Monday, November 8, 2010

Renata Liwska

I've been meaning to write about Renata Liwska for my other blog about children's books, but something keeps stopping me. It would make sense to post her work there, after all she is a children's book illustrator. Her work is, in a word, adorable. So it would make sense for me to write about it there, but I think her beautiful tiny pencil sketches are simply too perfect to not consider art. She belongs in both blogs, there as illustration and here as art.

I was introduced to Renata's work through The Quiet Book, written by Deborah Underwood. The moment I saw the cover at Barnes and Noble I knew I had to own the book. And I knew that I had to learn more about the artist. The cover drew me in, and the interior illustrations enchanted me further. Her image for "Pretending you're invisible quiet" is one of the cutest things I've ever seen. And all of Renata's work is that cute.

Renata works mostly in pencil, adding color digitally for her printed illustrations. She's illustrated seven books now and all of them are soft and cute. I've been reading Renata's blog (Pandas and Such) for a while and love her posts. Her blog offers glimpses into perfect miniature animals, that spring from her pencil with personalities all their own. The light pencil hash marks create detailed and adorable characters. Plus she's not afraid to show work in progress, something that I love almost more than the finished pieces. She shows off her sketchbook drawings which are enough to make almost any illustrator jealous. Look at her "rough" drawing below. I wish my finished products looked that good.

Renata is a Polish artist who has moved to Calgary to be with her artist husband. The two of them share a website. His work can be found here. I've been slowly trying to buy up Renata's books to add to my collection but I'm also thinking about picking up some of her pencil drawings as well. I'm a huge fan of adorable animals and beautiful art; and they just don't get more adorable or beautiful than Renata's work.

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