When I was visiting with my family over the holidays, I sat with my 4-year-old nephew and tried to show him how to draw a dragon. Suddenly, I had this strong memory of my favorite drawing book when I was a wee lass — a book that showed me how to create all sorts of animals out of basic shapes.
That book was Ed Emberley’s Drawing Book of Animals, and I loved it beyond reason.
But I didn’t have that book when I was with my nephew, and the dragon that I hobbled together out of rectangles, triangles, and circles was a true abomination. Fortunately, my audience was four years old, and he happily tried to recreate it again and again. I vowed silently that I’d send him a copy of Ed Emberley’s book as soon as I got home.
And… it’s still sitting here next to me. Last night, I drew a birdie and a fox and an owl. I have an envelope all labeled and ready, but I can’t seem to put the book inside and seal it up. (I did put the book inside once, and immediately pulled it back out again.)
It’s more than just a drawing book, I think, more than just a powerful piece of nostalgia. I think the idea of making complex objects out of simple ones rocked my world. I think it still kinda does.
But mostly, I think I need to buy my nephew his own copy.