FCB presents Molly Bang

Last night, the Foundation for Children's Books hosted a talk with renowned author/illustrator Molly Bang. This is part of a series called 'Conversations with... Author/Illustrator Series' held at Boston College's Chestnut Hill campus. It was quite easy to get there, and parking is free. Check out their website for more information on upcoming events!

Usually before I see an illustrator talk I am familiar (or make myself familiar) with their body of work. While I had heard of many of Molly's books and seen the covers, I admit, I have not read any of them. Her website is really informative and well worth a visit, see link above. After last night's talk I have a long list to fill at my library...

She was wonderful to listen to, with a huge amount of passion for her books but also a gentleness and sincerity in her responses to both audience and moderator questions. Just listening to her talk about her books, you understand the love she has poured into each of them. In recent years, Molly has published a few science books for children, having been raised by scientist parents and seeing the real lack of interest in science in America's youth. She expressed disappointment that they are not selling like her fictional picture books. She talked a little bit about her book for adults, 'Picture This' which looks like a great resource for any visual artist. That's at the top of my list to read first! I feel like I used to have much more dynamic and powerful compositions and I'm losing that quality to my new work, something to do with trying to make my work more complex...

I'll end on this note: Opportunities like the above are so important for me. In part because they inspire me and fuel me to create. In another part because they are part of this profession, and learning curve of what it means to be an illustrator. Even if your dream is in a holding pattern, get out there and participate! Join SCBWI, seek out artist critique groups and events like this. There are more things going on than I have time for, I just try and pick the closest and most relevant.