Sunday, March 20, 2011

Claudia Pearson

I came across the work of this fantastic Illustrator based in Brooklyn, NY who has done a lot of work in the area of getting kids interested in food and food in general!
Check out this wonderful "Buy Local" coloring book that is on Sale online on Etsy, its just one of the many examples of her simple, but charming illustration style.
Below is another sample of her work, a poster on the different types of Squash available during the winter:

You can view all her work at

The Garrulous Gastronaut's Summer Workshop

I will be holding a Gastronaut Workshop at iLeap Academy in Bangalore in April. The 4 day workshop is open for all children who are interested and in the age group of 7-10 years. For details please contact S Singhal at or you can call her at +91 9945804444. 

I designed the workshop based on the activities Cheeku and his gregarious gang of Gastronauts get up to and along with a bunch of new activities... HOPE YOU CAN MAKE IT!!! :)

Friday, March 11, 2011

Book Reading at Trio World School

I got the opportunity to do a book reading of A Garrulous Gastronaut’s Guide at Trio World School, Bangalore today. I was invited by their librarian Miss Nisha. They were celebrating the Common Wealth countries and students were dressed up in outfits that showed their nationalities so it was an interesting and colourful audience! The group that I read out consisted of young readers in nursery aged 4 up to Grade 6 students. It was a bit intimidating to read out to such a large group but the students were attentive and enthusiastic which was great.
I projected the book on a screen so that everyone could see the book as I read and could read along with me.

After the book reading I asked the students and teachers present if they wanted to ask me anything about the book or anything else.
The most memorable questions were:

Q) Do you like books? – By a nursery student.
A) Yes I most certainly do! I love books... you can get lost in a completely different world between two pages of a book!

Q) Why did you use those quirky names for your characters? – By one of the teachers.
A) In my family and even among a lot of my friends we always use pet names or nick names when we talk to each other. I think pet names added a bit of humour to the characters and made them more personal.

Q) Why did you write a book about food? –By one of the grade 4 or 5 students
A) I feel that now days we don’t think much about or really appreciate the value of the food we eat because everything is so easily available to us. But we really should think about the story of where our food comes from, starting from the farmer who grows fruits and vegetables on his farm to the cooked meal on our plates. There is so much value to our food beyond the price we pay at a super market- and I wanted to share this thought so I decided to write a book about it so that when people read it, they think about their food too.

Q) How old are you? – By a cheeky grade 1 or 3 student
A) 22... Yes, I know I don’t look much like an author- but I did write this book!

Q) How did you put the book in the computer?- By one of the really young Grade 1 or 2 students
A) To make my book I first typed the story in the computer and then made the drawings by hand which I then put in the computer by using a scanner. I then put the story and the illustrations together on the computer so that I can make lots of copies of the book by printing them rather than having to draw the pictures and writing the story  again and again each time I want a new copy.

Q) Will you write more books? - don’t remember who asked me this?!!
A) I certainly hope to!

We ended the session with a planting party just like how Bobo suggests in the book! Miss Nisha had soaked some coriander seeds overnight and each class got 3 pots to plant the seeds. It felt good to do the planting session after the book reading because coriander planting is Cheeku’s first activity as a Gatsronaut!

Unfortunately it was a very hurried affair as the students had to meet their principal after that for a prize distribution session for people who had come with the best national outfits!
I hope the students take good care of their coriander! 

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Cheeku's spreading his food knowledge!

I've been in touch with the people who work for a fantastic publication house called Pratham Books. They've put up a post about the Time Out magazine's feature on A Garrulous Gastronaut's Guide. You can check out the Pratham Books blog and the post here: