The inspiring, educational and wild illustrations of Ed Emberley
June 18, 2017 9:47 AM   Subscribe

The influential, instructional illustrator Ed Emberley is in his 80s and still drawing. He has a range of styles, from the Caldecott Medal-winning Drummer Hoff (1967) to his creatively die-cut Go Away, Big Green Monster (1992), and perhaps most memorably a whole range of drawing books, which generally start with the reminder that if you can draw these things → · U D Δ □ ⇝ you can draw all kinds of things. If you can't find his books, the EMBR Group has a blog of Ed Emberley's Drawing Pages, and his website has more activities to print and use for non-commercial purposes (full terms of use).

If that's not enough, you can find activities for most of his other books, like Go Away, Big Green Monster.

If you want more from Ed himself, here's a good interview with him that covers a range of topics, from what happens after the end of Drummer Hoff and how long it takes him to make a book. And here are a few video interviews and profiles: KAHBAHBLOOOM: The Art and Storytelling (and singing!) of Ed Emberley, related to the the Worcester Art Museum's recently closed art exhibit retrospective; Ed Emberley, Children's Book Illustrator—Getting to know Ed (lynda.com tutorial); Scion Installation LA: Ed Emberley & Friends // Ed Emberley interview (Scion AV, with Caleb Neelon, the show's curator)
posted by filthy light thief (15 comments total) 62 users marked this as a favorite
 
omg THANK YOU for this post! I started buying his drawing books for my goddaughters as soon as they were old enough; they're magical and empowering!
posted by lalex at 10:01 AM on June 18 [2 favorites]


My "work" from his fingerprint-drawing books are the pinnacle of my artistic career.
posted by ovenmitt at 10:28 AM on June 18 [6 favorites]


Oh, The Wizard of Op! One of the earliest books I remember loving. Thanks, flt!
posted by MonkeyToes at 10:28 AM on June 18 [1 favorite]


Drummer Hoff was one of my favorite books when I was little, both for the rhyming language and the amazing illustrations.
posted by mogget at 11:21 AM on June 18 [2 favorites]


This is fantastic! I forgot how much fun I had with these books as a child and I just now realized I have my own children!
posted by Slarty Bartfast at 11:57 AM on June 18 [4 favorites]


I spent SO MUCH TIME as a kid drawing everything from his drawing books, and I haven't thought about it in years. How lovely to know he is still alive and working.
posted by Rush-That-Speaks at 12:49 PM on June 18 [4 favorites]


Thank you for this wonderful reminder of Ed Emberley! I absolutely loved his books as a kid and spent many happy hours doing fingerprint drawings. I think I have just found my nephew's next birthday present...
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 12:49 PM on June 18 [1 favorite]


Count me in as another childhood fan of Emberley's drawing books, especially his Halloween and monster themes.
posted by Faint of Butt at 2:01 PM on June 18 [1 favorite]


I was absolutely a child of the Ed Emberley books. I am thrilled to think that there are literal decades' worth of his material I've got to catch up on, now!
posted by rum-soaked space hobo at 3:01 PM on June 18 [1 favorite]


I love Ed Emberly's drawing books. It is one of my disappointments as a parent that, no matter how many of them I bought, none of my kids ever got into them.
posted by Orlop at 3:35 PM on June 18 [2 favorites]


I am loved Ed Emberly's books so much when I was a kid. They filled many many hours.
posted by GenjiandProust at 3:49 PM on June 18 [2 favorites]


Oh, hello nostalgia rabbit hole!
Thank you for this most excellent post.
posted by the primroses were over at 4:00 PM on June 18 [2 favorites]


I checked his books from the library often as a little kid. Loved em so damn much.
posted by symbioid at 6:23 PM on June 18 [2 favorites]


Drummer Hoff was one of my favorites as a child, and some of my earliest memories are of my mom reading it to me. The rhythm of it, so exciting! Also shows how everything takes teamwork, everyone is important.

The illustrations gave perfect accent to the story.

I still have my copy.
posted by monopas at 9:49 PM on June 18 [1 favorite]


So my eight year old nephew received the books we sent him (Ed Emberley's Drawing Book of Animals and Make a World) and loved them! Apparently he started drawing as soon as he opened the package, and ended up taking both books to bed with him : )
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 1:31 AM on June 23


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