Carin Berger’s Very Possible and
Very Good 3D Art Before Breakfast

h1 January 3rd, 2012 by jules


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I’m doing something a little different today. Author/illustrator Carin Berger is visiting, which always makes me happy, but the slightly different part here is that she’s sharing art from a book not scheduled to come out till over a year from now. But, hey, why not? Right? I always like to check in to see what Carin’s doing, and as you can read below, she’s having fun with dioramas, her three-dimensional art — and the results are good. Very good. (I’d like to live inside Carin’s brain for at least one day, thanks very much.)

So, let’s get right to it. Carin (who visited me for a cyber-breakfast in 2009) is here to explain what in the hubba-what I’m talking about here:

Carin: “The dioramas/shadow boxes illustrate Jack Prelutsky’s new collection of poems, Stardines Swim High Across the Sky and Other Poems. Like his book, Behold the Bold Umbrellaphant: And Other Poems, which I illustrated in 2006, these poems are about imaginary animals, mash-ups of animals and their particular character traits. For example, stardines, sardines which swim across the night time sky, or jollyfish, jellyfish which are always merry and full of glee.

This seemed a perfect opportunity to reference my passion for wunderkammers and early science — and crusty old museums. What if the whole book was created to be an archive of these fanciful creatures, a document perhaps found in the basement of the natural history museum?

I looked at all kinds of early science materials, something that brought me much delight. It was also a thrill to venture into new territory: 3D! (I’m not sure how I’ll ever go back to 2D.)

Anyhow, the book isn’t due out for ages, not until a year from February. Here’s a link to Greenwillow’s video that they made when they came to see the final art.

Thanks to Carin for sharing. That whistle-happy song, incidentally, is almost better than coffee. Here is more art below. Enjoy.


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All images and the video used with permission of Carin Berger.

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16 comments to “Carin Berger’s Very Possible and
Very Good 3D Art Before Breakfast”

  1. How fun! Totally love the Tattlesnake (in the video) and the Stardines and Fountain Lion. The Slobster had me cracking up.
    Thanks for a morning dose of awesome art, as well as an introduction to wunderkammers!
    Can’t wait til this book comes out!


  2. Yee-Haw! That’s good stuff. Is it possible for me to already have a favorite book from 2013? I think it is.


  3. The Slobsters for me. Definitely the Slobsters.

    (You’re right about the song, too!)


  4. How great are these! They remind me of those puzzles where you have to guess what the creature would be…


  5. I love the detail, the thought, the whimsy, and the movement in these!


  6. Wow, these are really something! The Fountain Lion is my personal favorite.


  7. Okay, I *clearly* need to do some shadow boxes. I mean, NOW. Imagine the fun you could have with a thrift-shop briefcase, some art papers, and some really rich fabric backing… and a hole punch. Some glue… die cuts…

    I need a jollyfish. That is all.

    Thanks for sharing this, Jules. Carin Berger has such a fun style. And what a perfect illustration for poetry! And I’m going to do a little bouncy cha-cha to that whistling song all morning.


  8. Wow, these are GORGEOUS!! Way to go Carin! I am so looking forward to this book~


  9. Love them! Makes me want to go hunting for cool stuff right now (both peculiar creatures and cool found objects/papers/etc. to cut up and re-order!).


  10. I’m in love with the lobster with his fork and spoon :).


  11. These are TERRIFIC, Carin. I’m so proud to know you.


  12. I adore Carin Berger’s art and love these 3D animal portraits — stunning!


  13. fabulous..,.so much fun and incredibly inventive and so skillfully carried out….can’t wait for the book to come out…now on to an exhibit of the boxes at a good gallery!!!


  14. [...] Carin Berger (January 3, 2012) on creating the illustrations for Jack Prelutsky’s Stardines Swim High Across the Sky and [...]


  15. How awesome. Can’t wait to see this book when it comes out!


  16. Gorgeous post! I used Carin’s books as examples of exemplary collage and beautiful design in my picture book workshop at the SCBWI conference last weekend.


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