Caldecott Honor Artist Gordon C. James

Click here to watch the 2018 ALA Youth Media Awards Webcast. 
I asked Matthew Cordell, Elisha Cooper, Gordon C. James, Thi Bui, and Jason Chin to answer two questions and to finish two sentence starters. 

Today is Gordon's turn to shine! Thank you, Gordon! 

Congratulations, Gordon! Everyone loves hearing about THE CALL. What ran through your head when the phone rang? What were you thinking about when the Caldecott committee was clapping and cheering for you? 

Gordon C. James: I was thankful and proud. I knew my wife and kids would be proud of me. Believe it or not, I was also thinking about what I might have done differently to improve the book. I didn’t win the award so that means there are areas in which to improve. The work that goes into refining my craft brings me great enjoyment. When there’s work to be done, or change to be made, I find that exciting.

 What does the Caldecott mean to you? 

Gordon C. James: Caldecott represents excellence in children’s book illustration. If you have one it means you are among the best to have done this.

Please finish these sentence starters: 

Reading is an escape.  

School libraries are where I used to go to repeatedly check out “How to Draw the Marvel Way” and “The Making of the Dark Crystal." 

Those books were never in my school library because they were always in my backpack!  I’d check them out any chance I got.  They were a big inspiration.  I still have the “Dark Crystal” book from Potomac Landing Elementary School.  I lost it, had to paid for it with my lawn mowing money, and later found it a year later.  It’s still in my studio today.  Kids, please keep track of your library books.  

 Borrow Crown: An Ode to the Fresh Cut from your school or public library. Whenever possible, please support independent bookshops. 


  1. I REALLY love the "lost library book" anecdote here, and your work is stunning, Gordon :D


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