Have you seen the enjoyable movies Toy Story or A Bug’s Life with your children? If so, you’ve seen the work of WILLIAM JOYCE. Look for his imaginative children’s books and read your favorites with your children. You’ll both enjoy the pictures.
William Joyce, a native of Shreveport, Louisiana, has already achieved prominence in the field of children’s literature with over fifty children’s books published.
The talented illustrator has been on the cover of The New Yorker more than once. I’ve enjoyed watching the cartoon series, Rolie Polie Olie with my grandchildren for which he’s won several Emmy’s. Joyce has worked on the movies Toy Story (Disney, 1995) and A Bug’s Life, (Pixar, 1998).
Do you know any of his books? This creative author-illustrator loved television, comic books, and movies growing up. Adults will recognize themes in his art and original stories. Look for the works of William Joyce in your public library or favorite bookstore, choose your favorites, read the stories and enjoy the illustrations with your children.
George Shrinks (Harper, 1985) was the first book Joyce both wrote and illustrated. Joyce admits he was “raised by the TV set!” and describes George Shrinks as “King Kong in reverse.”
Children enjoy Dinosaur Bob (Harper, 1988).
I like the delightful Waiting for Spring Stories by Bethany Roberts illustrated by William Joyce (Harper, 1984).
His autobiography, The World of William Joyce Scrapbook (1997) is illustrated by Philip Gold. Children and adults interested in art will find this account fascinating but it would be more understandable and enjoyable if the books of William Joyce are viewed first.
One of my favorites is Shoes which Joyce illustrated. After exploring many kinds and uses of shoes there is a surprise ending. My autographed copy reads: “For Ginger—Have fun with the shoes!” With the signature by Joyce, is a girl stick figure wearing a large pair of shoes!
A big dilemma for young children beginning to dress themselves is the question: “Are my shoes on the correct foot?” See several activities in my book, Teaching with Rhythm and Rhyme about games and play (pages 120-122). Enjoy reading aloud the story Shoes by Elizasbeth Winthrop, Illustrated by William Joyce (Harper, 1986).
A personal story. When my now 94-year-old Mother was young, as part of a large family, she had to wait if her shoes were worn out and put cardboard in the bottom of her shoes until it was “her turn” to buy shoes. When I met William Joyce at USM, I told him that story and had him autograph a copy of his book, Shoes for my Mother. We were all three delighted!
A fun aside: Do your children like those “Hidden Pictures” in magazines or in the series of “I Spy” books? Some good detectives can even spy William Joyce’s “King Kong” in a drawing on the bulletin board in the book Shoes! )
Hooray for BOOKS! Discover and enjoy William Joyce! You’ve probably been buying new school shoes, clothes and supplies. Happy new school year everyone! Love, Nana o/`