Writing and drawing secrets revealed

Picture perfect: Priya Ramesh learns illustration tips from Lesley Vamos. Picture: Natalie Roberts

Picture perfect: Priya Ramesh learns illustration tips from Lesley Vamos. Picture: Natalie Roberts

WHAT do a mountain, a witch's hat and a watermelon have in common?

Kellyville Ridge Public School pupils found out when illustrator Lesley Vamos and Emily Eyefinger author Duncan Ball visited for Children's Book Week on Tuesday.

Vamos led a cartooning workshop for pupils in years 3 to 6 and showed how all objects could be drawn from circles, squares and triangles — the base shape for a mountain or watermelon.

Teacher librarian Melanie O'Hanlon said she hoped the visiting authors and illustrators — who also included Andrew Daddo and Louise Pfanner for kindergarten to year 2 — would help the pupils do as 2014 book week theme suggested and "Connect to Reading".

"I want them to have a love of reading, to be inspired to write, to be creative, to not give up," she said.

"Andrew Daddo's very first book didn't get published, so for the children who have come across troubles writing they've been able to see him, and he actually discussed how he never gave up and now he's written all these books.

"Duncan, if you read his website, has always said how he's not been a fantastic reader when he was younger, so he inspires those young people to actually want to read and write to further develop their skills. Imagination is key."

Year 6 library monitors Ishita Arora and Priya Ramesh exercised their creative muscles by writing stories to match Vamos' current digital illustrations before her visit.

She has since offered to publish the students' work on her website.

"Lesley told us how to use a brush and how we should be creative with our mind and wise with our work and with our five senses," Priya said.

"She said the best way to do illustrations is to start from big and go down to small — so let the shape have more of the area around it and let the details come in."

Vamos, who grew up in Baulkham Hills, has illustrated the revived Punky Brewster series and other children's books including The Anything Shop.


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