Birthdays Around the World

It’s been a year of “around the world” themed books for me. Earlier this spring was the release of my baby carrying book with Owlkids, Up! How Families Around the World Carry their Little Ones, and now, it’s the fall release of Birthdays Around the World with KidsCanPress.

Birthdays Around the World shares the many foods, games, ceremonies and traditions involved in the birthday celebrations of 17 children from around the globe…all of which are actual kids author Margriet Ruurs met during her travels. How cool is that?!

I must say, this book involved a lot of research and fact checking. My editor, Katie Scott, and designer, Julia Naimska, and I spent hours combing through the details of clothing (the directions of kimono folds in Japan), how food is prepared and plated (the ackee dish at a Jamaican picnic) and how games are played (girls playing Ampe in Ghana). Thanks YouTube!

bdays_newsThis year had also been a big jump for me in regards to subject matter. Before these two books, my illustration work was mainly comprised of plants and animals, so I was a bit surprised when my publishers came to me with these two projects. I must have hid my fear well because, I’ll admit, the thought of cutting out a gazillion tiny hands and gazillions of tiny fingers did keep me up at night. But, here I am, alive and well and basking in satisfaction. I’ve done it…I’ve cut out a gazillion pairs of hands, eyes, ears and feet, and now I have a wider reaching, people-filled portfolio of work to show for it.

The following are some process shots of the making of the book:



You can purchase Birthdays Around the World on Amazon.


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My name is Ashley Barron and I'm a Toronto based illustrator. This is my online show & tell of new artwork and anything else I find inspiring. Thanks for taking a look :)

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