Friday, October 7, 2016

Why Picture Books are Important - Rick Walton

I didn't write this but I thought it was worth sharing.
The person who wrote this was Rick Walton. I found out that Rick passed away this morning while surrounded by his loved ones. I doubt Rick would ever realize how much he touched mine and countless others with his generosity and example. He was a BYU Professor, Author of hundreds of children's books, friend, and all around great guy. We will miss you Rick.
Why Picture Books are Important,
And why they are for Everybody
by Rick Walton
Picture books are often seen as literary baby food, the stuff we feed children until they have teeth to eat real food.

I would argue, however, that picture books are not baby food. They are not just for young children.
In fact, I would argue that picture books are perhaps the most important literary format that we have.

Here are 10 reasons why I believe this:

1. They are the first books that children fall in love with, that turn children into lifetime readers. Lifetime readers become lifetime learners. Lifetime learners become lifetime contributors.

2. Picture book language is often more sophisticated than the first chapter books that children read, and therefore are an excellent way for children to learn language. It is here that children and others, can learn vocabulary, imagery, rhythm, shape, structure, conciseness, emotional power.

3. The picture book is the most flexible of all literary formats. You can do almost anything in a picture book. This flexibility encourages creativity in both writer and reader. It broadens the mind and the imagination. And given today's challenges, we desperately need more creativity, broadened minds, and imagination.

4. The picture book with its interaction between text and illustration, with its appeal that the reader analyze the interaction, helps develop visual intelligence. It helps us look for meaning in the visual. And since most of us are surrounded by, and inundated by visual images our whole lives, visual intelligence is an important skill.

5. Some of the best art being created today is found in picture books. Picture books are a great resource for art education.

6. The picture book appeals to more learning styles than any other format. It is read loud for audible learners. It is written and illustrated for visual learners. It often asks you to interact with it physically for kinesthetic learners.

7. In fact, the picture book, of all formats, is probably the best format for teaching an idea, getting across a point. Because picture books are short, all messages, knowledge, ideas expressed in a picture book must be boiled down to their essence. They must be presented in a way that it is impossible to misunderstand. If you want to learn a difficult subject, start with a picture book. If you want to express a powerful message, a picture book is one of the most powerful media for doing so. many middle, upper grade, and even college instructors have recognized the value of using picture books in their teaching.

8. The picture book does more than any other literary format for bonding people one with another. As a child sits on a lap and is read to, as a parent, a grandparent, a teacher, a librarian reads to a child, extremely important connections are made, bonds are formed, generations brought together.

9. The picture book also has the broadest possible age range of audience. Few four-year-olds will appreciate a novel. But many grandparents enjoy a good picture book. I have read picture books for upwards of an hour to groups including toddlers, teens, parents and grandparents, where all were

10. The picture book is short, and can fit easily into the nooks and crannies of our lives. Five minutes here, 10 minutes there, plenty of time for a complete literary experience.

Picture books are poetry, adventure, imagination, language, interaction, precision, and so much more.

Picture books are not books that children should be encouraged to "graduate" from. For picture books have something important to say, to give, to all ages, all generations.

Picture books are not just books for children. They are books for everybody.

Friday, June 24, 2016

Super Hero Animals

I've been playing with what animals would best represent certain Comic book heroes and villains. Here are a few that I've done, with more on the way. Let me know your ideas, or suggestions.

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Scolastic Summer Reading Road Trip

I'm going to be participating in the Scholastic Summer Reading Road Trip today at the King's English in Salt Lake,  from 3:00 to 6:00. If your in the area stop by and say Hi.
For a full list of road trip events, visit #summerreading

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Super Hero Portraits

Superman VS Batman
Color VS Black and White
Digital VS Traditional 
(So much Tension!)

I've been working on some super hero portraits for this coming years conventions. Let me know your thoughts.

Inktober 2015

Here are a few quick drawings I did for Inktober - 2015.
Halloween BFF's - Pencil, Brush Pen

Inked - Brush Pen

Branch Out - Brush Pen

Cat and Bat - Ink and Digital

Goblin Valley Goblin - Brush Pen

Historical Figures

I thought it would be fun to start doing some portraits of different historical figures. Here's the first few.

Abraham Lincoln - Pencil

Mark Twain - Pencil

Friday, October 24, 2014

Halloween Characters

I decided for the rest of Inktober I'd just try to do a different iconic Halloween character each day, with whatever process struck my fancy. Here are the first four.
Dracula - Matt Loveridge
Witch - Matt Loveridge

Werewolf - Matt Loveridge

Frankenstein - Matt Loveridge

Inktober #6

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Good Review for "This Old Band"

The publisher sent this over. It's the book review for this old band from the School Library Journal. Apparently it supposed to be in their July issue. 
This Old Band
WISSINGER, Tamera Will. Illustrated. by Matt Loveridge. 32p. Sky Pony. 2014.
The popular nursery rhyme “This Old Man” gets a fresh twist in this picture book filled with rhyming and counting fun. Using a variety of homemade instruments and objects, the cowpokes set out on the open range. They make some unexpected friends as they play their music through the day—and all through the night—while counting down from 10 to 1. “Number eight/Plays click click/Eight plays click click with a stick./With a tick tick boodle pick,/Play a mustang song./This old band plays all day long.” Clever use of alliteration and rhyme, as well as laugh-out-loud funny tongue-twisters, complement the singsong nature of the story, making this an ideal book for both storytimes and one-on-one sharing. The bright, lively cartoon art complements the story, blending likability with silliness, and is sure to encourage readers to sing along. Librarians and caregivers will appreciate the creative use of language and the reinforcement of counting skills, which work in tandem to encourage early literacy development.–Natalie Braham, Denver Public Library
Good reviews are far easier to take than criticism :)

Thursday, May 8, 2014

This Old Band

This book is coming out on June 3rd through Sky Pony Press, and it was a lot of fun! It's all about a group of old cowboys and their makeshift instruments they use to form their band. I don't think I could have hand-picked a funner book to work on. The author of this book is the very talented Tamera Will Wisinger. Here is the cover, with a few interiors. To see some more of the interior images you can go here. If you want to buy a copy, you can buy it at,,, or