News & Reviews

  • 3/9/10

On the banks of the Little Sioux River near Spencer, Iowa, stands a memorial to illustrator Gary Jacobsen. Many of you will remember Gary, who passed away in 1994, for his lovely pastel and scratchboard illustrations. One of Gary’s dreams was to return to his hometown and convert an old Episcopal church into a studio and loft residence. He died before he could do that; but last summer, in an effort spearheaded by his brother, David, Gary’s family moved the church to a hillside overlooking the river view. Called “Gary’s on the River,” the church forms the top story of a restaurant and retail complex. The walls of the restaurant, which opened last December, hold a lifetime of Gary’s original artworks, many of which were donated by clients who learned of the project. The formal dedication will be held early this summer, and I hope to be there. See the project and Gary’s work at Two links follow, one of which is a report by Iowa Public Radio, which covered the church’s move down main street:

  • 3/6/10

For some fun, check out Bryan Ballinger’s work on the Drawn! blog. He’s been featured twice!

  • 3/3/10

Bryan Ballinger has been promoted to Associate Professor of Digital Media Arts at Huntington University in Indianapolis, IN. A professor there since 2005, Bryan also contributed his illustration and writing talents to a new book on illustration called “Drawing Inspiration: Visual Artists At Work,” by Michael Fleishman. And, as if he’s not busy enough, he’ll be speaking to the Indiana Siggraph chapter later this month. Topic: how traditional illustration feeds into digital illustration.

  • 2/23/10

The Extraordinary Mark Twain: (According to Susy), the second picture book by author Barbara Kerley to be illustrated by Ed Fotheringham, was published in 2009. Starred reviews have already been garnered from Publishers Weekly and the School Library Journal (January 2010). The humorous story of Mark Twain’s daughter, Susy Clemens, contains excerpts from her own 130-page biography of her father, complete with spelling errors, which Twain described as “frequently desperate.”

buy at »

  • 2/9/10

Ed’s second picture book for Scholastic, a biography of Annette Kellerman, one of the first women to gain notoriety in the sport of swimming, has won rave reviews and award nominations. Mermaid Queen: The Spectacular True Story of Annette Kellerman, Who Swam Her Way to Fame, Fortune, and Swimsuit History, by author Shana Corey, was completed in 2008. It was named a Junior Library Guild selection for Spring 2009, and received a starred review from Kirkus and a rave review from Booklist. “Mermaid” was nominated for the 2009 Cybils Awards in the Non-fiction/Information Picture Book category. This award honors the best children’s and young adult literature of the year, as selected by the children’s book blogging community ( It has also been selected for inclusion on the American Library Association’s “Amelia Bloomer Project” list for 2010, an annual list of exemplary titles that positively portray strong female characters. This story of a plucky Annette, who overcame leg braces and societal restraints placed on women, can be purchased at

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