Happy summertime, Kidliterati friends!!! Have I got a treat for you...
What an enormous pleasure it's been to get to Doodle and Adventure along with the often sassy though ever-helpful Carl the Duck in Mike Lowery's first edition of Doodle Adventures: The Search for the Slimy Space Slugs (NOW available from Workman Publishing!)
This book is especially great because the reader not only gets to doodle in a book (come on, like we all don't secretly LOVE and encourage it!), they also become a secret agent and solve a crazy mystery!
Mike's illustrations are eye-catching. He's got a style all his own and the minute you see the cover, like me, you'll most likely be able to pull several other books off your shelves with his illustrations gracing the pages.
My daughters (ages 11 and 10) and I thoroughly enjoyed our journey from accidental rookie to full fledged secret agent! Check out the FUN!
And, as if all of that wasn't enough, we also got to interview creator of Carl the Duck and author of Doodle Adventures, Mike Lowery!
QUESTIONS FROM A, AGE 11:
1. What books and art inspired you to be an illustrator and author?
That's easy! When I first started reading a LOT, I fell in love with a book called BFG by Roald Dahl (who I called RoNald Dahl back then!). After BFG, I read Matilda and then The Witches and was hooked. Now that I'm all grown up I STILL love his books and I've read almost everything he's ever written, I think. I also loved the illustrations that were done by Quentin Blake.
2. Did anything specific help you come up with the idea for Doodle Adventures: The Search for the Slimy Space Slug!?
I basically just combined my love for comics and my love for drawing. And I like drawing weird and funny stuff so why not draw a book about a duck that goes into space looking for Slimy Space Slugs!?
3. Did you base any characters in the book on actual people you know in real life?
There's a grumpy duck named Carl who is sort of based on a fake version of me (maybe!).
QUESTIONS FROM S, AGE 10:
1. How did you come up with this story?
Well, I started with the title: The Search for the Slimy Space Slug...I just made it sound funny. And then I made a list of reasons for WHY we would be looking for space slugs. I can't tell you why we are looking for them! You have to read it! Sorry!
2. Who's your favorite character in the book?
Definitely the grumpy duck named Carl. He's always in a bad mood, so he's fun to draw.
3. If you were a secret agent, what would your secret agent name be?
The Devious Doodler (but that's only if I was an EVIL secret agent).
MY IMPORTANT, HARD HITTING QUESTIONS:
1. How do enjoy filling your time when not writing/drawing?
I really like to travel with my wife and daughter. And I play music.
2. Do you have any other projects in the works?
Yes! I'm drawing a book all about super weird facts and I'm making another activity calendar for kids.
3. When did you begin illustrating and writing professionally? What was your first project?
My first kids book was called Gingerbread Man: Loose in the School
4. At what age did you discover your love/talent for drawing?
I was so young, I don't even remember. I've always loved drawing.
5. When beginning a new project, what comes first, the story or the illustrations?
That's a great question! It really depends on the project. For this book I started with a rough idea of the chain of events in the book and then I sat down and made drawings at the same time that I was coming up with the text.
6. We've thoroughly enjoyed doodling and adventuring through this book with Carl the Duck! Thank you so much for giving us a window into your process and inspiration. One last super important question from all three of us: What's your all time favorite food?
Awesome! I'm glad you liked the book. Now the important part: my favorite food. This is really hard because I love lots of different kinds of food. Maybe I'd say a POTATO. I know, I know...that sounds so boring, but you can do lots of stuff with a potato. You can mash it, cut it up and fry it, or cover it with cheese. Or maybe my favorite food is TACOS. Wait, no. Calzone. Curry! Hot and sour soup! Oh, man there's too much too choose from!
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About the author:
Mike Lowery is an artist living in Atlanta, Georgia with a beautiful German lady named Katrin and his incredibly genius daughter, Allister. Mike’s work has been seen on everything from greetings cards to children’s books to gallery walls all over the world, and he is a Professor of Illustration at the Savannah College of Art and Design Atlanta. He lives in an atomic ranch house, surrounded by trees where he likes to draw little animals in party hats and other silly stuff. For LOTS more check out his WEBSITE and INSTAGRAM. Be sure to keep an eye out for book 2 of DOODLE ADVENTURES: The Pursuit of the Pesky Pizza Pirate, releasing September 6, 2016!