Sunday, May 15, 2011

Another Letter to Another New Hero

Here is my letter to illustrator Israel Sanchez:

Israel Sanchez,

I am Amy Whitaker, an undergraduate in the English Teaching program at Brigham Young University. I am currently enrolled in a class called Writing About Literature in the Digital Age, where we discuss the new methods and formats of expressing our interactions with literature. At the beginning of the term, each student chose a work of literature to focus on in the context of consume, create, and connect. In other words, we are expected to "read" the work differently than we've ever read anything before (through audiobooks, e-books, reading it out loud, reading others' blogs about it, looking at others' derivations of it, etc.), create scholarship on the work that is original, imaginative, and nothing like the traditional scholarly essay, and interact with a broad online community to collaborate ideas and share our scholarship on the work.

My book of choice was a childhood favorite, Where the Red Fern Grows. I was absolutely thrilled when I discovered your art that you did for the book for the Picture Book Report project. The illustrations provide a beautiful and nontraditional interpretation of the book that I find thrilling. I am interested in sharing some of these illustrations directly on my blog, but I wanted to make sure I have your permission. You will receive appropriate credit for the work, and I will provide links to your blog and website.

Thank you so much for your beautiful artistic interpretations of one of my favorite books. You have somehow portrayed both the childhood whimsy and the deep emotionality of Where the Red Fern Grows, which I find absolutely inspiring.

Thanks again,

Amy Whitaker

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