child and polar bear, from The Ice bear by Jackie Morris

sketch of a sleeping peeping cat

a white duck in a tailcoat

Tell Me a Dragon, front cover of book by Jackie Morris, a girl feeding fairy cakes to a large blue-green dragon

Starlight Sailor, front cover, illustration by Jackie Morris, showing a child and a dog sailing in a paper boat across a sea of blue through which a blue whale swims

 

woman sleeping peacefully with a polar bear, from East of the Sun and West of the Moon

the jester from Singing to the Sun by Vivien French and Jackie Morris

snow leopard, front cover of The Snow Leopard by Jackie Morris, snow leopard head looking out of the picture, with great blue eyes

The Barefoot book of Classic Poems, front cover

How the Whale Became by Ted Hughes, front cover

Can You See a Little Bear by James Mayhew, front cover of book.

The Seal Children, front cover, showing child, Morlo, swimming with his mother, the selkie, by Jackie Morris

Lord of the Forest, front cover of book, by Caroline Pitcher and Jackie Morris, showing the face of a tiger

Little One We Knew You'd Come, illustrated by Jackie Morris, Mary and baby Jesus

Mariana and the Merchild by Caroline Pitcher, illustrated by Jackie Morris

The Snow Whale by Caroline Pitcher and illustrated by Jackie Morris

The Greatest Gift, illustrated by Jackie Morris

The Time of the Lion by Caroline Pitcher, illustrated by Jackie Morris, book cover showing a boy and a lion

Out of the Ark by Anita Ganeri, stories from world religions, illustrated by Jackie Morris

Stories from World Religions by Anita Ganeri, illustrated by Jackie Morris

Animals of the Bible by Mary Hoffman, illustrated by Jackie Morris

Miracles by Mary Hoffman, illustrated by Jackie Morris

Parables by Mary Hoffman, illustrated by Jackie Morris

Cities in the Sea by Sian Lewis, illustrated by Jackie Morris

Cantre'r Gwaelod by Sian Lewis, illustrated by Jackie Morris

Grandmother's Song, illustrated by Jackie Morris, written by Barbara Soros

Bears Beras and More Bears by Jackie Morris

Journeys Through Dreamtime by Anita Ganeri, illustrated by Jackie Morris

Stories From the Stars, illustrated by Jackie Morris

Jo's Storm by Caroline Pitcher, illustrated by Jackie Morris

 

 

 

watercolour painting of people brushing crocodile teeth, from Can You See a Little bear? by Jackie Morris and James Mayhew

Can You See a Little Bear by James Mayhew
illustrated by Jackie Morris
pub by Frances Lincoln Spring 2005

 

Chosen by Child Magazine (USA) as one of their top 50 books of the year. See review below

Can You See a Little Bear?
Text by James Mayhew, illustrations by Jackie Morris.
Steeped in dreamy surrealism, this intriguing picture book invites little ones to find the smiling polar bear tucked into each spread -- among onion-domed towers, lavishly robed circus performers, mermaid dolphin-riders, and tooth-brushing crocodiles. (As in dreams, somehow this all makes sense.) Far more than a find-the-object book, this one fires up the imagination with its lush, exotic watercolors and rhyming text: "Ducks like the rain, penguins like the snow/Here's Little Bear -- and he's putting on a show!" Frances Lincoln, $16.95.

or go to the

Child magazine web site

also by Nicholas Tucker of the Independent as one of the "Best Children's Titles for Christmas" (Dec 9th)

"They should also much enjoy Jackie Morris's luminous illustrations for Can You See a Little Bear? (Frances Lincoln, £10.99). Pleasantly written by James Mayhew, this look-and-find journey through a series of ultra-colourful settings in different countries is simply astonishing."

watercolour painting of little bear standing on a ball by Jackie Morris watercolour painting of little bear in the bath by Jackie Morris watercolour painting of little bear trying on a shoe by Jackie Morris  

Times Review of Books,17th Dec, The Way to Santa's Workshop, Amanda Craig wrote

"A lyrical mood is set by James Mayhew and Jackie Morris, in Can You See A Little Bear? (Frances Lincoln £10.99; offer £9.89). Morris illustrated one of my other favourite Christmas books, The Greatest Gift, which my children have banned me from reading aloud as it always makes me cry. This is pure jollity. A little white bear joins in a joyful procession of pipers, peacocks, acrobats, parrots and angels as they dance, fly, prance in a circus and fly off in a balloon before getting the Little Bear ready for bed in a series of rhyming couplets that are as richly mysterious as the pictures. It’s just right for getting an overexcited 5+ into bed."

For ideas of ways to enjoy Can You See a Little Bear? in class, for reading, writing, drawing, music and much much more click here

 

This book came about as a direct result of the designs for the Musicians Benevolent Trust card designs. Written by James Mayhew with these images in mind, it is a simple rhyming text for very young children. Through observing our own children and their response to books we wanted to make a book with simple language but complex images packed with details which will fascinate the inquisitive minds of young children. The book has many ambitions, including , to encourage a love of language, to engage and interest the child in following the Little Bear through his adventures, to encourage conversation between the parent and the child, and while all this sounds far too worthy, for both the reader and the child audience to have fun.
The pictures are packed with details and strange goings on as Little Bear goes off to play in the snowy world and comes home in time for a bath with crocodiles and kookaburras, and then, like all good story books, to bed.

watercolour painting for Can You See a Little Bear by James Mayhew and Jackie Morris, two bears sleeping.

With such an open text there was a lot to play with and I began the book by working out what the Little Bear looked like through playing with a series of sketches.

sketches for Can You See a Little Bear by Jackie Morris

And once the character of the Little Bear was decided on I went on to do a series of thumbnail sketches laying out the pages of the book.

sketches for Can You See a Little Bear by Jackie Morris

This is where a great deal of the thinking for the book is done. The rest was all colouring in!

watercolour painting for Can You See a Little Bear by Jackie Morris and James Mayhew, bear standing on his head with parrots and musician (not standing on their heads)

For ideas of ways to enjoy Can You See a Little Bear? in class, for reading, writing, drawing, music and much much more click here

And now Can You See a Little Bear is also available in a small, but perfectly formed new version as a board book.

Can You See a Little Bear? now a board book at 4.99 in the UK, small but like a little treasure box.

 

 

 

To buy any of the books featured on this site

  • Order from your local bookshop. Small books shops are a treasure and face strong competition from the big sellers on line who buy at huge discounts. Nothing beats browsing around in a well stocked small bookshop, where you chance upon a gem that until then you had no idea you wanted.
  • Order on line either direct from publishers or from one of the big on-line booksellers
  • If you are after one of the books that is out of print try and find it on abebooks.com They have a fantastic resource for tracking down out of print books.
  • All of these books are available from your local library.



 





 





©Jackie Morris