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Elton John is a cat and he LOVES to bake…

October 13, 2008

So, Marlo Thomas’ 1970’s philanthropic children’s bookbuster, Free to Be You and Me is celebrating its 35th anniversary.

Yours truly (along with many other contemporary illustrators) was asked to re-imagine and visually update some of the classic poems. Mine was the poem “Don’t Dress Your Cat in an Apron” by Dan Greenburg, penned in 1972. Its closing stanza of:

A person should wear what he wants to
And not just what other folks say.

…hit home with me as I love fashion and wearing funky, well-crafted clothing. Seriously, its one of the perks of being a professional artist: you can get a cool uniform if you want.

Its theme and its seventies-ish-ness origins, sparked the thought of my fav high-heeled, bespectacled rocker, Elton John. So off I went creating my image dubbed “Baker Kitty Elton”. I hope you like him.

Free to Be You and Me, version 2.0, is available in fine bookstores everywhere. Give it looky and wear whatever you like while doing so.

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Never Abandon Imagination Tony DiTerlizzi: Never abandon imagination.

Imagination is a world of possibility that exists within each of us. It is what makes us uniquely human. It is our creative fingerprint that touches and influences the world around us. Imagination is essential to art and science; to innovation and prosperity. It gives us hope, calls us to action and leads to change.

Whether it’s fairies, dragons, robots or aliens, all of my children’s book characters are siblings born of my imagination – an imagination strengthened through years of encouragement from family, teachers and friends. While so many others abandoned it during their transition from childhood to adulthood, I fiercely held onto mine, hoping for a day when I could share it to inspire the next generation of dreamers. Innovators. World changers.

Imagination empowers us to envision and create a reality of what could be. We must hold it dear, foster it and never abandon it.