Remember when Mary Blair did artwork for Little Golden Books?
Or Eyvind Earle? Or John Hench? Or Retta Scott Worcester? Some of the Disney animation greats not only worked on the films, but also on the adaptations for Little Golden Books. Today that tradition continues with artists from the studios often being asked to contribute to those little treasures. But now Disney-Hyperion Publishing is continuing that tradition in a new way! More than adapting books from the movies or shorts or extending the story of a film, Disney artists are getting to create their own imaginative works for children including the newest offering – Holly’s Day at the Pool.
Title: Holly’s Day at the Pool
Author: Benson Shum with Carol Arrow
Age: 4-8 (or for fans of the artist showcase series)
Publisher: Disney-Hyperion, an imprint of Disney Publishing Worldwide
Genre: Children’s picture book
Holly’s Day at the Pool joins a select group of books which have been illustrated by such talented artists as Lorelay Bove and Andy Harkness. Benson Shum (who has worked on such films as Frozen, Big Hero 6, Zootopia, and Moana) brings the colorful pink hippo Holly to life. And while the story is definitely cute, the art really shines. I can’t help but be drawn to the beautiful choices Benson makes in choosing how to draw and color the book. Holly is the perfect salmon color for a hippo (who are not known to be salmon-colored). The backgrounds contrast smoothly and brightly with the foreground. The lettering is the right compliment to the art and adds to the overall story. Just a complete book from beginning to end.
The story concept is also by Benson with words by Carol Arrow and is about how Holly’s imagination gets the better of her when she imagines all that might go wrong with a swim in the pool. It only takes a bit of inspiration from her little sister for her to overcome her fears and save the day! Overall, a cute story about caring for your siblings and about gentle parenting – and doing the right thing despite your fears. I love how Disney is once again utilizing the creative talents of their artists in new endeavors like this! Holly’s Day at the Pool is already out now in local bookstores and online at retailers like Amazon.com.