An avid naturalist, Charley Harper enjoyed painting the insects, plants, birds, and animals he loved. He masterfully portrayed a host of species using simple lines and shapes. From the smallest lady beetle to the largest monkey, Harper conveyed not only the form and coloration of his subjects but also their personality. His minimalist approach did not reduce the impact of his art; instead, it offered a bold and unique interpretation of the world around him.
Born in rural West Virginia, Harper (1922–2007) was always drawn to nature; as a boy he would traipse across the local hills, sketchbook in hand, stopping to draw whatever seized his attention. Studies at the Art Academy of Cincinnati and the Art Students League of New York led him to his unmistakable style, refined during his long and noteworthy art career spent largely in Ohio. Several creatures in this coloring book are from the 1991 poster he created for the Nature Center at Shaker Lakes (Cleveland), in celebration of the area's wildlife and the Nature Center's many years of "serendipity in the suburbs."
Inside are twenty-two pages of Harper's playful critters, with reproductions of his full-color illustrations on the inside of the front and back covers. We've also included a blank page at the end so you, like Harper, can sketch the world around you.
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