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Hudson’s grandmother ordered this custom story painting for him. She mentioned that he loves vehicles of every kind, so I immediately thought of a hovercraft. Those boats have seemed magical to me since I was a kid watching the British TV series “The Double-deckers.” Hippos are quite fearsome animals in real life, but to me, they have a goofy sweetness. Honk! Honk!
“Nolan James” is the 141st story-painting, and only the second name beginning with “N.” This little boy loves dinosaurs and vehicles. Unfortunately, I couldn’t find a dinosaur that began with “n,” so I chose a newt, instead. When I reached the words “nautical” and “nautilus” in the dictionary, I immediately thought about submersibles and coral reefs (and, of course, sunken treasure)! Ned’s knitted cap is a nod to the great Jacques Cousteau.
Baby Crosby’s grandmother worked with me to plan this very special painting. Each member of Crosby’s family has their own symbol, which I incorporated as constellations. The family members’ initials also appear as letters on each point of the cupola’s weather vane. Crosby’s grandmother and I discussed options for “c” animals, and she settled on a chipmunk for the main character. The clock shows the baby’s time of birth. The white flowers are catalpas, included here because the baby’s father used to walk past two of these beautiful trees on his way to school. I love doing night scenes, and these “c” words added up to a sweet, sleepy-time mini-story!