Friday, May 23, 2014

Lots Going On in My Studio

Hello Blogger Friends, Hope that you all have been doing well. It's been super busy for me with family and work. I feel bad because I haven't really been around. Sometimes life happens so fast that the things you love to do get passed over. I miss you all so very much and I long to come back and start blogging again. I am making time to do so. Wish me luck. Sending you all best wishes and creative thoughts today and everyday. Shalom

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Friday, May 2, 2014

As a child of the 60's, I really didn't see myself in many picture books. I didn't see me reflected in Jack and Jill, Humpty Dumpty Magazines or Golden Children's books. My parents would buy my sister and I these wonderful books and magazines because it was important to be a kid, but it often saddened and frustrated them that the books didn't reflect the people in our home. One day, I went to school and a teacher named, Mrs. Russell, put me on her lap and showed me a wonderful book by Ezra Jack Keats. That book would change my life. "The Snowy Day". Mr. Keats would be one of the first illustrators of children's books that would have a chocolate boy center stage in his book. Peter looked like me. He was beautiful. I never heard a word Mrs. Russell read honestly. It was the pictures that told me the story. It was Peter's cute little brown face against his cozy red snowsuit. It was his mama who looked just like my mama! It had everything to do with his daddy that looked like my daddy. Peter and I were sister and brother in my head and the pictures that Ezra created proved it. The Snowy Day is 50 years old and I just turned 50 last year. It saddens me deeply that we still don't see children of color in books as often as I would like. Of the 3,500 pictures books created last year, only 95 represented people of color. We live in a very multicultural world and it is my joy to be reflected this in the books and product that I create. I would hope that others would begin to feel the same. Don't get me wrong, we have a few, but not enough. I love Mr. Keats's reply to an editor. She asked," Why did you make Peter black? Are you trying to make a statement or something?" Mr. Keats answered, "I put Peter there simply because he should have been there all along." I feel the same way. I believe that ALL children should be represented in Children's book! They all need to see themselves in everyday situation that encourage imagine, diversity , problem solving and community. Every child deserves this. #WENEEDDIVERSEBOOKS