Books About Virginia Sterrett

Virginia Sterrett’s illustrations are magical, taking readers into the story and off to a faraway land. On this book list, we’ve included the three books she illustrated during her brief career. You’ll also find a few books that encourage children to follow their dreams and become illustrators when they grow up. Sometimes, illustrations can be even more powerful than words. We encourage you to reflect on that as you read through the books on this list!

Old French Fairy Tales Comtesse de Ségur

Page through the illustrations of Virginia Sterrett as you read these French fairy tales. This volume features the stories of The Little Gray Mouse and Ourson. Through the stories, good moral values and the power of love will come to light. These vintage stories are sure to give upper elementary children a new perspective on literature.

Women Illustrators of the Golden Age Mary Carolyn Waldrep

This compilation of illustrations features the work of 22 female illustrators who created their work near the turn of the twentieth century, nicknamed The Golden Age of Illustration. It includes a brief biography of each artist and reprints of several of their pieces. Along with Virginia Sterrett, you’ll see illustrations from Beatrix Potter, Mabel Attwell, Jessie Willcox Smith, and others. Use this book to encourage your children to study these illustrations and look closely at the details.

Aaron Slater, Illustrator Andrea Beaty

In this story, kids will learn about Aaron Slater’s childhood days. When he was young, he struggled to learn to read. After his class gets a writing assignment, Aaron doesn’t know what to do. He has great ideas, but he wants to communicate through art, not words. It’s a moving story that will help children understand learning disabilities a little better. The last page features a biography of Aaron Slater that tells how he grew up to become a painter, muralist, and graphic artist. Read it to your elementary kids.

The Arabian Nights Coloring Book Virginia Sterrett

This is your chance to add your own color to Virginia Sterrett’s illustrations from the 1928 version of The Arabian Nights. It’s a softcover book with 21 illustrations to color. Each one is blank on the back, so you don’t need to worry about colors bleeding through. The level of detail in each illustration is appropriate for elementary children.

Before They Were Artists: Famous Illustrators as Kids Elizabeth Haidle

This graphic biography takes an interesting look at the childhood of six influential illustrators. Kids will hear about their inspiration, their accomplishments, their failures, and their most famous works. They’ll be asked to consider the question, “What makes an artist?” This book provides an easy way to talk to your children about their dreams and the challenges they may face. Read it beside your elementary children.

Picturebook Makers Sam McCullen

Learn more about 12 modern illustrators in this behind-the-scenes book. Each illustrator directly shares their insights and experiences in the industry. You’ll also see several pieces of their artwork and hear what inspired them. This book covers 160 pages, so it’s best to take it one author at a time with elementary kids.

Tanglewood Tales Nathaniel Hawthorne

Bring Virgina Sterrett’s beautiful illustrations and the excitement of Greek mythology home with this book. You’ll read about Theseus and the Minotaur, Antaeus and the Pygmies, the Dragon’s Teeth, Circe’s Palace, the Pomegranate Seed, and Jason and the Golden Fleece. The stories are simplified a bit, but you’ll still find all of the classic language you’d expect in a book like this. The text is dense in this one, so we recommend reading it aloud together.

Becoming a Successful Illustrator Derek Brazell

This book provides a higher-level explanation of what it takes to launch a career in illustrating. Kids will learn about promoting their work, getting noticed by clients, and setting up the business side of their career. There are also several “Spotlight On . . .” sections that feature illustrators and the clients who have hired them. This is a great book for pre-teens and teens who may be interested in a creative art career. Read it together, discuss their questions, and inspire them!

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