CM . . .
. Volume XIII Number 2 . . . .September 15, 2006
Inspired by his love of horses and appreciation of authentic native dress, Leo Yerxa, a multi-award winning author/illustrator, brings his unique talent to his newest offering, Ancient Thunder. Yerxa pays tribute to these beautiful wild creatures right from the end pages, with horses that are depicted in almost child-like, cut-out fashion and then in his author's note at the beginning, shows his admiration for them and the world in which they live. He also takes the time and space to explain his fascinating technique of using hand made water color paper, which he treated to give it the appearance of leather and then used wild watercolor paints mixed with gouache. The result of this extraordinary medium is striking and expressive. This detailed account by the illustrator is an added bonus that many teachers would appreciate.
Yerxa’s poetic lyrical text is sparse and thoughtful, with just a bit of text per page. This is in sharp contrast to the dynamic and bold full-color paper art work that reflects Yerxa's appreciation of nature. The large format book allows the reader to study the words and then the art portrayed in the patterns on the native shirts and dresses, highlighted by paper fringes.
Reesa Cohen is a retired Instructor of Children's Literature and Information Literacy at the Faculty of Education, University of Manitoba in Winnipeg, MB.
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Copyright © the Manitoba Library Association. Reproduction for personal use is permitted only if this copyright notice is maintained. Any other reproduction is prohibited without permission.