"The illustrations in picture books are the first paintings most children see, and because of that, they are incredibly important. What we see and share at that age stays with us for life." – Anthony Browne
British children’s book writer and illustrator Browne, born this date in 1946, started drawing and writing at age 5. Since he took it up professionally, he’s published over 40 books, led by his multiple award-winning book Gorilla. Browne’s books have won a basketfull of awards, including the Kate Greenaway Medal (twice for his illustrations) and the Hans Christian Andersen Prize.
While he writes in English, his books are out in 26 languages. “I don’t like narrowing my readers down – there’s not a particular age or gender or nationality,” he said. “I suppose I’m aiming at the child I was. I never want to make a child worried or afraid, and I don't think I do. My pictures are born from the belief that children are far more capable and aware of social complexities than we give them credit for.”
Active in sports - playing rugby, soccer and cricket as a young man - Browne said his early career goals were journalism, cartooning or boxing, but he always gravitated back to doing things for kids. “Never forget that children are at the heart of everything we do,” he said. “Respect them, listen to them, talk to them as equals and most of all, care about them.”
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