Wednesday, July 18, 2012


Our Best Friends by Gyo Fujikawa 1977
Gyo Fujikawa was an American-born Japanese book author and illustrator who is known for depicting characters of many different racial backgrounds.  She is one of my favorite illustrators!  She lived from 1908 to 1998, grew up in California and worked in advertising and for Walt Disney Studios.  A very interesting fact about her business savvy is that she was one of the first illustrators to ask for royalties.  She travelled a lot during the war and due to this (she was in New York), she escaped being put into an internment camp, the rest of her family was not so lucky. 

I have many books by her available on my Etsy site: Our Best Friends, Mother Goose, Let's Eat, Oh, What A Busy Day!, and Come Follow Me to the Secret World of Elves and Fairies and Gnomes and Trolls.  (These titles link to their sale listings on my Etsy site.) 

Portraits of her seem very hard to find, but I did find this sketch on LibraryThing:

Sunday, April 15, 2012


Roly-Poly Bear by Dolly Rudeman
Sometimes in my book research I will find information on some really interesting people.  As I was researching this book, Roly-Poly Bear, published by Mulder & Zoon Amsterdam, I discovered Dolly Rudeman.  In my copy of this book, the author is stated as "D. Rudeman" and there is no stated publication year.  There is only currently one other copy like mine on the internet, an early copy (the others have ISBN's, are stated from the 1980s, have glossy covers and have the phrase "Woodland Tales" written on the bottom front cover.)  I am finding it very difficult to get a list of all of her children's book with the original publication years for each - but I will continue my research. <<As always, the titles of the books in my blog are direct links to their listings on my Etsy site.>>

Dolly Rudeman, an amazing fine artist, began her career designing film and other arts posters in the 1920s and 1930s in Holland and France.  She moved to Amsterdam in the 1940s and continued making art and writing children's books.  There is a great book about her poster work by Paul Bastien Annick entitled Pioneer of the Dutch Film Poster Dolly Rudeman 1902-1980. I have always loved Tamara de Lempicka and the 1920s/30s dramatic portrait.  Dolly Rudeman is my new favorite!

>>References<< Doll Rudeman Posters, Dolly Rudeman BioPioneer of the Dutch Film Poster Dolly Rudeman 1902-1980

Tuesday, April 10, 2012


The Little Prince by Antoine De Saint Exupery
1960/61 Harcourt, Brace & World
Recently, I have found some very beautiful copies of both The Little Prince (on left), and Le Petit Prince (French language, below.)  It is always exciting when you know you have found a jewel, and I have been lucky enough to find many lately.  I don't know if I have gotten into this very much, but books came to me, not the other way around.  As a designer, there are many things that inspire me, so I guess my radar is always up, but when it comes to vintage/ antique books, I truly feel that they came into my life as a calling, as equally as art and design. >>As always, book titles on my blog link to their listings on my Etsy site<<

I first read the French version of Le Petit Prince in my French language class in middle school.  It is a classic for many reasons, although I believe any book that is considered a classic, is deemed so more due to intuition and emotion than to any in-depth critique of literary style, cultural context, design elements, etc.  In other words, you know when you know - and I knew when I was 13, before any discussion or critique, that this particular work of art stood out and transcended the categorical bounds of "children's book."

Le Petit Prince by Antoine De Saint Exupery
1957, nrf Gallimard
The copy above is an English version by Harcourt, Brace & World.  Before circa. 1961, they were known as Harcourt, Brace and Company and are the second rights holders (as of 1948) to this title after the original publisher: Reynal & Hitchcock, Inc. (who published the first editions in 1943.)  This copy is most likely from 1960/61 because of the publisher name and the $3.75 price located on the dust jacket flap.

The copy to the left is a French version published by nrf Gallimard, in 1957 (they began printing ediitons in 1945.)  This publisher was the first contracted publisher for this title, but there was confusion and Reynal & Hitchcock, Inc. were righted the publication of the first editions.  The interesting thing about this French version, is the wealth of printing information stated throughout the book (mostly in the back few pages.)  I will translate here the French printing statements located in the book:
"Ten thousand numbered copies between 45,051 and 55,050 were released after the original by Paul Bonet.
Copy 48,985."


"All printings from the Paul Dupont presses in Paris were finished on December 1st 1957.
Edition: #6022
Impression: #6641
Legal Deposit: 1947
Printed in France"

>>Refernces: Rassemblement du Petit Prince