Words and Pictures

I have just finished building the book dummy for Zando with InDesign. Celebration time! My favorite part is adding the story text to the rough drawings. Though I have planned space for the… Continue reading

Fifty Times

In May, I attended an illustrators’ workshop in Oakland led by an art director at Viking Books. Observations: I should have studied up on the BART train routes. Bay Area attendees, uniformly kind and… Continue reading

Triple Play

I can always tell when my first idea for a story-painting is a flop. I’ll be enthusiastic for a day, just because I had an idea.  “Great job, Brain!” I’ll think smugly.  “Here’s your… Continue reading

Cat and Mouse Detente

I’m working on a picture-book project using the old nursery rhyme “Hickory Dickory Dock” as a springboard. In my version, Jock Tock, the Clock Doc, every inch a professional, and every inch a… Continue reading


“Coffee and Tea” surprised me when I came across it in a compendium of Mother Goose rhymes. I had never heard the rhyme before, even though it would make a dandy jump rope… Continue reading

In Praise of Windows

Third grade. We rode buses to the newly built school on the edge of town. It was our first experience with a seventies “open floor” plan, with only partitions separating classrooms. In spite… Continue reading

The Lower-Case “N”*

Sesame Street made its debut the year I started kindergarten. Far northern Montana got the broadcast out of Canada, so I learned to count in French. Cool! But the coolest part of Sesame… Continue reading

A Donkey’s Hind Leg

So, there I was a couple of months ago, trying to draw the hind legs of a donkey for my new children’s book Zando, a re-telling of the classic folktale, “The Bremen Town Musicians.”… Continue reading

Coffee and Tea (and Roger and Me)

Recently I set myself a challenge: three 16” x 20” Mother Goose paintings. The first was a re-do of a piece I’d done years ago for “Cock-A-Doodle-Doo!” Then I tackled a brand new… Continue reading


I’ve spent the last three weeks thinking about hedgehogs, hassocks, and the brief fashion in 1909-1910 known as the “hobble-skirt” because it effectively bound the wearer’s knees together, causing her to take tiny,… Continue reading