In Forest Baby, a baby peers out at the trail from a carrier. Leaves rustle overhead, and a turtle stretches toward the sun. Everything shimmers with light, including the jeweled wings of a dragonfly and the star-shaped lilies. This delightful board book takes the reader on a hike accented by the soft sound of footsteps on the trail and grounded by the rhythmic rocking of mother and baby moving through the forest. Travel along on their serene journey with Laurie Elmquist’s lyrical verse and Shantala Robinson’s warmly painted collages. A beautiful book that will be treasured by anyone who loves the outdoors.
Can you tell us about the illustration style of your book? How did you decide what it would be?
I used colored paper cutouts. This is the style I have been using for my freelance work.
What is your favorite medium to use?
What are your favorite ways to procrastinate?
Reading mystery thrillers and watching NFL football!
Where do you do your illustrations? What would be your ideal place to work?
In any spare corner of the room my one-year old son can’t get to.
Did you do any research for your illustrations?
Yes, lots. I went on lots of walks in forests around my home in New Westminster and in Burnaby. I took lots of photos. And my son is the model for the baby in some of the spreads.
What is your favorite spread in your book?
The last spread. Mom and baby are going on further adventures, heading off into the green landscape ahead.
Do you have any special or unlikely talents?
I can run long distances quite easily. I have participated in a number of marathons.
Do you listen to anything—music, podcasts, audio books—while you work?
Lots of music, and I like sports on the television as background noise.
How do you know when an illustration is finished?
When I run out of time!
Forest Baby by Laurie Elmquist, illustrated by Shantala Robinson is available now!
Shantala Robinson has been drawing voraciously since she was a child. She currently works in the field of illustration and graphic design, selling artwork and working on commissioned pieces. She draws and paints in a variety of styles but tends toward using multimedia to collage her pictures. Shantala is passionate about literature and travel, gaining inspiration from her exploration of strange and fantastic environments both fictional and real. She believes the world can be a wondrous and magical place, and tries to recreate that sense of adventure in her artwork. Shantala lives in New Westminster, British Columbia, with her husband and toddler son.