Count from one to ten in This Little Piggy, or spot eight bright colours in Mary Had a Little Lamb! Two goofy board book twists on classic nursery rhymes from award-winning bookmaker, Jarvis!
From award-winning bookmaker Jarvis, the creator of Alan’s Big, Scary Teeth, Mrs Mole, I’m Home! and Tropical Terry, comes these fresh, very funny first number and colours books – perfect for sharing whilst wriggling tiny toes!
Today we have a very special Q&A with the author-illustrator himself:
Where did the ideas for these books come from?
When I started visiting schools and book festivals, I quickly realised I would have to do more than read my latest book. So I started to write poems (sometimes they go down better than the big stories!). Tanya at Walker Books came to an event I did at the Tate Modern and she saw my poem This Little Piggy (a topsy turvy version of the traditional ditty) and she thought it could be a book. So I went away and very quickly wrote Mary Had a Little Lamb to accompany it. The poems very naturally lend themselves to some early learning concepts, so This Little Piggy has a counting theme and Mary Had A Little Lamb has a colours theme. And that's the story behind them: sometimes school visits, bookshops and festivals can be a great testing ground for new bits and bobs.
|Jarvis on a school visit in China.|
How did you come up with the style for the illustrations?
When I start a book I generally have no idea what it should look like. I'm not the type of illustrator who creates magic from thin air; I have to try things out. I ummm and arrr (and a bit of AARGH) before I settle on a look. Often the story tells me what it should be like; it just takes me time to get there. I love using traditional media and mixing it with digital. I can never seem to get life into solely digital images, so by mixing charcoal and flat fluorescent colours the style came together and felt lively, natural and fun.
How I tell stories...
Often when I create books I think of how I will tell it. Telling stories is perhaps my favourite part of being a children's book maker. I like to try and make storytelling interactive and immersive. These board books are so fun to read aloud, full of silly scenarios, sounds and actions, and I look forward to taking Mary had a Little Lamb and This Little Piggy to schools, festivals and libraries.
You can pick up copies of both of these hilarious books from your local bookshop.
|This Little Piggy being enjoyed by Ada, our very own editor Maria's daughter!|