Anna and I read a lot. We read before morning nap, before afternoon nap and before bedtime. And we have books on the couch in her room and the couch in the living room, so there’s always something for her to grab and bring over to read—which she does frequently throughout the day. (Okay, we actually have books of all types and sizes scattered all over our home.)

I’ve often bemoaned the fact that adult fiction books don’t have illustrations the way kids’ books do—or even the way adult books used to, sometimes, back in the olden days. I love illustrations in books, and they way they add that second dimension to a story. And as I read to Anna, I see how important the visual is as she often points out things in the pictures that I don’t see as I’m reading.

All those points aside, I find myself appreciating (again) the beauty of the illustrations in kids’ books. Some are pretty, some are whimsical, some are funny and others seem to tell a story of their own. And all of them can be inspiring to those of us who do other kinds of art: From the color palette to the illustration techniques, here are just a few picture books I’ve been inspired by lately.

Sara Naumann blog kids books

I LOVE these illustrations! They have a very stylish collage technique and kind of a retro feel—a favorite combination for me.

Sara Naumann blog kids books

"In an old house in Paris....": Go on a tour through Paris with these cool illustrations.

Sara Naumann blog kids books

These illustrations are so sweet and delicate, they make me want to get out the watercolor set.

Sara Naumann blog kids books

A fun folk tale I remember from when I was a kid—and the illustrations have a sort of stylized folklore look.

Sara Naumann blog kids books

A classic, of course—this book makes me want to rip up little pieces of paper and collage old-school style.

Sara Naumann blog kids books

We read this book almost every day, and I love the illustrations so much. They're so simple, but so detailed—and Anna loves pointing out the various items in each scene.

So next time you’re at the bookstore or library, make a special trip to the kids’ section and check out some of the illustrations. I think you might be inspired!

Happy Monday!

 

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