On Saturday I visited Messiah College to celebrate their latest original picture book art acquisition from my first picture book BIRD, written by Zetta Elliott. Over the years I have had a few inquiries about the original art for Bird, but I always declined because I wanted to keep the artwork together.
The Ruth E. Engle Collection was a special case for me because it also contains original artwork from first published books by my dearest friends, Jonathan Bean and Taeeeun Yoo and artwork from Lauren Castillo‘s, A Boy, A Mouse, and a Spider, the E.B. White Story. Jonathan, Taeeun, Lauren and I all attended SVA together in the pursuit of our kidlit dreams. It means a lot to know that our work gets to live side by side encapsulating a very special time in our lives as artists.
Dedicated in April 2004, this Collection of original picture book art by award-winning illustrators was begun with gifts given to Friends of Murray Library in memory of Ruth Engle, a charter member who also served on its Board. New artworks are added to the Collection annually, purchased with gifts from Friends and donors. The illustrations–currently 31 in number–reflect a variety of media, styles, and subjects, and include works by illustrators from Australia, China, Mali, Korea and Russia, as well as the USA.