Friday 11th of September, 2015
The Adult Program of the StoryArts Festival Ipswich had an amazing line-up of Australia’s finest creators and advocates of children’s literature on Friday morning.
Ann James and Ann Haddon from Books Illustrated presented: Bologna & Beyond giving an insight into how Books Illustrated promotes Australian picture books and their creators at the Bologna’s Children’s Book Fair in Italy over the last seven year.
Prints and books from this year’s Hello! from Australia were on display throughout the festival. Books Illustrated also has a fantastic website.
Next was the Sound of Picture Books.
Lesley Reece from the Literature Centre in partnership with composer/ illustrator Matt Ottley and author Danny Parker talked about their multi-modal experience Tree. We were able to feel this picture book and connect to it at a new level while watching the DVD. This was repeated by the DVDs Parachute and Home & Away (written by Marsden), this last one creates raw emotion in the listeners/viewers and should be viewed in every high school.
The authors and illustrators panel focused on the collaborative process between author and illustrator.
Janeen Brian and Ann James talked about their collaboration on I’m a Dirty Dinosaur and I’m a Hungry Dinosaur. I’m a Dirty Dinosaur was inspired by a teacher librarian who highlighted the need for books with rhyme for very young children. Ann found the inspiration for her art medium, dirt, at her home in the country and her dirty dog and shared some footage of her painting I’m a Dirty Dinosaur, showing her dipping her brush in the mud and painting away.
Mark Greenwood and Terry Denton talked about their collaboration and travels for their picture book Jandamarra. They gave us an insight into the rewards and challenges of telling this story and gave us an insight into their next book called Boomerang and Bat which tells the amazing story of the first Aboriginal cricket team. It was fun to see these two friends fight over the mic.
Danny Parker and Matt Ottley talked about their collaboration on Tree, Parachute and upcoming projects. Danny shared their story of how they first met and how this book came to be published in quite an unconventional manner.
Matt Ottley says that ‘When picture books work well, they are like opera’ . He also shared his thoughts and concerns on the conservative nature of the Australian publishing industry.
Yvonne Mes, Author of Meet Sidney Nolan and Oliver’s Grumbles