Sunday, July 29, 2007

Inspiration is all around us!

I have a stash of children's picture books which I browse through continually for creative inspiration. This is one of those books.

Jamela's Dress is a picture book written and illustrated by Niki Daly.
The author/illustrator splashes beautiful watercolors across the pages of this warmly evocative picture book, set in his native South Africa.Jamela's mother purchases a length of costly fabric for a dress to wear to a wedding. Jamela loves the beautiful colors and design.
(Look at the lovely, colorful textiles filling the store's shelves.) After washing the fabric, Mother leaves Jamela in charge of the cloth while it dries. Jamela, however, can't resist playing with the gorgeous fabric.

As she struts through town trailing the fabric like a train, passersby greet her with the refrain "Kwela Jamela African Queen!" She poses for a triumphant photo, but is crestfallen when a boy on a bike accidentally spoils the fabric.

But all's well that ends well. Her photographer friend wins a cash prize for the photo he took of regal Jamela and he replaces the ruined material.

The bond of love between Mother and Jamela is shown in their faces (it also radiates from the warmth of the oranges and yellows in the fabric at the center of the tale).
Mother makes a dress for herself from the new fabric and also a dress for Jamela.

Inspiration is all around us if we take the time to look for it.
Where do you find your creative inspiration?


de vliegende koe said...

I find inspiration in a lot of things like nature, music, movies, packages, books, magazines, clothes, visiting exhibitions, reading blogs like your’s! Lately I have the tendency to see quiltpatterns in everything around me, brick walls, the rythm of plants and flowers in a garden, the way the countryfields are split up.

Marisa said...

What a cute book. I'll have to watch out for a copy of it. My son is really into reading right now, and expects us to read at least 3 books before bed every night!

Baboona said...

I agree with you that inspiration is all around us. I loved too the colorful & printed fabrics :)

amandajean said...

I find inspiration in a lot of of my favorites is from my daughter's little clothes. (she is 1) they have cute little characters that make great softies. And I also get a lot of inspriration from other bloggers, of course.

great illustrations in the book.

Mónica. said...

Hi, I'm from Uruguay.
I hope you visit me.
My blog has a button to translate spanish to english.
I'll see you.

Kiss to you.

melanie said...

love this book - i've never seen it before. thanks for showing it. i love childrens book art.
getting ready to email you:)

tweetey30 said...

Cool inspirations. I have never thought of that even with my afghans.

Debbie said...

Ah, this looks like a beautiful book to add to my collection of children's literature. I'll have to look for it.

Thanks for sharing such a beautiful post.

Helen Hancock said...

I just love it when you do these kind of blogs Joni....great work. TFS!

florence said...

i am glad to find a fellow kids book lover. i find myself these days rushing to the kids section of any bookstore or the library sometimes more than the 'grown up section'. illustrations are just devine and full of quilty inspiration!!