Sunday, December 4, 2016

5 with Sarah Aspinall of Penguins Love Colors

For today's post I turn the LibLaura5 blog over to Sarah Aspinall, creator of Penguins Love Colors.

Sarah, thank you so much for stopping by my blog to share about your new book Penguins Love Colors by finishing my 5 purple prompts.

[Sarah:] Thank you for having me, it’s lovely to be here!

Penguins… are so much fun to illustrate!  I adore animals of all kinds and any excuse to draw and paint them I will take!  Did you know there are approximately 17 different types of penguins? Not all of them live in the cold like mine do, in fact, the smallest breed of penguin, called a Fairy Penguin, (the biggest ones grow to just 13” tall, with a maximum weight of 3.3 lbs!) lives in Southern Australia, Tasmania and New Zealand!
It was also very important to me that I make the world of the book as void of color as possible so that when the creativity begins (much like starting a drawing on a blank piece of paper, or painting a fresh canvas) the colors truly burst across the page/snow!  There are no limits!  What better choice than a sibling group of playful black and white penguins!

Broccoli… is delicious!  My best friend and I used to eat it nearly every day with cheese and spicy sauce (those were the frugal days of living in London in my early 20’s- ha!).  
The penguins all have very specific names linking them to their favorite colors.  I wanted to have one, named Broccoli, that was a little out of the ordinary.  I think we almost all have that quirky friend or family member who is a little different than the rest.  In fact, I think I might even be that person for some- hehe.
I also think it helps to give young readers something to remember and react to right away!  Most people do not know that Broccoli is a flowering vegetable, it’s a good way to make sure they’re listening ;)

Growing up on top of a hill in the middle of the english countryside.
Surrounded by seven brothers and sisters, dogs, cats, horses, rabbits, hamsters, guinea pigs and mice

Picture books…  help us to connect, communicate, understand, learn, laugh, remember, feel, express love for one another and form a creative point of view--they are truly limitless.  They must never, ever, ever go away.
I first understood just how powerful a picture book could be when I took a class at RISD called Picture and Word.  I will never forget day one when Judy-Sue, an amazing lady who has inspired me more than anyone I have met, introduced us to a spectrum of wonderful picture books, but finished by reading aloud ‘Annie Bananie’ by Leah Komaiko (Illustrated by Laura Cornell).  By the end of the book she was moved to tears and I was surprised to find that I was too. Taking that class was a truly pivotal moment in my life, and I have not stopped writing, illustrating and collecting picture books ever since.

Making books for young readers… is an honor and a heck of a lot of fun.  Children are the experts when it comes to play and bringing life to one’s imaginings, as a creator you need to keep your wits about you!  
There is also something incredibly special about being a part of someone’s childhood, if you get it right, parts of whatever it is you created stays with them forever.

Sharing the books we love is one way we share about ourselves and connect with each other, so my last prompt for you is...

One book I read and loved recently… Oh!  There are so many!!  Only one?  Hmm, well, if I must- I think I will choose ‘Rude Cakes’ by Rowboat Watson.  It is absolutely bonkers, and really, really funny, I loved it.  When these kinds of books get published I feel relieved to know that there are still enough grown up folks out there with a great sense of humor and the gumption to publish something truly original.

Thank you, Sarah!

Find Penguins Love Colors on...

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