torsdag 26 april 2012

Så föddes Under täcket, del 1

Det började med en lek. Ungarna tycker om att klä ut sig, och en helt vanlig busig vardag tog jag bilder av dem. De var så vackra att jag testade rita dem. Och det blev till ...

... det här. Bilden fanns i min portfolio, och den fastnade förlaget för. Då fanns ingen text, inte ens en minsta lilla tanke om vad det kunde handla om. Mina egna texter (en pottbok på rim och en lång harang om en liten flygande klown) var inga vinnare direkt, och jag fick rådet att försöka hitta någon som kan skriva. Det jag inte visste var att den där någon fanns så nära som mitt emot mig vid frukostbordet.

För att glädja er alla publicerar jag nu en bild och ett rim från den refuserade boken. Just det här rimmet är skrivet av min fantastiska syster Liisa Mendelin. Det var jag och två syrror som skapade rim på löpande band. Kul hade vi, men så värst bra var de nog inte...

Loppan Lisa hoppar fram
Men var är alla vänner?
Jo på dasset sitter de
Skynda dit, det händer!

Briefly in English to my readers in India, Oman, Pakistan and Australia: The story behind the book Under täcket/Peiton alla (Under the cover) started from a picture I had in my portfolio, the one with a girl above. I had no story, and the other stories I had written myself weren´t that good. Bad actually. Totally useles. I was asked if I could find a writer, and the editor promised to look at the text if I were to find a writer. I tried to fish among my journalist pals, but there was no story to be found there eighter. Then one evening I got an sms from my husband Anssi telling me he had a story for me. First I was horrified: what if it´s bad, how can I tell him? But it was wonderful, and it was accepted quite quickly, and all of a sudden I had a story to draw from. (Now when the catalogue is out and he´s listed there as a writer he is a bit chocked, because he hasn´t gone through all this submitting, waiting, trying, being rejected, submitting, waiting, trying-stuff at all.)

tisdag 24 april 2012

Det bidde en bok

Omslaget. Tänk att vi gjorde det: en helt riktig barnbok. Texten är skriven av min fantastiska Anssi Hurme, och illustrationerna har jag gjort. Den kommer ut i höst på Schildts & Söderströms på både svenska och på finska (Peiton alla). Nu byter jag språk på den här bloggen eftersom det blir ytterst konstigt att skriva på engelska om den här boken. Sorry, mina tretton läsare i Sri Lanka, Pakistan och Oman.

Det var i maj i fjol som vi fick klartecken för texten. Då fanns bara två bilder och lite samlade tankar om hur det kunde se ut. Så det har tagit nästan ett helt år att, vid sidan av mitt vanliga jobb, planera och förverkliga bilderna.

Omslaget är gjort av grafikern Emma Strömberg på Schildts & Söderströms.

Jag ska lägga ut lite skisser och versioner vartefter här på bloggen.

This is our book! Lots of work and lots of joy, but now it´s out of my hands. Text by my husband Anssi Hurme, illustrations by me. Published by Schildts & Söderströms this fall in both Swedish and Finnish. I´m now switching language to Swedish on this blog, because it doesn´t make much sense to write about the book in English.

söndag 22 april 2012

This is not a gardening blog

Tomato. Today I´ve spent some time at the allotment, digging in the muddy soil. Back home I made some newspaper pots for my tiny tomato and cucumber plants. Then I noticed a good way to mark the pot!

lördag 21 april 2012

Slow, slow

Testing scraperboard. This is not my thing. Very, very slow, and every mistake is visible. I like the way you can create light and show shapes of objects, but hey, this is just too slow.

tisdag 17 april 2012

I found the rug!

Almost done. The box and its inhabitants is almost done. I have some painting to do (the wall on the right hand side is going to be a forest) and the toy chest has to be white. In may the box will travel to Vihti miniland and be exhibited there for the summer.

Notice the rug: I finally found it!

The bed, chest and the chair are from miniland. The workshop there last Saturday was really nice. I expected adult dollhouse creators, but got a really nice bunch of 8-12-yearold girls and a few adults instead. I must say the girls made super nice paintings for their own doll houses; horses, tractors, flowers, abstract colour compositions... (Tytöt, jos haluatte voitte lähettää sähköpostitse valokuvia hienoista tauluistanne, niin pistän ne tänne!)

måndag 16 april 2012

This is not a cake blog

Three little piggies. This is a birthday cake. I try to resist to post things that have nothing to do with illustration, but sometimes I can´t resist...

måndag 9 april 2012


On Saturday, April 14 at 2 p.m. I will be creating tiny paintings at Vihti miniland with a group of dollhouse creators.

onsdag 4 april 2012


Contemporary children´s illustration. Yesterday I went to see the exhibition Metka matka by The Association of Finnish Illustrators at Päivälehden museo in Helsinki. It´s a collection of 18 children´s book illustrators, all of them exhibiting three originals from one chosen book. I would have liked to see a bit more variation, one book is just one book and many of the illustrators have worked in different styles with different books. And illustrators develop, it´s interesting to see early work and recent work side by side. For example Salla Savolainen´s most known charachter  is Tove Appelgren´s Vesta-Linnea, but at the exhibition she shows three woodcuts from Sinisen kärpäsen sirkus (the Circus of the blue fly), which are beautiful and made with great care, but at least younger visitors don´t relate to these images in the same way as to a familiar figure. They want Vesta-Linnea.

My own personal favourite at the exhibition is Lena Frölander-Ulf and her black&white illustrations to Mörkerboken/Hämäräkirja (The Dark book or Darkness book or whatever it could translate to). They really are as good in real life as in the book. Some illustrations in the show are combined of many different layers glued on top of eachother, some have spots or lines that are removed before they end up in the book. And some have curled up water color paper. But Frölander-Ulfs work is neat and clean. I suspect she works in a secret laboratory with air tight doors and efficient doughnut detectors.

The exhibition also has a section for children, where they can walk inside the illustrations, see a vacuum cleaner in the roof and, best of all, draw on the walls, on a flower wallpaper.

So, go-go-go! The exhibition is free of charge, but I highly recommend to invest the ten euros the catalogue costs. It has short interviews (in Finnish) with all the illustrators, about their relation to childhood images, about their inspiration, work and relation to the text.