Went to a Bismarck library sale last week and picked up this little gem. First published in 1964 in Minnesota by Pearl Augusta and illustrated by Joseph Folger.
When I saw this book I immediately scanned through the pages. The book is only 4 colors and it looks like it was screen printed originally. The brilliant white space is continued throughout the story. This art is amazingly simple and equally pleasing. Though I would think boring to children. The only thing I didn't like about the art was the red next to the orange... They shoulda just cut the red out all together... I just assume orange and red were trendy in the 60s so I won't hate on it.
The story, on the other hand, coulda used some story structure and a point. I think I got what they were talking about, but there is a lot of boring fluff.
It's about this 60-year-old painter who lives in his aunt's house? that's the first bit of fluff on like the first page. it never explains why we should care that he lives at his aunt's house. Anyway, he is trying his darnedest to clean his house. Two kids come running over to hang out with Mr. Bumba. They realize how messy his house still is and offer to help.
The kids help Bumba run his two errands, picking up his dry cleaning and getting a pastry. while getting the pastry the kids tell the baker that Bumba needs help cleaning his house and he just wants to focus on his paintings. Turns out this baker also wants Paintings. The book ends with the baker doing all of Bumba's house chores and Bumba just pumping out a ton of paintings for the baker. it's actually kinda weird.
Over all, I wouldn't recommend the book to read for your kids. Pretty boring, But for an aspiring illustrator like myself, this is gold. with a slight rewrite this book could be something quite exciting, maybe playing up his bad vision a bit to make it more of a personal struggle of cleaning (and the tragedy that he is a visual artist). but they went with him wanting to capitalize on his work making it more a lesson in capitalism.Important but not very compelling to me I guess.
Designer & Illustrator