Today's vintage children's picture book, The Owl and the Woodpecker , is a repost from September 2010. Brian Wildsmith's illustrations in this fabulous book are a feast for the eyes. His depictions of wildlife and nature are a riot of textures, layers, patterns and jazzy color.
The story is about a woodpecker and an owl who are at odds with each other because of different sleeping schedules and noise issues. They eventually come up with a solution to solve their problem.
The Owl and the Woodpecker
Illustrated by Brian Wildsmith
Franklin Watts, 1972
Wildsmith's first children's book, ABC, published in 1962, won the Kate Greenaway Medal, Britain's equivalent of the Caldecott Medal. He was also a runner up for the same medal for The Owl and the Woodpecker. In 1994 the Brian Wildsmith Museum of Art was established in Izukogen, Japan (near Tokyo) where 800 of his paintings are on loan to the museum. This museum was designed to look (as much as possible) like Wildsmith's house in Southern France. If I ever get to Japan...
Wildsmith states on his website: “I believe that beautiful picture books are vitally important in subconsciously forming a child’s visual appreciation, which will bear fruit in later life.” I couldn't agree more.
Wish I had time today to add more scans of the book, but I'm hosting Thanksgiving dinner this year and have tons to do. I'll put it on my list of things to do and let you know when they are up.