A new children's book explores a city park through the seasons.
Edith Marie Karras has been taking pictures for over 30 years, and has lived in Minneapolis since 1985. She is a Powderhorn resident. Over the decades she’s participated in shows and art fairs and currently is an artist member and board member of Vine Arts Center in Longfellow. Karras uses her photographs to create ceramic tiles, posters, scarves, canvas wraps, and framed prints. Looking to create something new, she is now using her collection of children and nature photos to create picture books. "Let’s Go for a Wander" is her first, with more on the way.
What inspired you to write "Let’s Go for a Wander?"
Actually, the impetus was cleaning. The virtual cleaning out of photo files on my desktop computer. Like most photographers I have a mountain of pictures, and two or three times a year I try to organize, edit, and delete what I don’t need. This last time, as I was going WAY back in the library, I saw how many great photos I have of my son and his friends, as well as lots of neighborhood and nature pictures. Coupled with being in a slump about what else I could produce with my art form, and discussing things with my wife who is a teacher, I started researching the possibility of creating a children’s book using photographs instead of illustrations.
What was your favorite part of becoming a published author?
"Let’s Go for a Wander" is my first book, and honestly – It’s the people I’ve been working with at Beaver’s Pond Press. They have been so kind and so helpful; advising me from the get go, and pumping with me with enthusiasm. I’m so happy to have had a very positive first-time publishing experience.
What is your work schedule like when you’re writing?
When you’re working full time and raising a family, creating artwork most often takes a back burner. I, for one, was very happy with the advent of digital photography and the ease and accessibility of iPhones. It allowed for flexibility and is far less expensive than film. Still, the act of creating and producing final products can get squished into a corner. For example, many years ago I took care of my mother-in-law in our home. Also at that time, our son was only seven years old and my wife was in graduate school. I spent almost two years taking pictures of food and flowers in the yard because I was so tied to my house. However, I ended up creating an entire series called “Views from the Kitchen.”
What’s the next book?
My next two books are in the concept phase. One is called “Bearcub, Sprite, and Little Grey,” about our three cats. The Second is “Color Color Everywhere."
What was your favorite book as a child?
What I remember most is anything Dr. Seuss, Peter Rabbit, and "Where the Wild Things Are." My folks also read older kids’ books to me at a young age, like "Stuart Little," "The Jungle Book," and "The Wizard of Oz" series
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