I travelled back home to Florida for a friend's wedding last week. While there, I took the opportunity to look through the Jamieson Memorial Library, and found our old copies of Oh, What a Busy Day! and Come Follow Me. They were even more beautiful than I remembered:
Look, my brother and I shared! What good siblings.
I remember playing "sandwich" quite a bit as a kid- perhaps inspired by this book? We'd lie between two pillows, and tickle the other person whenever a new ingredient was added to the sandwich. Condiments required blowing on the stomach, raspberry-style. Oh, and I think we even "pressed" the sandwich, panini-style, by sitting on the person.
And I think this one is just stunning. My crummy scan does not do it justice (O, how I miss you, high-quality flatbed scanner from my previous job!)
I can't find too much information about Gyo Fujikawa, which I find surprising, as it seems like she was groundbreaking in many ways. According to her Wikipedia profile, "Fujikawa is recognized for being the earliest mainstream illustrator of picture books to include children of many races in her work, before it was politically correct to do so." A New York times article says that her family was interned in an Arkansas relocation camp during World War II. She sounds absolutely fascinating, and hopefully I'll be able to find more information about her. She had this quote in the Wikipedia article:
"In illustrating for children, what I relish most is trying to satisfy the constant question in the back of my mind--will this picture capture a child's imagination? What can I do to enhance it further? Does it help to tell a story? I am far from being successful (whatever that means), but I am ever so grateful to small readers who find 'something' in any book of mine."
What a beautiful quote- and what a nice thing for me to keep in mind as an illustrator, when it's easy to get sidetracked by thoughts like "hooks", "marketability", or "the next big thing". I certainly found more than "something" in her books, and I'm grateful that she created them.