Every now and then, I like to check in and see what author/illustrator and designer Craig Frazier is doing. Last June (2011, that is), he visited 7-Imp—his Pearly-Gates Pivot response is still one of my favorites—and shared lots of artwork.
Craig’s got a new illustrated book out, Tyler Makes Pancakes! (HarperCollins, April 2012), written by Food Network chef Tyler Florence. It’s all about a young boy (whose dog, Tofu, is along for the fun), who wakes up with pancakes on the mind and then sets out to make some. In the process, he learns about where the ingredients come from, thanks to Mr. Jones at the local market. (Yep, this is for all those who think pancakes come from a box. No, that’s eggs, buttermilk, butter, flour, and maple syrup, thanks very much.)
Craig’s palette is sunny and his characters boldly-outlined, as you can see above. In their review, Kirkus—calling this a good choice for so-called foodies—wrote: “Capturing the spirit of curiosity is Frazier’s department. The renowned graphic designer has created Tyler as a stick figure with a big round head and a pink nose. Even with a limited palette of mostly blues and ochers, wonder, humor and clarity shine from the pages. The childlike perspective featuring enormous stacks of pancakes and tiny, distant adult faces invites readers into Tyler’s real and imagined worlds.”
Right now, I’m going to turn it over to Craig’s art (and early sketches and drawings). ‘Cause you know how you sometimes need a vacation after your vacation just to get caught up on stuff? That’s been me all week. So, with apologies to Craig for not writing more, here are a few more images from the book before I get to my kicks. (I still haven’t commented on last week’s kicks yet. No, really! I’ve only had time to skim them. This is just all wrong.)
Hey, I like to let the art speak for itself anyway. And I thank Craig for sharing images.
All images are copyright © 2012 by Craig Frazier and used with his 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. New kickers are always welcome.
1) We went on vacation last week to beautiful Maine — primarily Bangor, but then my aunt and uncle drove us all over to see many beautiful places. It was a visit of many “firsts” for my daughters — first visit to Canada, first water taxi ride, first island visit, first seal sighting, first cairn, and even their first time to the Atlantic Ocean.
Oh, and first schooner-races sighting …
2) My aunt and uncle are so smart and fun and kind, and it was so generous of them to have us visit and show us around.
3) Thanks to two good friends, who happened to be in Maine at the same time, my eight-year-old and I got to meet Ashley Bryan in his studio/home on Little Cranberry Island, and he was so kind and attentive and showed us all around and showed us what he’s working on. This is my new favorite picture ever:
4) Speaking of seeing artists’ studios, thanks to yet another thoughtful friend, the girls and I—when we returned home—got a tour of local illustrator Susan Eaddy’s studio/home, and she showed the girls her clay projects. She was just as generous as Ashley. Lucky us to get to meet these people, who share their abundant talents with others.
5) Omnivore Recordings mailed my order this week! They reissued Sam Phillips’ 1994 masterpiece (I do not use this word lightly), Martinis and Bikinis. It’s got bonus tracks! I got it on CD and white vinyl! When I listen to it, suddenly I’m a senior in college again! The music doesn’t even sound dated! It is a killer-good album! I can’t stop using exclamation marks, blast it!
That song right there is called “Same Rain.” It’s not like I haven’t known for nearly twenty years how particularly great this one song is, but in re-discovering the album, I’m reminded of its brilliance. Especially the lyrics and especially those drums. When I turned it up loudly the other day and heard the refrain—“all the money in the world / all the power it can buy / will not take your voice away / cannot own what you hold inside”—I got all misty-eyed. That Sam. She’s extra talented.
6) A lovely picture book surprise in the mail that made my week.
7) A previously unrecorded song from the very talented Laura Marling is sandwiched in these three. This makes me happy to hear, as I’m a fan.
But, wait. This performance from Regina Spektor is all wonderful-ness, too. I showed this to my six-year-old, who, I suspect wants to be Regina for a day. (What can I say? She loves her new CD.)
Did you know Candlewick Press will be celebrating picture books for a year, starting in August? Really wonderful news for us picture book junkies. Here’s the scoop:
BONUS, THE SECOND:
I admit another reason I’m behind on stuff is that I got seriously stuck on Season One of AMC’s The Killing, quite the addictive show (and what NPR notes is part of a genre now called “Nordic noir”). I may or may not have watched the entire season in, ahem, about three nights. It’s not without its flaws, but overall, dang, the writing and acting are superb. I don’t really even watch crime shows, so this is all new to me (though oftentimes I feel like I’m in high school again and watching Twin Peaks).
What are YOUR kicks this week? I think now I’ll finally go and read last week’s … Eventually, I’ll get on the same page, you all.