Picture Book Writing: Integrating Image with Text

On my way to the NESCBWI conference in Springfield MA. They offered an “Illustration Challenge” to illustrate a passage from the 1899 original text of L. Fran Baum’s The Wonderful Wizard of Oz. I had never read the original, and I was surprised to find so much more to the story than what was featured in the classic 1939 movie. I was particularly enchanted with Chapter 20, The Dainty China Country, so I ran with it. I wanted to create an image that a child would want to look at again and again, as that is how I remember my favorite picture books. Most books now have such brief text, but I love the idea of a child listening to a longer passage while having an illustration to explore. 

Here’s my final entry, followed by some of my research images. Oz-Nancy-Meyers

I was inspired by this illustration from an early edition, as I love the way the text and the image are integrated.oz_9






I have always loved little toy villages–my girls had a sweet Egmont set on loan from a neighbor: little_village_with_train_in_a_net_510903

Erzgebirge miniatures, circa 1927, from Ted Althof’s collection (great little blog with lots of cool villages!):erzgebirgevillage2B








Another Erzgebirge village set I found on an auction site–aren’t the colors charming? I love this stuff!:2497673_1_l

I also perused lots of china patterns (my apologies, as I pasted them onto one file, just to organize my research images):

china patterns reference

And lastly, my neighbor’s sweet pup, Cricket– my inspiration for Toto.IMG_4838


Thanks for visiting!

7 responses to “Picture Book Writing: Integrating Image with Text

  1. Your research is its own inspired walk down a yellow brick road. And your illustration fittingly seems drawn by a wizard. Thanks for the pulling back the curtain to let us see how the magic happens.

  2. Beautiful! I’m here, too. 🙂

  3. Thanks for sharing! Love the illustration, composition, and colors!

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