The Importance of Color

This was definitely the book that I was most excited about to read because of the childhood memories that I associate with The Tale of Peter Rabbit.  One of my family’s weird quirks is that we all call each other rabbits.  This morning as I was getting ready for class and talking to my dad on the phone about the book we were discussing, he jokingly reminded me that it was his story, since his name is Peter and it is the Tale of Peter Rabbit.  This is why I went into reading this book with an already firmly developed opinion.

While reminiscing on my childhood, I was reminded of how  important I found the drawings in this book, as well as other children’s books from then.  Beatrix Potter’s use of whimsical and playful color in her illustrations are what make it such an uplifting children’s book.  I had mentioned this in class today, but the way that she romanticizes her idea of nature in these drawings are incredible.

The image above, is my favorite drawing in the book.  The way that she utilizes the contrasting colors of the blue jacket with the red radishes truly make the illustration pop.  This use of colors brings a sense of joy to me, and this is why I associate color with children’s books.  I think it is a very important element of these illustrations and the books in general.

What do you think is the most important element to make an illustration a children’s book illustration?

One Reply to “The Importance of Color”

  1. Hi Caroline,

    I agree that the color of the images is a very important element in children’s literature. Like we talked about in class, the faded coloring is soothing and possibly helps calm a child down, getting them ready for bed. I also like that the color doesn’t overpower the drawings themselves and that it is not the main focus of the illustrations.

    The lack of bold, bright colors in this book may have added a more whimsical feel, which I don’t think Beatrix was going for. Her work involves staying true to nature and I think the watercolors were a perfect medium to accomplish this.

    Overall, I agree that color is one of the most important aspects of illustrating children’s literature. Even if there was a beautiful drawing in a children’s book, I don’t think it would appeal to such a young audience if color was absent.

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