[DWJ] London Meet

Minnow minnow at belfry.org.uk
Fri Jun 9 19:37:40 EDT 2006

>I'm pretty sure illustrators don't usually see the ms, even if they
>wanted to.  I feel bad for the artists sometimes; surely they'd  like it
>if their pictures better matched the stories.  Then again,  some cover
>pics really look like the artist ought to find another  vocation.
>  E.

One set of covers that was done with full knowledge of the contents of the
books was for the trade-paperback Dalemark quartet from Mandarin in 1993.
The artist read them all, and then did a panorama that continues from one
book to another -- one can't get the full effect without having two copies
of each book to lay out next to each other, because it wraps round to the
back of each, and the order isn't quite right because it goes from the back
of *Cart & Cwidder* through *Drowned Ammet* and *The Spellcoats* to the
front of *The Crown of Dalemark*, but they're definitely related to each
book at least to some extent, and don't get anything *wrong*.

DWJ was allowed to see and approve them before they were used, too, as she
has been for some (mostly English) editions of various books since.

OTOH, Rosemary Sutcliff wasn't allowed any say even in who *illustrated*
some of her books, and her comment on Charles Keeping's illustrations was
"very clever, but ugly".  She loved what C. Walter Hodges had done for her
earlier work because he always put in what was in the text, and lots of
detail, and she felt that was what children wanted, rather than pictures
they might think they could have done for themselves.

The idea of a book as being a thing produced by a team of people working
together seems strangely old-fashioned, doesn't it?


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