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Sheep Really Do Say BAA!

I had a great and busy time, signing books at the NYS Sheep and Wool Festival this weekend. On my way to the booth, I passed the livestock area where I saw sheep of just about every variety (and I really regret not taking pictures, for they were adorable, but I was quite rushed.) Here’s a cute one with dreadlocks courtesy of wikimedia commons:Dreadlocked_sheep

The sheep were really vocal. I loved hearing them, though I am not so sure they were all that happy to be there. They bleated with deep, guttural, mournful tones, sounding like a bunch of old men moaning. I’ve heard sheep before, of course, but maybe not to this extent. And it struck me that they really do say BAA! 🙂

On Saturday I sat next to Susanna Leonard Hill, signing her wonderfully clever book, Can’t Sleep Without Sheep, among others. Her lovely daughter, who was visiting from college, was there helping out. We barely got to talk or take a picture of us together, because we were so busy and I had to leave an hour after Susanna arrived. Still it was great to see her again and to meet her daughter for the first time. Here’s a quick shot I snuck in of the two of them:Susanna and Kate

On Sunday it was equally busy, until mid afternoon when the traffic slowed down, and then I got to meet Nancy Shaw, author of  Sheep in a Jeep and many other  great children’s books. I remember back in the late eighties, before I was published,  when I used to take hoards of picture books out of my local libraries to study and learn from, Sheep in a Jeep  was one that I had really enjoyed for its fun rhymes, humor and  brevity. It seemed so simple, yet there was(is) a lot to it. I learned from that book how effective a few carefully chosen words can be. And I know now how hard that is to execute!IMG_3509

It was also nice to meet Nancy’s husband who was there helping her out.

Hmmm…now where was my helper? 🙂

And last but not least I’d like to share the contest  winner’s sheep drawing!

The winner is Caty, and she and her family came to my storytime. She kept smiling shyly and afterward  approached me with her drawing. I had only asked for a sheep wearing a hat and scarf but she drew a whole intricate scene! Isn’t it great? (click to enlarge.)Sheep winner

 Congratulations, Caty! Keep drawing! You are a wonderful artist!

And finally, a big thanks to the good people at Merritt Bookstore who made this event possible!

About the author

Iza Trapani I am a children's book author and illustrator, fan of Mother Goose and Dr. Seuss, lover of big dogs, aspiring yodeler. When not in my studio, I spend time outdoors and have climbed over many a mountain to see what I could see.

22 Responses to Sheep Really Do Say BAA!

  1. Cathy says:

    Wow Caty – what a fabulous illustration. Congratulations! You know a lot about how wool is turned into wearable fashion!

    Great post Iza, love the photos and all the fun that you shared from the Sheep & Wine…I mean WOOL festival. Baaaaaah!

    • Iza Trapani says:

      Haha, Cathy! Yes it was a wooly good time. Wine would have been nice, but then I could have made some baaad mistakes in my inscriptions.
      Isn’t Caty’s drawing great? She certainly does understand the process.

  2. Congrads, Caty! What a funtastic illustration. It’s so lively and fun.

    Sounds like you had an awesome time, BBF and I loved the pic of Susanna and her daughter. Great post as usual!

  3. jama says:

    A wild and wooly good time to be sure. Fun post with great photos. LOVE Caty’s drawing!

  4. The sheep you posted looks a lot like the one I saw but didn’t take a picture of because my hands were full! So cute 🙂 And wow! You got a winner for your drawing! I’m going to need to hear email details about how that came about! Congratulations to Caty for an amazing drawing!

  5. I’m so envious! Sounds like a really fun event. I love your sheep photo–and Caty’s picture showed great talent! (I want a sheep very baa-aa-dly!)

  6. Rhythm says:

    What a great gathering! All the sheep ladies!! Looks like a fun time was had by all!

  7. I love all these photos, Iza! How great to see you and Susanna (almost) together. What a fun event. And Caty did an outstanding job. All I can say is – BAAAAAtastic!

  8. Iza, Caty’s illustration is so cute.
    I received my copy of Baa, Baa Black Sheep and I loved it. The story and illustrations are wonderful! 🙂

  9. Glad that made you wooly warm. 🙂
    Have you written posts on how large illustrations should be for PB’s and do you scan your artwork? If so, what size scanner should one use?
    Thanks Iza. 🙂

  10. Izatrapani says:

    Tracy, that is great. I am always looking for blog ideas! I will do that. Briefly, I will tell you that I work book size. Most of my books are roughly 8. 5 x 10 inches trim size. Interior double page spreads would be 17 inches wide x the 10 inches in height. I have a standard scanner 8.5 x 11 so I scan one page at a time and then join them in photoshop. But if I want a good, high res scan of the double spreads, I will have it done at a copy shop. But these scans are just for me to have before I send my original art to my art director who handles the design and scans for the book. Hope this helps! Ask me more!

  11. Iza, thank you. In a blog post could you also address what size someone should do if they don’t know what size a publisher might want? And is it standard practice to send the originals? And anything else you can think of. You could do a series of posts. Thanks again, Iza! 🙂

    • Iza Trapani says:

      Tracy, just to clarify, do NOT send original art when querying/submitting. Once you have a publishing deal- then (assuming you don’t work digitally) you will need to send the originals for scanning.

      • Hi Iza,
        Thank you for clarifying. I don’t use Photoshop but I have another program I use with Windows 7. Just knowing I don’t have to send in the originals make me sigh with relief. Also knowing I can join two illustrations for the two page spread is awesome information.
        I look forward to a future blog for illustrators.
        Thanks again,

  12. I am so baaaaaaaad for not getting over here sooner. I’ve kept this in my inbox so I wouldn’t miss out on a wild and woolly post!
    Thanks for sharing the pictures. It was fun seeing you and your fellow “sheep” story authors. I love each of your books and have read all three numerous times!
    Caty did such a great job! Really, really cute!

    • Iza Trapani says:

      No worries at all, Penny! You have had big news and I am sure you are off floating on a cloud somewhere.Thanks for stopping by!

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