Today, I’d like to talk about yet another person who was an inspiration to my work.
This gentleman is named Marc Brown. For the uninitiated, Marc Brown is the creator of the famous literary and animated property, Arthur. Over the years, Brown has produced several books starring the aardvark Arthur Read, his family, and the many characters that make up his universe.
Born on November 25, 1946 and raised in Erie, Pennsylvania, Mr. Brown grew up hearing stories from his grandmother Thora. This led him to create stories of his own and would set him on the path to doing children’s book illustration. He uses watercolor in much of his illustrative work, thanks to high school art teacher Nancy Bryan. You have to give the guy credit; I’ve worked with watercolors and that’s not an easy medium to work with.
He’s illustrated many books, but Brown’s claim to fame is the aardvark, Arthur. The character first appeared in the 1976 book Arthur’s Nose, albeit very different from the character we know today. I did read some of these books as a child. I used to own a copy of Arthur Goes to Camp (1982) years ago. I remember reading this book over and over in my apartment in Queens, New York. Not only was the art beautiful, but Arthur’s problems really made me sympathize with him.
I also read some of his other books courtesy of both my school and public libraries like Arthur’s Valentine and Arthur’s Halloween.
Marc Brown is not only a gifted artist, but he certainly can tell a story. Arthur has heart, something that is necessary for a character to really come to life! In fact, he’s beyond successful; Arthur Read is a character who is adored by many children around the world through the books and the TV series he’s appeared in.
Marc Brown’s books not only fueled my imagination as a child, but gave me something to aim for as an adult.
It is my hope that one day, Sunnyville Stories will achieve the same level of fame that Arthur has.