This, to me, is a really neat category. Art is what makes a picture book. As a writer, I love words and know that a story hangs it all together. But the art is what makes a picture book work. Here are some books in this category that I like. Some of the links are “affiliate links” to Amazon.com, which means that Amazon pays me a few pennies if you end up buying the book through the link here. Your price is the same whether you use the affiliate link or find the book another way. The pennies do not influence my judgment. I only include books I’ve read and recommend. You’re free to click, look on Amazon and not buy.
The Scraps Book: Notes From A Colorful Life by and about Lois Ehlert, one of the most accomplished authors and designers of picture books.
Alan Say is a noted artist for children’s books and has won the Caldecott Medal and praise from many critics. Drawing From Memory is his autobiography. The text is for teens, rather than younger readers.
Eric Carle is one of the giants in the field of picture book illustration. Carle’s book, The Artist Who Painted a Blue Horse, is about an artist from whom he drew inspiration: German artist, Franz Marc (who did indeed paint a blue horse).
Under the Spell of the Moon: Art for Children from the World’s Great Illustrators edited by Patricia Aldana is absolutely beautiful. Thirty-two illustrators from all around the world each donated a picture for this book to support the International Board on Books for Young People. Each illustration is based on a childhood text that was meaningful for the illustrator. Suggested for ages 4-9 but I think it works for all ages.
Ted Macaluso writes books for kids that make art more fun. His book, Vincent, Theo and the Fox, is a fictional adventure about the young Vincent van Gogh that teaches about growing up and learning from failure (for ages 4 – 10). He lives in Reston, Virginia with his wife, son, and kind hearted dog. Find out more at tedmacaluso.com.
Text © 2016 by Ted Macaluso.