I've been going through all my picture book artwork, trying to select pieces for this summer's exhibition in Tameside. The curator is coming to the studio on Wednesday to help me choose likely pieces, so I thought I'd better get my head round things, sharpish like!
It's proving hard work: there's so much stuff to go through. I'm only considering UK books, but with anything between 15 and 30 drawings each, that's still tons. I thought maybe I'd leave out the older titles, but then I do have a soft spot for poor Grumpy Smudge (above) and Big Bad Wolf:
I store all my artwork wrapped into A1 clear plastic envelopes, a book at a time. Much of it was archived in the eaves, which meant scrawming into very awkward places, and dragging it out (as you can imagine, it's a bit heavy). I needed a cup of tea and a sit down before I had even opened the first package!
Being pastel, my work occasionally gets smudged during the scanning process, Class Three all at Sea was one that suffered badly, partly because of all the black and white chalk involved, so though it's good fun, I will eliminate that.
Books with flaps are often difficult to frame up, because the artwork doesn't make a lot of sense. You have to draw what the page looks like without the flap, so you get strange anomalies in the middle of the illustration, like the page above from Lark in the Ark where the animals will eventually be covered by two spotty duvet flaps.
Both When You're Not Looking! (above) and An ABC of Nursery Rhymes (below) feature all cut-aways (ie illustrations without backgrounds) which makes the original artwork less appealing, because of my pink paper. So they're out of the running too.
I've also got to bear in mind the potential for children's workshops and interactivity linked to the work. Oh dear, oh dear...
I'll let you know what I decide.