Picture This – Art Ideas for Bookweek in the St Peter’s Public Library Community Hall on June 22nd was the twelfth annual art-based event that the CBC has run. And I’ve been thinking recently about how it all started, and how things have changed over the years as our circumstances have changed.
Our first art-evening was organized for us by Jane Moore and took place in her school-library at the beginning of March in 2007. In part it was a celebration of the beginning of a new CBC year. So we called it a cocktail party: food was very, very plentiful, and the cocktails made you levitate.
The theme was (the UN) International Polar Year – and thus had nothing to do with the Awards or Bookweek. The particular pleasure of it all was seeing how Jane had decorated her library to reflect this theme. It looked simply stunning. The evening included a demonstration of relevant art-activities for children by Janine Boyd of Little Picasso Art (no hands-on!) and talks and displays by book-sellers (Bees Knees and Seelect at that first event). Participants went home with bags of goodies including a hand-out of pictures of Jane’s library to inspire them.
The last time we used an UN International Year-theme was 2012. By that time we had changed our venue to Linda Guthrie’s equally beautiful library, the presenter had changed, and her role become more prominent, and the alcohol was perhaps less elevating.
The new presenter was Evelynne Richardson, formerly a primary art-teacher, and also an artist in her own right. Evelynne introduced an element of hands-on, but it had to be kept very simple, as people were working on clip-boards on their laps.
By this time, too, the CBC Committee was concerned about the fact that although a great deal of effort went into organizing the art-event, and you couldn’t fault the presenter, it was decreasing in popularity. We decided that there were two probable reasons for this: one was that UN International Years were not all equally interesting, at least from a visual point-of-view (the 2012 one was the Year of Co-operatives – but perhaps we should rejoice that at least we escaped the Year of Pulses – 2016!); the other that trying to hold a CBC event in the face of The Fringe, the Festival, WOMADelaide, Writers’ Week and the car race was simply not a good idea. So we changed the date to May/June, and re-badged our effort as ‘Art Ideas for Bookweek’. Numbers increased dramatically the following year, and have been between good and overwhelming ever since.
In 2016 Evelynne retired as presenter, and we invited Maxine Cavaggion to replace her. Maxine has a long history teaching art to both children and teachers.
We intended, from the beginning, that the ‘Art Ideas for Bookweek’ session would include ideas on both the theme and the shortlisted picture books. But it has always been difficult to offer adequate coverage of both in a couple of hours on a Friday night when people are inevitably tired.
The ‘hands on’ element has also caused difficulties from the beginning: it takes up time, and we have to have the right equipment and appropriate furniture (ie tables).
Another factor we now have to take into account is that our public has changed. Teacher-librarians are well on the way to extinction (as are school-libraries that look like Aladdin’s Cave). We now need to run a session which is helpful principally to public librarians, classroom teachers, and SSOs. So there will be another discussion, and once again we will seek to adjust our offering to meet the current need.
Val van Putten,
Picture This – Art Ideas for Bookweek
Congratulations to our 3 winners, Hannah, Musey and Rose. Your wonderful art will be used by CBCSA throughout the year. You will be contacted about your prize vouchers.
'Twas the night before the announcement of the Shortlist, and five brave presenters explored the Notables, evaluated, argued and were brave enough to present their predictions and dilemmas in front of other children's literature aficionados.
Fueled by refreshments, the audience also had the chance to browse and buy selected books from the Notables at a pop-up book shop by our sponsor St Georges Books. Another highlight was the announcement and unveiling of the winners in our Book Week "Find Your Treasure" poster competition.
How did the presenters go? Not as well as they hoped, (about 50%), but more aware of the difficulties the judges face, and still prepared to defend their selections! Members can view the presentations on The Members Only page of the website.
Congratulations to the fabulous South Australian authors, illustrators and publishers recognised on the CBCA Notables list.
It is fantastic to see Allayne Webster, Charlie Archbold, Rosanne Hawke, Mem Fox, Mike Dumbleton, Phil Cummings (3 nominations), Katrina Germein, Amanda Graham, Mike Lucas, Jennifer Harrison, Vikki Wakefield, Sally Heinrich, Jane Jolly, and Midnight Sun Publishing recognised and wish them all the best for the Short List.
If we have missed a SA connection please email email@example.com so that we can rectify our list and add to our web page.
More than 60 people attended our first Book Shop Blitz for 2018 followed by a short AGM at Pegi Williams Bookshop on Monday 12 February 2018 to hear Rebecca Bird from Pegi Williams talk about "What's new and hot in children's books".
Guests also had the opportunity to network, browse and purchase over light refreshments. Inaugural Life Memberships were presented to Valerie van Putten and Anna Angelakis for outstanding long service to the Branch. Following presentation of reports the 2018 committee was elected with a wonderful response of 27 committee members.
We are pleased to announce that Emma Phillips from South Australia will be one of the judges for the Book of the Year Awards - Older Readers category for 2019/20.
The annual CBCA Book of the Year Awards affirm the quality of some of Australia’s most creative people and provides a boost to their capacity to devote time to their craft.
Entries in the Older Readers category are for outstanding books for young people aged between 13 and 18 years (secondary school level). Readers require a degree of maturity to appreciate the themes and scope of emotional involvement. Books in this category may be fiction, drama, illustrated text, poetry or graphic novels. Judging takes into account the literary qualities of the text, editing and book production.
Check out all the great CBCA products by Bob Graham and Freya Blackwood, at the Redbubble store. Here are just a few for you to enjoy but there are also posters artwork, journals and t shirts, as well as many others.
As another busy and productive year at the CBCA comes to a close and we enter the festive season, I want to give my special thanks to you, your Branch committees and all your volunteers for your efforts and the countless hours that you’ve put into the CBCA this year. It has been wonderful to see your Branches connecting with members and local communities and promoting literature and literacy through a calendar of informative and engaging events. The work you do at this grassroots level brings to life the CBCA vision of nurturing a literate, educated and creative society.
The National Board and its various sub-committees have also had a big year and I have a few final updates to share with you.
Following the meeting in Canberra last month of the Structural Review Working Party I attended the final branch meeting in this stage of the process, in NSW. The Working Party and Board are now working on the next steps which, in summary, will:
Identify Taskforces needed to report to the integration team; prepare the Integration Proposal for branches to consider; prepare a draft budget and document budget processes; identify required legal and constitutional steps; and complete a review of best practice national processes.
Many of you will be involved in these working parties and the Board will keep you all informed of progress. The Board will continue to work with NSW and Victoria to try to resolve the outstanding concerns they have.
Evergreen Merchandise Launch
Thank you for your support of our evergreen merchandise collection on Redbubble. Freya Blackwood’s Escape to Everywhere artwork and Bob Graham’s 1992 Windows into Worlds are now live on this print-on-demand website at this link.
Through this initiative we hope to share beautiful CBCA Children’s Book Week artwork from our archives with a broader audience and also generate an additional income stream. Redbubble offers us an easy, low-cost platform.
Sales from our first few weeks have been encouraging and we’ve received some positive feedback from Branches regarding the product quality. Keep an eye out for Shaun Tan’s Australia, Story Country! artwork in the New Year!
BOYA 2019 theme – voting open now!
Don' t forget to cast your vote for the 2019 CBCA Book Week theme at this link. Voting will close on February 5, 2018. There are lots of themes to choose from!
Awards Process Review Working Party
Thank you to everyone who responded to the survey by the Awards Process Review Working Party. The exercise has provided the Board with valuable insights and extensive data about the Awards processes. This is now being analysed and I will report back to you about it in the New Year.
Australian Authors Nominated for International Literary Awards
Recently, several Australian authors and illustrators were nominated for the 2018 Carnegie and Kate Greenaway medals. Zana Fraillon’s The Ones That Disappeared and Garth Nix’s Goldenhand and Frogkisser have been nominated for the 2018 Carnegie Medal. Philip Bunting’s Mopoke, Bob Graham’s Home in the Rain, Stephen Michael King’s Pea Pod Lullaby (text by Glenda Millard) and Jane Tanner’s Storm Whale (text by Sarah Brennan) have been nominated for the 2018 Kate Greenaway Medal. It is wonderful to see these talented creators recognised internationally.
Board Member Resignation
Debbie Hatswell, Director for Victoria, has resigned from the National Board to focus on her family and business. Debbie’s industry experience and expertise over the past three years have been invaluable. We will miss her very much but wish her the very best for her future.
Please forward this email to your Executive committees and members.
With best wishes to you all for a safe and happy holiday,
A wonderful breakfast meeting was enjoyed by over 30 people on Saturday 28th of October, at The Caledonian Hotel in North Adelaide. We were gathered to listen to Jane Jolly and Sally Heinrich discuss their new picture book "Papa Sky". It was fascinating to hear the creative process behind the book, where the ideas came from, how they were tweaked and the problems they needed to overcome.
Some of the young winners of our recently held "Champion Pics" competition also attended the breakfast and talk as their prize. St Georges Books were present for attendees to obtain signed copies of the book.
Thank you to Jane and Sally for an interesting insight into their creativity and to The Caledonian Hotel for a delicious breakfast.
To celebrate the theme for Book Week 2017, "Escape to Everywhere" the CBCA SA Branch held a dinner to escape to the fantasy world of Disconia, where disco never died and Eurovision is hailed by all. The dinner was held at "The Maylands Hotel" on Friday, August 25th.
SA Older Readers judge, Katharine England talked to the audience about the new judging processes. Our hosts for the night were Disconians, "Sacha and Maurice" (Lisa and Ben from "Little Big Parrots") who gave us a wonderful night of activities. Each table had to invent a National Anthem and flag for Disconia using 3 random words handed out by the hosts. There was a "Guess the country that belonged to the Eurovision song" competition, highlighting a very poor knowledge of Eurovision in the audience!
Thank you to all our sponsors ( Scholastic and Australian Standing Orders ) for donating the wonderful books and prizes for the raffles and competition winners.