I rarely have a need to shop for children. However, I did stumble upon a really great find this past weekend that I would have loved to have been able to gift this to a 4 year old kid: Little Aaron’s Me and My Friends, from Pictoplasma. It’s quirky cover caught me, as I was staring at some photography books: a sassy looking 1970s child in front of a car with a…large, animated 1950s greaser monster? I was taken aback, trying to figure out if this was some silly fake kids book for adults or a silly real kids book for kids. Regardless, I grabbed it and was captured by the work of “Little Aaron” (designer and animator Aaron Stewart).
A picture driven kids book, manufactured to be both “spit and spill” proof, the book features photos of Aaron Stewart as a child around town in 1970s Wichita, Kansas (where he grew up). The photos are fairly common, featuring images of a child by a lake, a child playing on a rocking horse, or a child reading to himself on the ground. From here, Stewart infuses fantastic friends, animated from his imagination now, into the photos. The result is the creation of childhood friends “you have always dreamed of.”
The book would be an awesome gift for a kid. But, because Stewart’s work is so fantastic and full of imagination, it’d probably make a pretty cool gift for an adult, too.