Monday, December 05, 2016

Help Raise Money for Arts Education! (& win a drawing lesson or another prize!)

I am auctioning off some exclusive artwork and opportunities to help raise money for arts education at the Worcester Art Museum. I'll definitely be able to help award art classes to a few kids, but if you help me spread the word (and maybe even bid), we'll be able to award art classes to a few DOZEN kids.

Bidding happens here: https://www.32auctions.com/organizati…/29326/auctions/35247…

Thanks so much!




Things are brewing...

All five Krosoczka family members stopped by to say hello to our book family. We can't say just what, but there are some awesome things brewing!

 

Sometimes fan mail can be humbling...





Commissioned Drawings Arriving!

Love this! Art is starting to arrive for people who ordered commissions on Etsy. I'll keep the shop up for a little while longer if you want to order a drawing.

https://www.etsy.com/shop/JJKDraws?ref=hdr_shop_menu




Thursday, December 01, 2016

Bid to support art education!





As many of you know, my grandparents were tremendously supportive of my creative efforts when I was a kid. Every year at this time, I remember them through an online auction that will help give kids free art classes in their name at the Worcester Art Museum. I love the idea of Joe and Shirl continuing to connect kids to an arts education.
The Joseph and Shirley Krosoczka Memorial Youth Scholarships at the Worcester Art Museum provide free tuition for art courses to children in unique familial situations with limited financial means. These items can't be bought at a store, found anywhere else online and will only be available through these fundraising efforts.
My time at the Worcester Art Museum was profound for reasons beyond the fact that I grew up to be a professional artist. Art helped me make sense of my world and acted a means of escape from the hand that I was dealt. Thank you for helping me give that gift to kids in my hometown!


Monday, November 28, 2016

Small Business Saturday!

Although I was unable to get to my local indie bookshop this past Saturday, I wanted to support them just the same. If you are looking to get any of my books signed and personalized, please consider placing an order through the Broadside Bookshop website. 

http://www.broadsidebooks.com/search/apachesolr_search/Krosoczka



Monday, November 21, 2016

Limited Commissions



If you follow me on Instagram, you know that I post a daily sketch there. After about a year of people asking, I'm opening up an Etsy shop where I will take a limited amount of commissions. This will probably only run for a few weeks, so if you ever wanted me to draw your kid or your pet, click on over to the link below. Thanks so much!

https://www.etsy.com/shop/JJKDraws?ref=hdr_shop_menu

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Reassuring art for kids

Over the last week, I've created a few images that I hoped would help lift spirits of the young ones at your school.

If you would like to hang these in your classroom, please feel free to print and hang.

This first one is a quote from my daughter's classroom. They state this before class discussions.














Monday, November 07, 2016

Halloween Compilation!

It is an incredible honor when someone dresses up as one of my characters. This Halloween there were lots of great renditions (and some great pumpkins too)!


When a kid dresses up as a Star Wars character... And it's a Star Wars character YOU invented!
Thanks Lillian, you make for an awesome Artemis Aphooine!



My friend Dana in Texas served up justice this Halloween!



Thank you to third-grader Izzy for making this awesome Platypus Police Squad pumpkin! Detective Zengo looks great!



The lunch ladies at Eiic Knowlton School in Berwick, Maine served up more justice!



Detective Rick Zengo never looked so good!
Photo via @WordNerd80 on Twitter.



Lunch Lady at Willard School looks grate! (See what I did there?)
Photo via @willard_lib on Twitter.



Detective Rick Zengo of the Platypus Police Squad looks gourd-geous.
Photo via @booksandbytes on Twitter.



Sorry, but the pirate is no match for Lunch Lady's wits and fish stick nunchucks.
Photo via @twilibrarian on Twitter.


And finally, one from home...

You squirrels couldn't have waited until November 1st?! And you monsters...you only had one job!

Hope everyone had a wonderful & spooky Halloween!


Forbes Library Mural and Collaboration with Kids!

Earlier this fall, I transformed the stairwell leading to the children's department in Forbes Library. Here's a look! I wanted to design a space that would inspire young readers and celebrate the city of Northampton. I celebrated with the community this past Saturday, complete with comically oversized scissors for the ribbon cutting!



Each window in the mural offers a glimpse of a book by an author who has lived in Western Mass.



Kids who came to the ribbon cutting ceremony got to help me finish the mural by drawing flowers on the Library Lawn! With the addition of flowers drawn by the youngest patrons of Forbes Library, the mural is complete!







P.S. Here's a before picture, to remind you what the stairwell used to look like...


And voila!

video



To see the full photo album on facebook, click here!

Monday, October 31, 2016

Let All the Children Boogie!

I'm proud to have illustrated the album cover for LET ALL THE CHILDREN BOOGIE: A TRIBUTE TO DAVID BOWIE. Not only is this a fantastic collection of reinterpretations of Bowie's songs by some of the top indie musicians for kids and grown-ups, but the proceeds benefit the It Gets Better Project.

Album drops on November 18. It's been getting some great buzz, even appeared in The New York Times!

And huge thanks to my friends at Spare the Rock, Spoil the Child for inviting me on!


The Day I Spoke at the White House

Why I visited The White House on October 19, 2016.

It was an immense privilege and honor to travel to Washington D.C. to be a part of the launch of Changing Minds, a new campaign that empowers adults to support children who have trauma and violence in their homes. The science behind this program is fascinating—the toxic stress released in the developing brain can create permanent adverse affects. But teachers, librarians, couches, counselors, lunch ladies—anyone working with children can help change that course with five daily gestures.

∙ Celebrate
∙ Comfort
∙ Collaborate
∙ Listen
∙ Inspire

You can literally change their minds.

I shared stories of my childhood and told tales of the teachers who made an immense difference in my life.

Changing Minds is a partnership between The United States Department of Justice, Ad Council and Futures Without Violence. I am so humbled that they invited me.

If you'd like to learn more, please check out their website: http://changingmindsnow.org

And former Attorney General Eric Holder was every bit as kind as you would imagine.










Monday, September 19, 2016

Creative Galaxy Art Consultant

It's not every day that you get to appear on your kids' favorite TV show!
Season 2 of Creative Galaxy has been released, and I am in it! I make an on-camera appearance in two episodes, but I also served as Art Consultant for the entire season. I'm excited to share some art concepts with such a large audience.
My kids LOVED season 1. After every episode, they wanted to turn off the television and make whichever art project that was introduced in that story. 
Creative Galaxy is created by the amazingly talented folks behind Blue's Clues and Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood. It was an honor to work with this talented crew!
Creative Galaxy is streaming now on Amazon Prime. I'm in episodes 7 and 8, but check out the entire season with your young artists. 
Also—Jason Priestly voices a talking pencil. What more could you ask for?


Forbes Library Mural


This is a composite of photos of the stairwell leading to the children's department at the Forbes Library, the main branch here in the city of Northampton. I'm so honored that Jude, the head librarian, asked me if I'd be interested in transforming this space. 
Imagine that? Coming up with something that could inspire generations of young readers as they enter the library.



I posted a slew of work-in-progress photos over on the Instagrams. 

Grace Lin and the National Book Awards Longlist

I'm excited for all of the nominees, but I am especially excited to see Grace Lin on the National Book Awards Longlist!
When the Sea Turned to Silver is a beautiful book and while it won't hit bookshelves until next month, I can tell you it will be worth the wait! 


Wednesday, September 07, 2016

Observational sketches by the shore and family draw time.

When I was a kid, my grandfather had me convinced that there were two seagulls named Stanley and Leroy. We'd visit them every time we went to the beach. And we spotted good ol' Stanley and Leroy this afternoon!






Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Weekly Sketch Roundup

Every day I post a sketch to social media, this is my favorite this week!

Saturday night #DadLife

To see more visit http://www.studiojjk.com/dailysketch.html

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Weekly Sketch Roundup

Every day I post a sketch to social media, this is my favorite this week!



The dude at the airport who is sporting a hat that reads "old fart" is setting new life goals for me.

To see more visit http://www.studiojjk.com/dailysketch.html

NAPTASTROPHE!

I can't wait for you to meet Lucy in NAPTASTROPHE!, my next picture book. On bookshelves May 2, 2017.


Thursday, August 11, 2016

Weekly Sketch Roundup

Every day I post a sketch to social media, this is my favorite this week!


When your friends visit, you hand their kid a book, and this happens...

To see more visit http://www.studiojjk.com/dailysketch.html

A New Class

What a thrill to chat with James Floyd on the official Star Wars site! Check out our discussion on A New Class here: 


Friday, July 29, 2016

Giveaway! Copy of Jedi Academy: A New Class with endpapers filled with doodles.





Thank you to everybody who entered the giveaway! Rafflecopter selected five winners at random, and they have been notified via emailed. The winning entries were from the people listed below.


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

A NEW CLASS

Imagine my surprise when, two years back, I received a message from an editor at Scholastic. Jeffrey Brown, a graphic novelist who I admire immensely, was stepping away from Jedi Academy, and would I like to write new books for the series? It was actually rather intimidating. It’s Star Wars, a world that is so rich with history that is so very iconic. It’s Jedi Academy, a hugely popular book series. But it was the very daunting nature of the proposition that motivated me to step up and grab hold of the lightsaber. I was being invited for what I do, so I knew early on that the only way this would work would be for me to create something that was very much me. 
I hope that you enjoy A NEW CLASS as much as I enjoyed writing and illustrating the book. I listened to the John Williams Star Wars score to pump me up throughout the entire creative process. I got to write lines for and draw Yoda! It’s like being handed the keys of a vintage, mint-condition swamp-green sports car. I also got to create my own droid, P-10! And of course, I created an entire cast of young characters for that galaxy far, far away. What an honor and a privilege.
May the Force be with you and please look for A NEW CLASS at your local bookshop.


XJK

Our little man is here! XJK arrived safely last Tuesday. Both baby and Mom are both doing great! As are the big sisters. We are all just floating. 
I'll largely be off social media, but will likely keep posting daily sketches over at Instagram.com/StudioJJK.


Thursday, July 14, 2016

Ghostbusters

Last summer, I had the great pleasure of getting a tour of Lucasfilm. Because they also house Industrial Light & Magic, I saw many pop-culture artifacts from my childhood up close and personal. Here are two of my favorites. 
We are hoping to make it to the movies this weekend, barring any trips to the delivery room...


Dedication

Imagine being a kid who loves to read and make comics, and you're a big Star Wars fan. Then imagine your family is having dinner at your friend's house and you're handed a Star Wars graphic novel—that has your name in the dedication!
I handed these guys an ARC of Jedi Academy: A New Class, and their faces lit up when I pointed to their names! Two more weeks until the finished version of the book is here!


We are ready for this baby boy.




Color palette, art direction and 9 months of pregnancy misery by Gina.

ILA 16 and Jedi Academy

I was supposed to be at ‪#‎ILA16‬ this weekend, but need to stay closer to home for want might be the sooner-than-expected birth of our third child. So I sent in a few hundred signed bookplates. I drew a lot of Yodas. But if you pick up a copy of Jedi Academy: A New Class and you find a drawing of Victor or Christina Starspeeder in your book—I'll Skype into your classroom! Look for copies via Scholastic and Anderson's Bookshop. NO PEEKING!!!


Rich on Tour

I recently got to see my brother play music. He's about to embark on a cross-country trip on his motorcycle. He'll start in Provincetown this week, then he'll play his banjo from town to town until he hits the Pacific Ocean. If you see a busker that looks like a younger, shaggier version of me please throw a few bills into his hat. His name is Rich, tell him I sent you.