Contrary Creatures: Unique Animal Opposites
by James Weinberg
Weinberg uses bold graphic design to compare animal characteristics. The cover sets the stage with a wave-like separation between life on land and life underwater. The title font remains the same for both words. However, color and text position offer important informational cues. The demarcation between the two environments is neatly pierced with shafts of light streaming from the sky and penetrating the deep water.
Interior pages include comparisons of animal size, habitat, as well as distinguishing features and behaviors. There is even a nod to imaginary animals found in stories and legends.
A listing of the creatures along with a brief description of each can be found at the back of the book.
Debut author James Weinberg takes his silk screen art to new heights and depths with Contrary Creatures: Unique Animal Opposites. His designs are a fascinating study of color, shape, and texture. Take time to look for various textures and the pattern overlays found on each page.
Young readers may enjoy experimenting with some of these elements by creating simple potato prints. This How-To video from #MetKids is an excellent tutorial.
Home for a Penguin, Home for a Whale
by Brenda Williams ill Annalisa Beghelli
Images of ocean life, both in the water and near the shore, follow a wave-like motion across two-page spreads. Brenda Williams’ rhythmic couplets undulate along with these animals, visually reinforcing the text’s aquatic theme.
Annalisa Beghelli uses various shades of blue as the primary background. Generally the deeper blues are at the bottom of the spreads, with color values becoming lighter near the page top. Animals are depicted with a light whimsical touch. Sharks and barracudas to not appear particularly menacing.
A fun read aloud with a bonus: a tiny sea snail is hidden on each page, waiting to be discovered.
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Home for a Penguin, Home for a Whale invites readers to explore a wide variety of aquatic animals. Using the back matter as a springboard for discussion, students may want to investigate ways in which they can protect animals who thrive in and near the world's oceans.
This National Geographic video encourages youngsters to take action and help save marine life.