Monday’s Marvelous Picture Book: Follow Me by Tricia Tusa

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Tricia Tusa’s whimsical illustrations in her book Follow Me tell the story of a girl that daydreams about soaring through the sky as she swings on the tree-swing in her backyard. We follow the girl as she leaps off the swing and floats through nature, enjoying the different colors and experiences that each place brings. As the swing falls back down to the ground, the girl’s journey of her imagination brings her back home.

As Tusa intended, Follow me relies heavily on the illustrations to express the concept of exploring the world with the help of your imagination. Tusa explained that she tried to use as few words as possible to convey her message. This intention is made very clear as each page is filled with illustrations, with only a few words of text strategically placed within the images. Although there are only a handful of sentences in the whole book, I think Tusa chose her words wisely. The language that she uses enhances the connection that you make with the story when reading the book.

Now for the most important part: The illustrations! Personally, I love just about every aspect of them. Overall the illustrations are very wispy and playful, and the pastel color palette helps create the sense that this journey is a daydream. Tusa’s depictions of the girl soaring through nature were very creative– the girl looked like she was floating, and even becoming a part of her surroundings.

Tusa has shared some of her early sketches and drawings-in-progress that she created for Follow Me. Below are a couple examples that show her drawing process. If you would like to see more, go to: http://www.amazon.com/Follow-Me-Tricia-Tusa/dp/0547272014

1. “Thumbnail sketches help me to figure out the pacing of a book, and show the book in its entirety revealing how it works as a whole. They make clear the amount of variety from page to page.”


2. “I draw with my favorite pencil on tracing paper. I then Xerox these drawings, taping them together into a dummy. This is what I send to the editor.”

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3. “I really wanted this book to have a very imperfect, hand-done quality. So, I decided to use an etching process.”

“Swing into a daydream!” with Tusa’s amazing book, Follow Me!

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