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Endpapers: A New Beginning

Melanie Marder Parks has illustrated 17 of the Elm Creek Quilts novels by Jennifer Chiaverini. There are 20 books in the series and the publisher decided to add illustrated endpapers with the fourth book. I asked Parks about reviving the art of endpapers in this way.

daily heller 2-13-14

New Jersey’s Got Talent, Ya Know!

Those of us who reside east of the Hudson and west of the East rivers are grateful we don’t live anywhere else. Yet, despite all the Jersey put downs, its not such a bad place. In fact, aside from bridge lane closings and the incredible number of Jersey mayors on trial or in prison for graft and corruption, the Garden State has a fair concentration of very talented illustrators, a number of whom appear in an exhibition organized by Chris Gash, and feature the following Jerseyians.

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The Fine Art of Tattooing

Illustrators and fine artists test their crafts on a different kind of medium—skin. These artists are working in top shops and applying their skills to tattoo artistry.

daily heller 2-12-14

Illustrator Erik Blegvad Remembered

Illustrator Erik Blegvad passed away in January 2014. He illustrated more than one hundred books, including seven written by his wife, Lenore. His son, the illustrator and cartoonist Peter Blegvad sent along “Memories of Erik Blegvad,” a celebration of the man and his work.

daily heller 2-5-14

When Kids Could Read Better

I’m not trying to be sarcastic, but these are difficult times for literacy. Despite the lower overall national literacy rate in 1916, a year before the U.S. entered the Great War, literate kids had a lot more to be literate about. St. Nicholas: Scribner’s Illustrated Magazine for Girls and Boys premiered in November, 1873. Roswell Smith, co-founder of the publishing company Scribner & Company, hired Mary Mapes Dodge (author of “Hans Brinker, or the Silver Skates) to edit the new children’s magazine.

daily heller 2-4-14

Hard News in the Icon Age

Sylvain Boyer founded icons times, which he claims “is quite possibly the first iconographic news aggregator.” It provides a new way to read the news by representing each breaking story as an informative icon. Icons times presents a series of icons evolving over time and topics, creating a new language and a new way to read news. I was intrigued by Boyer’s concept and skeptical of its viability, so I asked him to explain:

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19 Striking Book Covers of 2014

We know, we know. You should never judge a book by its cover. But looking at this set, it’s damn hard not to. Here are 19 of our 2014 favorites that are in stores or on the way.

daily heller 1-31-14

Sketching as Meditation: Drawing on Rome

My student, Tim Cohan, wrote a lovely story about his experiences at the SVA Masters Design Workshop in Rome called “Drawing Inspiration from Rome.” The workshop is currently accepting participants for Summer 2014, and I thought it a propitious time to share his story.