Illustrator and Author George O’Connor Visits St. B’s
St. B’s students were treated to a visit from illustrator and author George O’Connor on Friday, January 18.
Fourth grader Alexi M. started off the assembly with a terrific introduction. He shared highlights from Mr. O’Connor’s impressive career and discussed how Mr. O’Connor’s books made an impression on him.
When Mr. O’Connor took the stage, he shared his passion for Greek mythology and gave the boys an inside look at his creative process. He showed the boys some black-and-white sketches of drawings and described how he was able to transform them into final, full-colored images. He explained that when he draws, he tries to sketch quickly to keep himself from editing himself too much. He often draws the same subject quickly over and over again until he creates an image that works. He has found when he allows himself to fail and make mistakes he actually produces better artwork in the end. He encouraged the boys to try drawing the same thing at least five times in a row to see what happens.
Mr. O’Connor’s passion for Greek mythology was sparked when he was in fourth grade and his class studied many of the Greek myths and learned about the gods. For his oral report in that class, Mr. O’Connor dressed up as Hermes and presented drawings he had made that told some of the myths that included Hermes. He continued to study Greek gods and over time developed his unique style of mythological graphic novels that is represented in series such as Olympians. He has fun depicting the Greek gods as superheroes and is grateful that his job is something he really enjoys. While he was on stage, he re-enacted several dramatic moments from specific myths, much to the delight of the boys.
He ended his talk by asking a St. B’s student to time him as he drew one of his quick drawings. His 26-second sketch has been transported to St. B’s library, where it will be treasured by some of Mr. O’Connor’s biggest fans.