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Korean Authors

 

Writer Lee Suzy

 

2021.08.02

 

 

Please introduce yourself to our readers.

 

Hello, I’m Lee Suzy. I’m a picture book artist. Nice to meet you.

 

What kind of person do you think a picture book Artist is?

 

I think that a picture book writer is a person who builds and plays with the power of pictures and creates a story in a book. I was interested in the medium of books. Rather than just pieces of paper that contain a story. I’m also interested in books with power. In my case, I am interested in pictures with such power. In that sense, for me, “pictures” and “books” are equally important in picture books.

 

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River (BIR)

 

 

How did you become a picture book artist?

 

I majored in painting at art college. I drew on large canvases and after graduating, I wanted to keep painting. I was thinking about how to make a living doing this and discovered the genre of picture books. I brought my portfolio to the publisher and said I wanted to work. I thought I would just draw pictures to match some text. When I started, I thought it would be as simple as this. But then I realized it was a difficult job. The more I saw of great picture books, the more I realized it’s a fun, deep, and mysterious world. I wanted to excel at this job and at the same time to study the genre more deeply.

 

I heard that you studied in the UK.

 

Before then, I just received the texts and drew pictures to illustrate them. But then I got tired of this formula and I wanted to create my own. While I was interested in writing my own for my work, I found out about book art. I had no idea what that was. But “book art” contains my favorite two words, so I wanted to study it. There was a short program in the UK which made me decide to study and work on my own pieces in that time.

 

What are your interests these days?

 

One of the things that particularly interests me for picture books is children’s play. I really want to describe how children play. In my previous books Wave (BIR) and Shadow (BIR) I focus on a child’s play. That’s one of my interests. I’m also interested in music. So how to visually express the music? I want to combine these two. I’m trying to do a picture book like music expressed through children’s play.

 

?

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Wave, Shadow

 

 

Why do you make picture books without text?

 

It’s a weakness that there’s nothing to read because there’s no writing. And at the same time it’s a very interesting area. I want to focus on that. So, if there is nothing to read, you will try to find what to read in the details of the picture. However, the context of how to read writing is in the order of the words. Pictures don’t actually have an order. I think of them as a whole. Because there are scattered things to read. Read each picture one by one and turn to the next page. When another image appears the connection is made in the mind. The reader has to make the narrative herself. I think it’s possible because having no text is a very attractive way to do it. I like that; that’s why I work on wordless picture books.

 

Do you have any books you are particularly attached to?

 

If you ask a writer about their favorite work, don’t they answer “everything”? Me, too! I think mine are my most recent works. Because my past work contained my past concerns and issues, and now they are resolved. Since my most recent works contain the “real me”, my favorites are the works I have completed most recently.

 

What are your plans for the future?

 

I always say that it’s a problem because there are so many things I want to do. How to branch out the story, and my sketchbook, they are waiting for me. It is as if they are asking when I will take them out. If time allows, I want to continue to do this. There are actually some works that I do alone. In some cases, I take a text and illustrate it for them. I’ve just finished two types of book and I’m working on a new book. There are also two exhibits scheduled. I think I’m going to have a busy life for now.

 

 

* The interview and video were produced as a part of the K-Book Online Marketing Support Project of the Publication Industry Promotion Agency of Korea (KPIPA).

 

 


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