Can you recall any of the illustrated books that you read when you were a kid? Many of them, right? The magical world of illustrations that we used to explore through books in childhood is hard to forget. Characters like Winnie the Pooh, Hungry Caterpillar, and The Little Prince are unforgettable, and as much as the creators of these characters deserve the credits for making them everlasting in our memories, the illustrators who designed them also deserve to be endorsed for their efforts and creativity. If they had not designed the illustrations the way they did, the memory of these characters would not have lasted decades.
The artists behind these characters, however, are still unrecognizable names for us. This article is attempting to recognize the creative individuals behind the famous childhood fantasies and adventures. Read on to know the best names who have a share in making your childhoods a fun memory to date?
The famous illustrations of Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory and James and the Giant Peach was a result of a collaboration of Roald Dahl and Quentin Blake. Roald Dahl was the creator of these characters, and Quentin Blake was the one who brings those characters to live visually. The two of them worked together for a good period and produced a good amount of great works. They worked on Fantastic Mister Fox, The Witches, Matilda, the BFG, and many other fantastic children books. All of the characters that Blake illustrated was made to be related to the story, but they also had a personality of their own that sparked even if it was not associated with the storyline.
Bemelmans wrote and illustrated the story of Madeline. The illustrator created a highly impressionistic style of illustrating the characters of the book, and it turned out fabulous. His work has the creativity that can keep the eyes stuck for hours while empowering the imagination to wander in worlds of the art on the paper. The stories of Ludwig Bemelmans have the tendency to present a children classic with the undertones of darker truths of the reality. This aspect of his stories reflects the troublesome childhood of the artist.
Ernest Howard Shepherd
Ernest Howard Shepherd was originally an army officer who served Britain during World War 1. However, he left the army after the war and started working as a political cartoonist at Punch Magazine. While he was working there, he happened to meet A.A. Milne, who is the creator of Winnie the Pooh. Milne wanted to hire an illustrator for a children’s book, and so, he decided to give this young British artist and illustrator a chance.
They first worked on a poetry book named, When We Were Very Young, which succeeded tremendously. Later, Milne sent Shepard to his native lands to observe the place and illustrate them. He asked him to observe his stuffed toys and the area for inspiration for his children’s book project. The characters of the Tiger, Eeyore, Piglet, and the Pooh are all inspired by what Shepard observed during his visit to the hometown of Milne.
Antoine de Saint-Exupery
The philosophical tale of The Little Prince is equally amazing for the kids and their parents. Children enjoy the story while only understanding the adventures of the Little Prince as a well-written story. However, adult readers can grasp the philosophical aspect of the story and perceive the experiences of the little prince from a different angle. This masterpiece of illustration and storyline was created by Antoine de Saint-Exupery, who was a pilot in real life. Remember the beginning of the story where the Little Prince meets a pilot whose plane gets crushed? This scene was inspired by a real-life event that happened to the author of the story.
Beatrix Potter, the author and illustration artist of The Tale of Peter Rabbit, had rabbits as pets when she was a child. She grew up to become a keen observer of nature and chose to study botanical illustrations at the Royal Botanical Gardens. The character of Peter Rabbit was born in one of her letters that she wrote to her former governess’s children. The character was clearly an inspiration from her childhood pets that slipped on to the paper from her subconscious mind. Later she picked the character and decided to write a book for children’s book. The decision proved to be an instant and ultimate success when published.
These are some of the most famous illustrators who creatively delivered powerful characters. They are a vivid inspiration for the present day illustrators who want to create extraordinary works that will become an everlasting memory for the young minds. Following them can bring stories to life and provide the readers with the utmost pleasure.