We’re thrilled to have been interviewed by Travis Jonker for Noodlephant’s Cover Reveal at 100 Scope Notes.
It’s about a magic pasta machine. It’s about a community’s response to injustice. It’s 80 pages long. All that is to say it’s unlike any picture book I’ve read in a long time. And it’s great.
I particularly like K-Fai’s response about her sympathy with the characters she draws.
Travis: K-Fai – What were some of the key illustrations in the book for you? Maybe ones that you felt were the most pivotal to the storytelling? Which illustrations did you wrestle with the most?
K-Fai: When I worked on developing Noodlephant herself and her community (and I think this is true of a lot of illustrators) they became, in a way, real. This is because I spend so much time drawing the characters/getting to know them. I have to know the way they stand when they’re listening to other characters talk, how they eat out of a bowl, what their eyes do when they’re thinking. Also, I consider drawing to be a very embodied experience; when I’m drawing a character I’ll often pose or make the face I want them to make. So making a character encounter something traumatic is a difficult thing to do because it feels like you’re putting a friend through something awful. The scenes in Noodlephant that I experienced this with were the moments leading up to the kangaroo cops arresting Noodlephant, and the scene when she appears alone in front of a kangaroo court (literally and figuratively)
Warm words from Publishers Weekly:
Kramer tackles political oppression with wit, inventiveness, and a love of good food. . . Graceful black ink lines and bold color wash by newcomer Steele give the story even more comic force, capturing the joy of Elephant’s parties, the bleakness of her imprisonment, and her satisfaction as she finds a way to outwit her oppressors.