Ingpen’s Inkpen


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Children’s book illustrator Robert Ingpen has brought to life classic children’s novels such as Alice in Wonderland, The Secret Garden, The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, Robinson Crusoe, Treasure Island and Peter Pan.

His life’s work has now been commemorated in a new book, Wonderlands.

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“You are born with two brains,” says Robert Ingpen. “The main brain is the one that your parents insist upon you using for the rest of your life so you can get a life; the other one is the one you use yourself when you want to go off into the forest and do your dreaming.”


 In 1986, Ingpen became the only Australian to win the Hans Christian Andersen award for illustration,

After illustrating more than 100 books, he has developed a slightly unconventional collaborative style.

“When it comes to finding a way to illustrate great writers like Robert Louis Stevenson and Lewis Carroll and people like that who have been long dead, you have to engage your reserve brain,” he says. “All this time I’ve been entertaining, and having great deceased writers [over] to stay in my imagination. To have Charles Dickens to stay was a chore, because he was so curious about everything; you couldn’t have a phone call without him wanting to know who it was and what was going on.”

(more from Stephanie Convery)



Hidden Treasures

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Art UK

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Dr. Bendor Grosvenor and Jacky Klein seek out the work of some of the biggest names in art, lying hidden in local museums and country houses all across Britain.

Britain’s publicly owned art collection contains over 210,000 paintings. But at any one time, over 80% of these are locked away in storage. Among this secret treasure trove of mystery paintings are some of the finest works of art the public owns – but didn’t know they had. There might even be some priceless Old Masters lost in the vaults.

Acorn TV

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Raphael found!


Exciting news:

The rights to his first graphic novel, Zita the Spacegirl, was picked up recently by Fox Animation for a movie and there is hope that one day Hatke’s brave characters will make it to the big screen.

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Ben Hatke

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As many parents know, all kids come into the world ready to draw, but as the years pass each child reaches a point where they make a choice — to draw or not to draw. It was never a question for comic artist and arrow enthusiast Ben Hatke, who doodled his way through many a grade school and high school class, filling the margins with grand adventures.

His dad was an architect at Purdue University in Indiana and his mom took him and his two sisters to the library regularly. When the young boy discovered newspaper comics such as Calvin and Hobbes, it was love at first sight. more

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Watch   the book trailer!

Mary II

This familiar face, seen again and again, is Queen Mary II (Stuart) of England. (1662-1694)

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The portrait above was painted by Sir Godfrey Kneller for William III and Mary II in 1690.

Mary II (1662 – 1694) was joint monarch of England, Scotland, and Ireland with her husband and first cousin, William of Orange, from 1689 until her death. William and Mary, both Protestants, became king and queen regnant following the Glorious Revolution, which resulted in the adoption of the English Bill of Rights and the deposition of her Roman Catholic father, James II and VII. William became sole ruler upon her death in 1694. Popular histories usually refer to their joint reign as that of “William and Mary”.

Mary wielded less power than William when he was in England, ceding most of her authority to him, though he heavily relied on her. She did, however, act alone when William was engaged in military campaigns abroad, proving herself to be a powerful, firm, and effective ruler.

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Mary II’s Legacy

William and Mary are depicted (above) on the ceiling of the Painted Hall, Greenwich, by Sir James Thornhill.


Mary endowed the College of William and Mary (in the present day Williamsburg, Virginia). She is credited with influencing garden design, with popularizing blue and white porcelain, and the keeping of goldfish as pets.[81]

The Royal Collection

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The Somewhat True Adventures of Sammy Shine

by Henry Cole


Sammy, a clever pet mouse, lives a contented life until his owner’s brother kidnaps him to serve as pilot for a remote-controlled plane. Then his adventures begin.

The plane gets away from the boy and crashes into distant woods, where Sammy encounters a community of mice, including a helpful young female, Phoebe. After his damaged plane—his only means to get back home—goes missing, he sets out to find Goggles, a raccoon rumored to have great ideas but who can only be reached after a long journey. Along the way, Sammy’s joined by a crow that can’t fly, a newt, a shrew, and finally, Phoebe. Their quest is threatened by an evil weasel and his wily band of rats. Characters are only thinly developed, and the story is just mildly suspenseful. It is so brief (despite page count) the potential dangers simply don’t get expanded upon enough to feel truly threatening. But the illustrations lift this effort above the pack. Cole’s soft, delicately shaded black-and-white artwork appears on nearly every spread, with numerous double-page spreads. The realistic woodland scenes populated with slightly anthropomorphized creatures beg for closer study.

Although no one will doubt the eventual outcome, since Sammy is way too cute to fail, this amusing tale will serve well as an early chapter book or read-aloud. (Fantasy. 7-10)


Also by Henry Cole:

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Garden Art

The Sleeping Bird Topiary you can observe from the pictures is made by Claude Ponti. Although this one is located in the city of Nantes in France botanical garden, if your residence gives you the luxury of a big yard, nothing can stop you from attempting to fashion one such topiary.

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Peabody Faux Boxwood Garden Dog