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Join us as Sara O’Leary and Karen Klassen debut the trailer for their brand new picture book, You Are One! Watch the video below, then keep reading to learn more about the inspiration behind the story.
Can you tell us a little bit about the story behind YOU ARE ONE?
Sara: The idea for a series of books exploring milestones for babies actually came from the publisher. My own guys are a long way from their baby days so I wasn’t sure it was something I had much to say about, but actually it turned out to be great fun doing these books. I like to think of them as What To Expect When You Are A Baby books.
What materials did you use to make the illustrations in this story?
Karen: I used pencil, acrylic paint, oil paint, and Photoshop paint. My scanner and computer played a big part, but so did the sketchbooks and brushes.
What’s a page from the book or an excerpt from the story you’re really excited for readers to see?
Sara: Basically all the pages. Karen’s done such a fantastic job that I’m kind of in love with all these babies now. I would like to reach through these beautiful pages and squeeze each and every one of them.
Karen: I’m really curious to learn what pages resonates the most with parents, but for me it’s the teething spread. I loved drawing that big chubby face on the left, and was happy with how the pattern came together with the little guy on the right.
YOU ARE ONE is a celebration of all of the milestones reached in a child’s first year. Is there a particular baby milestone that you love most?
Sara: I love the monkey in the mirror illustration. I think that’s such a funny stage when babies befriend their own reflection. I also love Karen’s depiction of the baby who has learned how to say “no” captures what adorable little tyrants they can become. That first year is so much about the baby becoming their own self. It was lovely to revisit all of that.
Karen Klassen is an award-winning freelance illustrator and painter, specializing in fashion, lifestyle, and portrait illustration. Her international clients have included Rolling Stone, LA Weekly, The National Post, The Folio Society and The Sunday Times Magazine London. See more of her work at karenklassen.com.