7-Imp’s 7 Kicks #234: Featuring Joyce Wan

h1 August 28th, 2011 by jules

Every now and then, the 7-Imp portion of my brain realizes that I don’t spend enough time focusing on board book illustrations, art for the wee’est of humans.

Well, today I’m gonna.

This morning I shine the spotlight on Joyce Wan, whose art, she tells me, is inspired by Asian traditional and popular culture. She also comes from an architectural design background and loves creating those books for wee ones that are tactile or contain interactive elements.

In August, Joyce released, via Scholastic/Cartwheel, You Are My Cupcake, a tribute to all the endearments that come flying from our mouths when we see children (“cupcake,” “peanut,” “pumpkin,” “sweet pea,” etc.) Publishers Weekly wrote about this one: “Embossed for a satisfying tactile effect, Wan’s digitized characters, reminiscent of Japanese animation, have chocolate-brown eyes and rosy cheeks.” But, best of all, they added that “no actual cupcakes were harmed in the making of this crowd-pleasing plum.” Um, as far as we know. I should have asked Joyce about that. (AND about honey-roasted peanuts.)

In September, Joyce followed that book with We Belong Together (also Scholastic/Cartwheel), just selected for entry into the Society of Illustrators’ 2011 Original Art show. This one’s an ode to pairs, because peanut butter and jelly and hot cocoa and marshmallows are good, but parent plus baby is much better.

These are vivid, densely-colored illustrations, many with pleasing patterns for the wee eye, and as you can see, there’s a lot of pizzazz here. These are short books with embossed illustrations, which baby will want to reach out and touch.

Joyce, pictured left, also happens to have her own stationery and gift design studio. For those wanting to see more, Wanart is here in cyberspace. You will also see at that site that she teaches courses on the business of greeting card design and art licensing at New York’s School of Visual Arts.

Here’s a peek at some of the art, and I thank Joyce for sharing this morning …

(Photo showing the embossing on the pages of You Are My Cupcake

(Cover of Wan’s 2009 debut title, Greetings from Kiwi and Pear)

All art is copyright © 2011 by Joyce Wan and used with her permission.

Note for any new readers: 7-Imp’s 7 Kicks is a weekly meeting ground for taking some time to reflect on 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.

* * * Jules’ Kicks * * *

Manuscript deadline. Manuscript deadline. Manuscript deadline. And apparently all I can do is mutter in short, tiny sentences. Still typing. Still noting references. Still slammed.

But just for now. It will all get turned in this week.

So, back to work. Oh, except to say that I hope all of you on the East Coast are a-okay, given the wrath of Hurricane Irene.

Please do tell me your kicks. I will enjoy the break, reading them.

25 comments to “7-Imp’s 7 Kicks #234: Featuring Joyce Wan”

  1. Thanks for the pie and cupcakes! Joyce’s books are darling.

    My kick is surviving a quake and a hurricane in the same week. Other than rattled nerves, we were very lucky not to have sustained any damage to our home and property.

    Good luck with your manuscript deadline. Manuscript deadline. Manuscript deadline.

    You can do it. All will be well. Drink coffee. Eat pie.

  2. Jama, whew. So glad you all are okay. I mean, REALLY. Earthquake and hurricane in one week. FOR REAL. Amazing.

    I am, indeed, about to go get coffee. XO.

  3. What two really sweet book. A second grade teacher has her daughter’s board books in a basket in her classroom now that the daughter is 7. The students absolutely love them!
    Jules, keep working. Keep working. Keep working.
    Jama, so glad everything is okay for you. Cant’ believe that two giagantic events happend last week on the east coast.
    My kicks are short. Mostly I am glad that friends and family are safe back east. I am redoing the computer/writing room and its coming together.
    Picked the first tomato today, yum!
    Have a good week,

  4. Thanks for the lovely post Jules! There may have been some cupcake casualties (red velvet specifically – my favorite!) but I prefer to call it ‘research’. 😉

    Good luck with your manuscript deadline!

  5. Jone, are you all getting rain there, too? (I mean, I know it’s not Irene-related, duh, but I’m just hoping you are having good weather.) Have a tomato for me.

    Joyce, thanks, and why doesn’t my research right now require cupcakes? No fair, I say.

  6. Isn’t it funny how many of the world’s terms of endearment are confections and eatables? (mon petit chou and sugar pies.) I can remember when my boys were little munchkins, people would say things like “He’s so adorable, I could just eat him up!”

    Yes to Joyce Wan’s choice of sprinkles! On cupcake and the TITLE.

    Jules – I think you’re due a cupcake or a donut (w/sprinkles) with that coffee; a good ole sugar rush can do wonders in a crunch. Good luck!

    Jama – Survival is a very good kick.

    jone – Have fun redoing your room (isn’t reorganizing grand?)

    joyce – Red velvet rocks. Thanks for sharing your sweet book.

    My kicks:
    1. Younger son and hubby off hiking, camping in San Gorgornio Mts. It was fun watching them discuss (so serious!) and pack for the trip: sleeping bags, protein bars, freeze-dried Pad Thai, Swiss army knives.
    They proudly called me from their camp near the crest ridge yesterday.

    2. Kidlit potluck last week. Party was planned from 4:30 to 7:30pm, but we were still drinking wine and sharing ideas and laughs at 9:30.

    3. Listening to “The Hobbit” on CD in my car and reading “The Monstrumologist” in cafes. In an August dark-quest mood, I guess.

    Have a good and natural-catastrophe-free week all.

  7. I’m glad you’re OK, Jama! That storm looked huge!

    1. which reminds me, we now have the first bananas back in the shops from North Queensland after the cyclone earlier this year. Obviously expensive bananas are not the worst thing that can happen from a big storm, but it’s nice they’re growing back
    2. Board game night with family Saturday night. Lots of laughing.
    3. Still loving the sight of chickens pecking around the yard
    4. Bicycles put together after being in storage since we moved
    5. Before I lived in the UK I was never amazed the way I am now that jasmine flowers here in winter. And we have a prolific bunch taking over a bit of the fence and nearby tree here – looks and smells gorgeous.
    6. I got out of bed in time to remember to drag out our green waste bin – it’s only collected once a fortnight so it would have been irritating to have missed it

  8. I seemed to have chopped of the start of my post! Good luck with the book, Jules! And I love board book recommendations at the moment as my niece is fond of dragging books around with her so tough but good books are a necessity!

    Hope your first tomato was delicious, Jone!

    Enjoy your quest month Denise!

  9. So, I was really good at doing kicks for about three weeks a few months ago and then I fell off the bandwagon so here goes…

    1. I am glad I am back to doing kicks
    2. I am super glad that we still have power and no immediate water damage to our house although many others in our community can’t say the same
    3. I am glad the earthquake was just a little blip in the week- what a week it’s been!
    4. I’m glad that my older daughter has camp next week so she and my little can have some time apart- absence making the heart grow fonder and all that…
    5. I’m glad that I have an interview tomorrow for a potentially exciting part time position
    6. I am glad I just had a super yummy dessert
    7. I am glad I got to 7 kicks- even if I cheated a bit!

    Good Luck this week Jules! Go Book!!!

  10. Hi! Last week I was in Portland, Oregon, which was a kick in itself. This week, it’s sunny and warm in Seattle. I think of all of you dealing with the east coast hurricane, and empathize. I remember when I lived in Maryland, a tree came down on our house during a hurricane. As I watched it from the kitchen window, for a few seconds, I thought, “Okay, there goes my life. Bye!”

    Here I am, still alive. That’s a kick.

    1. Oregon Museum of Science and Industry rocks. In the chemistry labs, you get to do chemistry experiments. In the physics labs, we got to play a theramin and make our hair stand on end (not at the same time, though).

    2. After I run, I put vegetable-themed stickers on my calendar.

    3. My daughter is drawing a series of comics that involve a guy named Don and an atom that speaks (it fell off his hand and follows him around, emitting innocent utterances that spook everyone).

    4. I went to the market, and I brought home raspberry-peach jam.

    5. The premise in Scott Westerfeld’s Leviathan that Darwin discovered DNA as well as evolution.

    6. Judy Garland’s “Somewhere Over the Rainbow” always gives me chills in The Wizard of Oz.

    7. In our house, “If you stomp on someone, it means you want to be stomped on” has become a catch-phrase.

    Bonus kick: Yesterday, during a walk, my daughter stopped in the middle of the street with a shriek of joy. She has been obsessed with finding the true title of “The Thinking Song” that an ice-cream truck plays. We went to the ice-cream truck and asked the owner if he knew the name of the song. He didn’t. I bought an ice-cream sandwich and then made a recording of the song with the audio note feature on my phone. We’re one step closer to finding the song’s true name.


  11. Denise, so good to read the potluck was a success, though I’m not surprised. Oh, to be a fly on the wall! Hope your son and husband have a blast…

    Emmaco, never underestimate the power of a fun board game. And I just realized I don’t think I’ve actually ever smelled jasmine. Hmm…must remedy that.

    Stacey, I hope the job will still be literacy-coach-related and such…Good luck! Glad you all have power and are safe and such.

    Farida, my kick #8 (but really I’ll move it up to #1) is that the tree in MD never hit you. Also: I’m going to email you something RIGHT NOW.

  12. Fly by posting to check in and make sure everyone is okay, safe and sound from the storms. Wishing you and yours well. BE SAFE.

    Jules & company, good luck with the manuscript!

    Sorry for the short post. All day tech rehearsal so I wasn’t online. Just wanted to say hi.

  13. Hi, LW! And thanks….

  14. I am belated, but I am LOVE Joyce’s board book art (and the notecards, THE NOTECARDS). I’m glad to hear all are safe and sound, too, and I am still cheering you on for your deadline, Jules. Coffee, coffee, coffee.

  15. Boohoo, I’m late too. Ah well. Better late than never, eh?
    1. School, school, school
    2. A big order of books (including N.D. Wilson’s The Dragon’s Tooth) on its way
    3. A laptop also on its merry way
    4. Hobbit sketch going well
    5. Great day with friends
    6. A nice cool day when it’s been over 90 for a while now
    7. Still crazy about Josh Garrels.

    Cute picture book!

  16. Adrienne, if you approve of Joyce, that’s even better, ’cause I know you know your board books. Thanks for the cheers.

    Hannah, what good mail you’ll have in the next week or so. And ooh! ooh! You should share your Hobbit sketch (if you’re so inclined) …

    Back to the grind. Thanks to you all for visiting and sharing happy things.

  17. How do you mean, share it, seeing as I have no blog of my own?

  18. Oh, oops. You could email it to me, and I’ll share it here! (Only if you want)….

  19. Oh! Thanks, I will! As soon as it’s done, I’ll take a picture of it (my scanner is terrible) and send it on. I still have another hobbit to draw! But I would love it (actually, I’d be quite honored) if you posted it here. Keep a lookout for it in your email!

  20. Will do!

  21. Hey, everyone. It’s Hannah’s Hobbit sketch, Merry and Pippin “guarding” Isengard:

    And here’s her Dragon Slayer, though not from a book:

    Thanks for sharing, Hannah …

  22. […] more about Joyce by reading this wonderful interview at SEVEN IMPOSSIBLE THINGS BEFORE BREAKFAST! Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:LikeBe the first to like this post. Tagged art, joyce […]

  23. […] Seven Impossible Things Before Breakfast […]

  24. […] talking about today is You Are My Cupcake by Joyce Wan. Read what Jules has to say about it here, and view Wan’s amazing notecards […]

  25. […] Book Month logo creator: Joyce Wan. Image used with […]

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