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Up And Down

The Incredible Book Eating Boy

Oliver Jeffers?

Oliver Jeffers writes and illustrates picture books. I read at least one, but usually two or three with my three year old son every night. Some ‘children’s books’ are a bit of a chore and the only appeal is that my son enjoys them. However, with the Jeffers books, I love them as much (perhaps even more) than he does. The artwork is amazing and the storytelling is simple but engaging and imaginative. Jeffers writes with the old saying in mind ‘don’t let the truth get in the way of a good story’.

Every time we read Oliver’s books, I switch from enjoying the stories to imaging them animated and then figuring out the best way to do that without ruining the feel of the characters. I didn’t want to just google some images and animate them, I wanted to have control over each part and make everything from scratch. I started by creating the boy and animating a simple walk cycle.


Then I recreated the Penguin and animated his wings flapping. I then composited the Penguin in to the boy’s scene and recreated the cover from ‘Up and Down’. Whenever we read ‘The Incredible Book Eating Boy’ I’m overwhelmed with the amount of amazing artwork and end up with a million things I want to recreate but one always stands out – the monster book in Henry’s dream.

I’m not sure which scene I’ll pick next. I had wondered about animated scenes that are completely original using the boy and the penguin. Of course, I need time to do that and it’s usually quite a rarity to find ‘spare’ time…but if I do, I’ll certainly have another crack and bringing some of the Oliver Jeffers characters to life.

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