Jules: We have the ever-resourceful and thoughtful Little Willow to thank for our featured illustrations this week. Knowing that we like illustration and knowing that we have a particular fondness for Alice images, Little Willow passed on the web site of Argentinian illustrator Fernando Falcone to us. And then we all three ooh’ed and aah’ed over his art work featured over there; pictured here is A Mad Tea-Party (created in 2006). And then I shamelessly asked him if we could feature some of those illustrations over here at 7-Imp. Despite our language barriers (man, I wish I spoke Spanish), he agreed to let us show his art work. Isn’t it amazing? Eisha is travelling as I type this, but I believe her words when she saw the White Rabbit here were “positively terrifying” (and that’s a compliment).
We immediately fell in love with Fernando’s style. If you like what you see here, there are plenty of images of his art work over at his site. There are two galleries over there of his arresting, gorgeous, and sometimes terrifying images. (This one pretty much nails the kinds of night terrors I sometimes had as a child.) Here’s one more Alice image.
And, as it turns out, Little Willow learned all about Fernando by reading this post over at Justine Larbalestier’s blog, in which Justine first saw some of Falcone’s art work at a book fair in Bologna while travelling. (Ooh! Ooh! I want those two Alice prints Justine pictures there!) Justine couldn’t remember the artist’s name, but Little Willow did some research and found his site. So, many thanks to both Justine and Little Willow for introducing us to one seriously kickin’ illustrator. Really, is it necessary to list kicks this week? His work could take care of all seven, I think.
(2006); A drawing from Fernando’s “Bocetos”
As a reminder, our 7-Kicks list is the meeting ground for listing Seven(ish) Exceptionally Fabulous, Beautiful, Interesting, Hilarious, or Otherwise Positive Noteworthy Things from the past week — whether book-related or not — that happened to you. Anyone is welcome to come list their kicks, so have at it.
1). A friend who is recovering from breast cancer and finally finished her chemo posted a picture of herself with her FIRST PONYTAILS since the chemo! This is a beautiful, beautiful thing.
2). The Barenaked Ladies just released a new children’s CD. It falls squarely into the category of Will Not Make Adults Want to Gag, though—as Alkelda pointed out recently—there’s enough non-Barney-esque music anymore to guarantee that we probably don’t need to qualify children’s music that way any longer. I think I enjoy this CD as much as—if not more—than my own children. Here’s one of my favorites (and with art work and animation from Kevin Hearn), which could be a 7-Imp Song, since we feature so many illustrators here. I love the opening blueberry pancake with wings, though if I saw it in the sky, I’d still have to grab it and eat it:
3). Hearing David Sedaris read one of his essays on his live-from-Carnegie-Hall CD in my car and laughing so hard I thought I’d have to pull over. I was laughing so hard that my four-year-old thought I was weeping.
4). My husband and I celebrated the 10th anniversary of our first date this week — and with a delicious, kid-free dinner out.
5). Speaking of my husband and children and dinner . . . my husband and I started a new tradition fairly recently where, at the beginning of each meal, we take hands with our girls, one of them counts to three, and we all squeeze one another’s hands three times for “I” and “love” and “you.” We decided to add to this last night by declaring that we would also, before each meal, share one thing that we’re grateful for, maybe something that happened that day. We figured this would be a fairly meaningful way to pause and appreciate before each meal and explained to our daughters—not being sure if they really knew what “grateful” meant—that they’d have to name something they were “happy for.” I started and said I was happy for my husband and children. My husband said he was happy to have spent the entire day, not at work, but with all his girls.
My oldest was all, I’m happy for my birthday presents! Her birthday was almost half a year ago. Then, the littlest said, “I’m happy for CHRISTMAS!”
So much for meaningful.
It was a pretty funny moment anyway.
6). I volunteer-taught a Books-and-Babies program at my local library this week, and I survived.
7). Our kidlitosphere peeps. I’ve been behind and a bit sporadic with my blog-reading (there’s an interesting conversation over at this post at Chicken Spaghetti which partly addresses how easy it is to get behind on kidlitosphere blog-reading), but when I did have time yesterday to get caught up I was greatly rewarded. To name just several things: Cloudscome’s beautiful, original sestina; the John Donne poem Kelly Fineman shared on Friday and, as always, her thoughts on it; “Blues” by Elizabeth Alexander, which Jama shared on Friday; The Birds Barbie doll, which was posted about here but I first learned about at Gwenda’s blog; the improv Commitment Meter, pictured below, which I learned about via a Sara post (and do you think I can lift the phrase “awesome town” and use it here at 7-Imp?); and chatting with Laurel Snyder this week, who cracks. me. up. Not to mention, the NEW ELEPHANT AND PIGGIE GAME at Mo’s site. I’m yelling that, ’cause it’s so fun. You get to make them dance. See for yourself.
Don’t you think this wonderful chart can apply to MUCH MORE in life, not just improv?
7½). Chocolate pecan pie and vanilla ice cream for dessert last night.
Hey, I’m actually in the Berkshires again this weekend - just saw my husband’s latest show. It was awesome. It’s very very late, though, and I’m kinda beat, so I’ll just let that be my one big kick for the week.
Oh, and the tea party scene up there, of course. I LOVE it.
What are your kicks this week? And how eye-popping are those Falcone illustrations?