Celebrating reading at the 2014 San Antonio Book Festival

Highlights of the 2014 San Antonio Book Festival | San Antonio Charter MomsOn Saturday, my kids and I had a great time at the San Antonio Book Festival at the Central Library and the Southwest School of Art.

For our family, the highlight of festival was during the presentation by Joe Cepeda, a children’s book illustrator, when my kids made a connection between the creation and the enjoyment of books.

In preparation for the festival, my kids and had I checked out many picture books by authors and illustrators who would be appearing at the festival. (This earlier post has tips about searching for and requesting books from the San Antonio Public Library.)

One of the books we checked out and read was Cub’s Big World, illustrated by Cepeda. My son, F.T., was excited about Cub’s quest to find his Mom in the snowy world. In a phone interview, Cepeda talked about the craft of children’s book illustration, especially the “page turn”: the anticipation of what comes on the next page. Read more of the interview in this earlier post. At the book festival, we went to see Cepeda’s presentation in the Children’s Reading Tent. Cepeda posted examples of his work and talked about techniques, such as using lines within the picture to draw the eye to the main subject. (A famous example: Leonardo da Vinci’s The Last Supper.) Cepeda admitted that he uses family members and old family photos as models for characters, including background players in Side by Side/Lado a Lado, a book about Dolores Huerta and Cesar Chavez.

Joe Cepeda with sketch of Cesar Chavez - San Antonio Book Festival | San Antonio Charter Moms

When Cepeda posted a slide from Cub’s Big World, F.T. started jumping up and down in his chair. He was so excited to recognize a book that he had read, and to make the connection between the book and the illustrator. The relationship between reading books and creating books—to me, that is what the San Antonio Book Festival is all about.

Cepeda finished his presentation by sketching a dog using a series of simple shapes: a circle, a rectangle, a triangle, etc.

Joe Cepeda sketching a dog at the San Antonio Book Festival | San Antonio Charter Moms

In addition to Cepeda, there were many more authors and illustrators presenting; get more ideas at “Read, listen and play at the San Antonio Book Festival on April 5”, Inga Cotton, Alamo City Moms Blog, April 2, 2014.

Also on the plaza: book-themed activities from the San Antonio Museum of Art, the San Antonio Children’s Museum, and more.

Activities on the plaza at the San Antonio Book Festival | San Antonio Charter Moms

Among the exhibitors were two charter schools: Great Hearts . . .

Rachel Zanardi and Andrea Perez at Great Hearts booth at the San Antonio Book Festival | San Antonio Charter Moms. . . and IDEA Public Schools.

IDEA Public Schools at the San Antonio Book Festival | San Antonio Charter Moms

We are already looking forward to the 2015 San Antonio Book Festival.

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