are reminiscent of old scientific engravings. This vintage feel, however, is offset by the bold neon colors that permeate the pages. The hues put a contemporary spin on the entire thing.
These are some of my favorite spreads, below. When you read this book, get ready to LEARN. There’s a lot of information packed in those pages.
What if you could travel to any era in history, where would you go? That’s the premise of Diary of a Time Traveler by David Long and illustrated by Nicholas Stevenson. The children’s book revolves around young Augustus and Professor Tempo—when the boy falls asleep in history class, his teacher decides to teach him a lesson that the past isn’t boring at all. Professor Tempo then hands Augustus a magic diary, where all he needs to do is write a time and place to travel there.
I’ve got a copy of this book to giveaway! Scroll down to enter.
Together, student and teacher travel throughout time and geographical locations to meet famous inventors, leaders, writers, painters, athletes, and more. Each double-page spread covers a different place and era. Augustus writes an introduction to explain the sights and sounds, while the Professor provides interesting captions—facts—about the locale.
Some of the 100+ famed figures include: Mozart; Louis XIV; Shakespeare; Leonardo Da Vinci, and Marie Curie. They cover events around the world, with more a focus on Western culture.
Let’s get to the illustrations. They’re easily my favorite part of the entire book! I was a fan of Nicholas’ work before Diary of a Time Traveler, and this just confirms his talent. I love the character design—they’re stylized, cartoonish, and quirky—and the various textures make the images visually exciting page after page.
Get this book for yourself! Enter to win my giveaway!
To enter, leave a comment on this post (make sure I have a way to contact you!). If you’re on Instagram, double your chances by following @brwnpaperbag and liking the giveaway photo. Open to anyone around the world.
Giveaway ends on Tuesday, December 8, 2015 at 11:59PM EST. Good luck!
Discarded books have found a new life with the work of Isobelle Ouzman. Her intricate, sculptural illustration carve into the publications’ pages, creating mystical landscapes that tell a whole new story—separate from the book’s original tale. Many of her compositions feature pen and ink drawings, but sometimes she’ll accent areas with watercolor paints.
Ouzman sells her altered books through her Etsy shop. She occasionally takes commissions, too. Wouldn’t this be perfect for the book lover in your life?