Bryan Collier is coming to Kutztown. The ‘Kid Lit’ in the headline is shorthand for “The 19th Annual Kutztown University Children’s Literature Conference” on April 1, 2017.
Collier is a stellar illustrator, best know for his vibrant collage work focusing on the African-American experience, such as Uptown and Rosa. He’s won The Coretta Scott King Honor and Ezra Jack Keats Awards. Trombone Shorty, image below, is a 2016 Caldecott Honor winner. Collier is only one of the four award-winning authors and illustrators coming this year.
We’ll see Caldecott Medal winning illustrator/author Lauren Castillo. In a starred review, Publisher’s weekly praised the artwork above- “Castillo conjures security with her trademark warm colors and solid black contours .” Castillo is a graduate of NYC’s School of Visual Arts and, I think, she shares a Harrisburg studio space with Jonathan Bean, who was a hit at last year’s conference.
Rounding out the Keynote speakers is nonfiction writer Deborah Hopkinson. She is the author of over 50 books ranging from picture books to middle-grade history titles.
Besides hearing these superstars, conference attendees have a chance to join in informal chats with Aubry Joi Cohen and me.
Aubry Joi Cohen is a 2014 grad of Kutztown University’s Communication Design Dept.She did a great job illustrating Seek and Find Animals Around the World while keeping her day job. Aubry is currently a designer for Artskills, an educational art firm specializing anything related to posters: poster markers, poster lettering, and decorative items like stickers. Aubry will talk about how her first book came about. She was contacted by Auzou, a French children’s book publisher, because of her artwork online.
Lastly, I will be there. Toon Books has declared my books are a series,- the Giggle and Learn series. My latest is Something’s Fishy. Publisher’s Weekly wrote: “Like McCloskey’s We Dig Worms! and The Real Poop on Pigeons!, this overview of fish big and small (mostly small) takes an irreverent approach to its subject.”
All the books will be sold at a conference discount (20% off) at the KU bookstore through April 1. The full schedule for the Saturday conference is here. A number of activities will be available free to the KU student and faculty community on Friday, March 31, info here.
KU students may attend the full conference Saturday for a reduced fee of $10.00! You can show up Saturday with your student ID and register by 8:30am in the Student Union Building.
All art in this post ©the original artist.