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Early Childhood Education Shines in the Top End!
The National ECA (Early Childhood Australia) conference was recently held in Darwin from October 5 to 8.
The theme of This is Childhood, the 30th ECA conference, was as National President Ros Cornish said, a reminder to participants of the importance of childhood and how it shapes the ensuing years

Books Illustrated was delighted to participate in the conference in partnership with AISWA ( Australian Independent Schools of Western Australia), and ACLA (Australian Literature Alliance). On our stand we jointly promoted Australian picture books for the very young, and the Australian Children's Laureate, Leigh Hobbs. Leigh presented a keynote address to a very enthused and inspired audience.
There were almost 2,000 enthusiastic delagates from around Australia and South East Asia, many of whom we met on our stand and talked books with.
There was a strong representation from Indigenous centres from remote, regional and urban communities, including practicing artists and teachers and an emphasis on learning through the arts.
Stella overseas keynote speakers included Professor Carla Rinladi (Italy), Claire Warden (Scotland), Maria Aarts (Netherlands) and Dr Chip Donohue (USA)

Congratulations to the ECA, having been so actively involved in this area of education for years - believing in it's vital importance for the foundation for resilient, empathetic and creative citizens of the future. They presented a very full program of memorable sessions. It's exciting to see, in this vital sector, growing attention and acknowledgement given to the importance of play, experiential learning, particularly learning through nature. Long may it last, and draw the focussed attention and financial and governmental support  it deserves.
Federation Square Book Market
Saturday October 22, 11am to 5pm


Guest Illustrator - Andrew McLean 
Andrew will be demonstrating on the big screen in the Atrium between 12noon & 3pm.

He will be joined by author Neridah McMullin to celebrate and promote the new picture book they have created together -
 
Fabish: The Horse that Braved a Bushfire, published by Allen & Unwin. 
This is a powerful picture story based on the true tale of a race horse called Fabish, who saved a group of young horses during the Black Saturday bushfires. Andrew's illustrations are evocative and strong - and wonderful to see 'in the flesh'. So, join us on Saturday October 22.
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Books Illustrated touring exhibitions
This retrospective of Rachel Tonkin's art features key works spanning five decades in book illustration, botanical art, print making and sculpture. It was opened at Dromkeen Homestead in Victoria on October 2 by Lisa Berryman, Publisher, Children's & Young Adult Books, at HarperCollins Australia. The opening  was a great success and a wonderful celebration of Rachel's work.
The exhibition continues at Dromkeen until March 25, 2017.
 
Rachel's incredibly accurate and detailed scenes of Australian life, filled with colour, imagination and humour, create illustrated stories for children & adults to share. A major focus is the art from her own award- winning children's books including Willy & the Ogre, To the Goldfields, When I was a Kid and Leaf Litter.
Particularly touching are two works included at the beginning of the exhibition - one drawn by Rachel when she was four years old and one by her grand daughter, Sienna, who is also four years old!
Two Books Illustrated touring exhibitions are finishing at the end of October 
The Many Story Treehouse exhibition at Childer's Art Space in Bundaberg, QLD 
The Art of Shaun Tan: The Lost Thing - book to film at Hawsksbury Gallery, NSW
New Signed Books and Limited Edition Giclee Prints

Rachel Tonkin is an award-winning author-illustrator who has contributed to more than 100 fiction, non-fiction and picture book titles. Her books echo her interest in recent Australian history and the natural environment all lovingly portrayed in minute and accurate detail with the important ingredients of empathy, honesty and  humour.
She has been published extensively within Australia as well as internationally. Her first picture book, Papa and the Olden Days, written by Ian Edwards, was Honour Book in the Younger Readers category of the 1990 Children's Book Council of Australia (CBCA) Book of the Year Awards. Many other books written and illustrated by Rachel have been shortlisted for the CBCA Awards including, Leaf Litter, Grandpa's Stories and What was the War like Grandma?  
 
                            Picture Book Leaf Litter (paperback edition), signed by Rachel Tonkin - $17.99
                                                    Prints -  495mm (w) x 360mm (h) - $275
Buy Now
Illustration Inspiration
Here's a facinating insight into where inspration for illustration might come from.
Shaun Tan agreed we could share it with you...

'... the Financial Times contacted me because they wanted to write a piece about The Singing Bones and other books of mine, but also asked if I’d like to do a cover for their magazine, suggesting something that related to the refugee crisis in Europe. The deadline was crazy tight but I did have this cat painting which had spun out of a story I wrote for an anthology, Rich and Rare, published by Ford Press (it has a similar drawing). The painting was not originally about the refugee crisis but it worked really well in that context. I wrote a little bit about it in the FT article: ...'
 
https://www.ft.com/content/b60e8c32-64cb-11e6-a08a-c7ac04ef00aa

Because of the interest generated by this illustration of Shaun's on the cover of the Financial Times, he has released a limited edition giclee print of this image - now available for sale from Books Illustrated.


 
Other October events and awards
Leigh Hobbs Children's Laureate 
- Invitation to Talk & Exhibition


Thursday October 20
6.30pm for 7.00pm start
Refreshments prior to the event

Camberwell Girls Grammar School, Camberwell, Vic
RSVP to Anne Devenish, Head of Library, devenisha@cggs.vic.edu.au

In his role as the Australian Children’s Laureate, Leigh Hobbs advocates for the importance of reading, creativity and story in the lives of young Australians. Leigh will discuss his career as a best-selling illustrator, author and artist.
An exhibition of limited edition prints by Leigh Hobbs has been mounted by Books Illustrated and are available for sale. 
 
Christmas in October with Kid's Book Shop

Thursday October 27
 6 30pm - 9 00pm
    
 Abbotsford Convent ,  St Hellier's Street,  Abbotsford Vic

 Q&A sessions with Graeme Base, Judy Horacek & Gus Gordon, a ten-minute presentation on the 'must-have' new books for Christmas and access to consultants to advise on books for your readers. 
Bookings are necessary
Authors on a 'very long signing table' also include: Anna Walker, Jane Godwin, Claire Saxby, Anna Branford, Marc Martin, Felice Arena, Jen Storer & Lisa Stewart.
 
Mr Chicken Roming at SLV
State Library of Victoria’s Play Pod
September - 30 November 2016

Children up to eight years old are invited to join Mr Chicken on his journey through Rome with a range of activities including dressing up, making your own Mr Chicken, and sharing a story about travel or discovery.
Free and open every day (except public holidays) .
Sad news for the Australian Children's Book community

The death of Narelle Oliver on October 5 has saddened all and a memorial service was held at the State Library of Queensland on October 11 which gave the opportunity for a public celebration of her life and work. 
As an author and illustrator Narelle was well-known and celebrated for picture books including The Best Beak in Boonaroo Bay, The Hunt, Sand Swimmers, Mermaids Most Amazing, Baby Bilby where do you Sleep?, The Very Blue Thingamajig, Dancing the Boom-cha-cha Boogie, Home, Twilight Hunt, Fox and Fine Feathers and Don't Let a Spoonbill in the Kitchen!  A mix of fun, fact and fiction, many of these titles have been short-listed for, or won, major national awards and been distributed internationally. Narelle studied education, design and printmaking. A subject when studying children`s literature, piqued her interest in writing and illustrating picture books. Narelle`s was passionate about the natural environment and inventive depicting it using linocut prints and linocut rubbings and often combining other media such as coloured pencil, watercolour, pastel, and photography depending on the feel required for the story.
• • •
This news was even sadder following the dealth of author /Illustrator Kevin Burgemeestre in July. Ann James wrote a tribute to Kevin for his memorial ceremony held on August 7 which is now on the ASA website https://www.asauthors.org/news/vale-kevin-burgemeestre.
 
October with the Australian Children's Laureate

Children's Laureate Leigh Hobbs's  It’s your story Calendar celebrates the month of October with the theme: Draw a Story visit the Laureate website for some great reading suggestions, activities and ideas. 
Mr Punch $359 , unpublished
Limited edition print, 145mm (w) x 59mm (h)
Buy Now
 
 
Books Illustrated is an enthusiastic supporter of the Australian Children's Laureate and the CA's (Copyright Agency) Read Australia Project
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BEHIND THE STUDIO DOOR INTERVIEWS

Lisa Stewart
March 2016

Ilse van Garderen
October 2015

Anna Walker
June 2015

Mark Wilson
April 2015

Shaun Tan
December 2014

Leigh Hobbs
August 2014