Episode 13: The Caldecott



  • @davidhohn Thanks for the info I didn't know about that award


  • SVS OG

    Another great episode! I particularly took note of the part about graphic design as a consideration.

    My teachers introduced me to Caldecott books early in life, and I had a librarian relative who had a collection of Caldecotts and other great books in her home and later became very involved in the ALA. I'm pretty sure she has something to do with my interest in illustration to this day--Not to mention that when I attended her middle school, she worked out a deal with the gym teacher so that I could skip volleyball to draw book cover posters!

    P.S. @Lee-White Can't never could!!! I haven't heard that in years! Welcome back to the South.



  • This was very interesting to listen to! I am not sure if somebody else talked about it, but I am curious if the Caldecott award is only for books from U.S or if it is global award 😃


  • SVS OG

    @jonas-zavacky The Caldecott is only for US books, but the NYTimes Best Illustrated Books Award, which is gaining traction, is for books from any country. Those are the main US children's book awards I know about, but there are also others for other countries.



  • @lauraa @Jonas-Zavacky There are other prestigious awards for illustration in other countries. Look earlier in this thread for my initial list. And please add in any that you are aware of. (Maybe this would be a good topic for it's own thread?)


  • SVS OG

    @davidhohn I know there is the Andersen here in Italy and there is the Greenaway for illustration in the UK. The Andersen has various categories, as I understand it, that cover both writing and illustration, various age groups, comics, wordless picture books, and even a digital prize (not sure where the digital part comes in, but I think maybe it's for ebooks). And it seems that authors from other countries are considered, though perhaps for books translated into Italian.

    Here's a link to this year's winners: http://www.andersen.it/premio-andersen-2018-i-vincitori/

    If you want to make another thread about it, feel free to copy and post this!



  • @lauraa Thanks! I updated the list add Kate Greenway and to correct what I initially posted about the Hans Christian Anderson award.



  • @lauraa I, too, was introduced to the Caldecott at an early age. I have a very specific memory of being in the basment of our house with my mom on the couch. She was going to read me the Ox Cart Man by Barbara Cooney, but before starting she she pointed to the gold medal on the front. "You see that, Sarah? That is the Caldecott medal. They give that to the book with the very best illustrations in it."

    I was still quite young (young enough to enjoy my mom reading picture books to me.) But it really stuck, obviously. My mom claims to have intentionally raised an illustrator, though. 😉



  • Fun listening to this podcast.

    I think competitions and awards have an interesting effect on us all. When we win we feel great. When we lose we wonder what we have done wrong and if we are even wasting our time.

    The brief speculation you guys indulged in that there may be a political aspect to the voting is probably true but only to a certain degree.

    Winners almost always have produced great work. The fact, however, is that many losers have also produced great work. Take the monthly competition featured on this forum. Great work always rises to the top. But, great work also seems to go unrecognized.

    Were the zeroes in the last contest all completely unworthy? The danger is in the discouragement those zeroes left in their wake. The deflated pride of all those who garnered zeroes probably stung pretty bad.

    The consolation is in the immense list of those great artists who went unappreciated even while producing magnificent work.

    Vincent Van Gogh is revered today. He is considered to be one of the most influential painters of all time. But, his work received little to no recognition during his lifetime.

    Paul Gauguin was not appreciated until after his death. Today his paintings could sell for as much as $39.2 million a piece.

    Claude Monet is one of the greatest painters of all time. His work was rejected because it went against the traditional style and method of painting of his time.

    And the list goes on.

    To me, the three of you (Will, Lee, and Jake) are incredibly gifted. The fact that you have allowed your knowledge and guidance to be the gentle hand that offers encouragement and guidance to usher the artists in this forum to their next level of accomplishment deserves an award that far surpasses the honor which the Caldecott bestows upon its recipients.

    Perhaps there is no gold medallion or embossed sticker you can put on your mantle or the cover of your next book. Perhaps there is no "bonus" check, no bragging rights, and no red carpet event.

    But, somewhere out there, you have extended your hand to a young artist who needs that helping hand. You have given confidence to a fragile soul bursting with talent but unsure how to nurture it. You have given courage to a young student bullied for an interest in art in a world obsessed with touchdowns and home-runs.

    I hope you all win those awards that define accomplishment.

    But, know that you are already greater than those awards. And your work is as magnificent as those who have won those awards as well as those who walked away with a zero.

    • Larry

  • SVS OG

    @davidhohn Oh, I hadn't even seen that post for some reason, so I went back and looked at it.

    I'm pretty sure that the Italian Premio Andersen and the Hans Christian Andersen award are two different things. The Italian one is given by a children's literary magazine called Andersen and was established in the early 80s. The Hans Christian Andersen was started by IBBY in the 1950s, according to the linked article. The point of confusion, of course, is that Andersen is such a legendary name in children's lit! (So to speak.)


  • Moderator

    @larry-whitler AGREED!!! I second everything you just said. Perfect. 👍👏👏👏😃



  • @larry-whitler I cannot upvote your post enough.



  • Awesome episode. I learn something new from every episode. They should have a Caldecott - Cons.

    Imagine that... just like comic cons, a convention for children's book illustrators and writers where you could promote your own book or artwork.... Maybe we could create an online version of that for fun once a year...

    @Jake-Parker , @Lee-White , @Will-Terry



  • @geoffrey-gordon Check out SCBWI, they have two huge conventions for that purpose every year and many smaller local ones.


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