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During one of our recent trips to the library our son, who’s got a good eye for books (mostly, I mean; he gets distracted by popular franchises), picked out this little treasure we’re sharing today: The Egg.

The book is written and illustrated by the wonderfully talented Britta Teckentrup (whose work we didn’t know before) and it tells all (well, a lot) about eggs in a style that manages to be both informative and artistic. J loved all the facts about different kinds of eggs, particularly the really large ones. We loved the art, its combination of minimalism and humanism (not an easy thing to pull off). Together we had quite a few fun evenings with the book before the time came to return it.

“Egg collections.” Throughout the book the use of texture and color is marvelous.

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“Egg colors”

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“Inside the egg.” This gave J a pause.

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Size comparison.

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The biggest egg ever. J loved this fact.

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There’s an interesting section on nests.

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A section on eggs not laid by birds.

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And one about the meaning of an egg in art and religion. While J leans towards natural facts, we enjoy the cultural angle.

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What are your favorite lucky finds from the library?

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As our focus drifts now a little to babies (and as we did some huge bookshelf cleaning recently), we remembered one of the first artsy books that our son liked: ABC by Bruno Munari. Bruno Munari was quite a fascinating Italian artist and children’s books were just a small part of his wide artistic and scientific explorations – but it’s the one we’re most familiar with. ABC is a classic letters primer, which uses very elegant, high-contrast typography and lovely, slightly old-fashioned illustrations. While this might not be a book in which you find new tiny details during each re-reading, its very simplicity appeals to children and its high aesthetic level develops their sensitivity.

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This is one gorgeous onion.

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Gdynia Design Days is a local design festival happening in our city and this year it includes two small exhibitions of illustrated books for children, which, as you know, is totally our thing. We took our son and went to see the works by some of the most popular Polish illustrators of today. Even though we already knew most of the presented works, we still enjoyed seeing them together and the way the exhibitions were arranged and J had a real blast, making a mess: moving stuff around and ruining the careful arrangements. Luckily, nobody minded because, well, that’s what you expect from children in a gallery. If they don’t touch anything, they’re probably not having fun. (Sidenote: we wouldn’t let him touch stuff in the Louvre, don’t worry.)

A series of books illustrated by Joanna Bartosik.

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A nice exhibition idea.

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What Do We Travel by? (from a selection of one-off books)

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Hedgehog.

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Map-inspired lists of attractions for various Polish cities by Ładne Halo.

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The Palace of Culture in 3D from Architekturki by Robert Czajka.

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J just couldn’t get enough of this fox cutout, carrying it around the whole exhibition.

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A selection of books to read and enjoy.

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Paper animals, also by Robert Czajka.

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Wolves.

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Children enjoying an animation based on Iwona Chmielewska’s illustrations.

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An illustrated labyrinth.

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Just in time for Christmas cheer we want to share the most themed book on our shelf. (Also, I guess we don’t actually have so many Christmas books and that should be corrected. What are your favorites?) Marguerite’s Christmas is written by India Desjardins and beautifully illustrated by Pascal Blanchet. (We’ve got a Polish edition but you can see or buy English one on Amazon, here.) It combines two emotions which often go together during this holiday season: sense of magic and sense of sadness and also manages to say something true about the old age (thus, becoming much more than just a book for children).

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The illustrations are quite artful, using colors, compositions and a certain old-fashioned style to match the atmosphere and the theme of the story. At the same time they’re very modern in their simplicity.

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We know few books, particularly picture books, that would capture better the feel of a winter night.

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Or the emptiness of an apartment.

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re-shop-friendsAnd here’s just a last-minute reminder that there are still promos and great gift ideas (including, but certainly not limited to, our stuff) on Society6 and bza.

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Do you know it’s been over five years since we first published our series Iconic TV Shows? Our style has changed somewhat since then and lots of those shows are no longer remembered or they also changed completely. Time flies.

Still, it’s one of our favorite – and definitely longest running – projects and we like adding new posters to the series. This year one of our biggest TV discoveries (well, “discovery” is a big word for a show everybody and their aunt saw before us) was the series pictured below and so we proudly add it to the collection.

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And if you’re in love with Hawkins and want a bit of it on your wall, you can buy our poster here (also available as various other products) and here.

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(And here for your convenience links to all the rest of them on bza – and they’re also on Society6.)

 

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For our son’s second birthday this year we have again made him a custom picture book. This time we illustrated a story that we’ve been telling him for a while now before sleep. He usually gets bored quickly of those stories and demands that we come up with new ones but the story of a fox that tries to copy the behavior of other animals held his interest longer so we chose this one as a birthday gift.

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The fox meets a pig.

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The bear and bees.

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Stuff like this is always a welcome break from whatever else we’re working on and we only hope J will enjoy the book as much as we enjoyed making it.

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We return with more books by the estimable Miroslav Šašek, this time presenting two other European cities close to our hearts.

This Is Paris was the first book Šašek created. Published in 1959, it started the entire series and its success: and no wonder because it really captures some of the magic of the city (or specifically, the Parisian magic of the 1950s).

Polish version of the book.

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Notre Dame, one of the best things in the world.

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The Louvre without the pyramid.

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This is Rome followed a few years earlier and doesn’t it look like taken straight from the shots of some of the great Italian movie directors? It always makes us think of it anyway.

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Roman lettering, among other things.

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The Colosseum page shows Šašek’s true mastery at architectural illustration, which combines lightness and precision.

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Next week we’re taking a break because we’re finally leaving for our all-too-short holiday (but there will be small illustrations, as usual). We’re back with big updates mid-September!