In this post, we handover to Mathieu Lavoie to introduce himself, his work space and new picture book ‘Toto’s Apple’.
I live and work from home. We have a room dedicated to the art of making books (my wife is a picture book author and illustrator). In it, we have all our art material and many, many books. I like to describe it as an organised chaos. We have books that I publish with Comme des Géants, since I have to keep a small inventory at home for press releases and events. We have books that my wife has written and illustrated and all their translated editions. Finally, we have the reference bookshelf with biographies, graphic novels, essays, comic books, magazines, all related to art. That bookshelf is full of memories.
Here, you can see the inclined table I use to draw and paint. In the background, the book units and shelves with various objects and music, a basketball and a few baseballs (my two favourite sports, very American haha). You can also see an original poster from Kieslowski’s 1979 movie Amator (my favourite movie of his).
In this picture, you can find the various colours and types of gouache I used for Toto, with brushes and a final drawing of the original Canadian
cover. I really like the lightness and colour vibrancy of gouaches. They dry quickly, but you can always go back to the colour with a bit of water. For Toto, I used some colours straight from the jars, and mixed a few more that I couldn’t find already existing.
And here’s my computer station. This is where the books come to life (virtually). I’m glad I like what I do, because I spend a lot of time in front of this machine! Also, pictured here is a cutout photo of my daughter as a bookmark she gave to me on the occasion of my birthday last year.
Ciao for now!
Mathieu Lavoie is a children’s book author and illustrator, as well as the creative director and co-founder of Comme des Géants, a children’s book publisher based in Montreal. Mathieu lives in Montreal with his two children and his wife, award-winning author-illustrator Marianne Dubuc. This is his third picture book, but his first book with Phaidon. http://www.mathieulavoie.blogspot.co.uk
Toto’s Apple is an illustrated tale about a tenacious worm and an apple just out of reach, by author-illustrator Mathieu Lavoie. Toto creates plan after plan to reach an apple high up in a tree. His crafty strategies will inspire creativity and independence in young readers as Toto encounters each humorous failure with an increased determination to succeed. Toto’s Apple is published by Phaidon 13 September.