Christian Robinson’s Illustrations Have Character!

Christian Robinson became one of my favorite illustrators when I was first introduced to Gaston, a picture book written by Kelly DiPucchio.  (Find him in our catalogauthor website | Instagram)

Gaston tells the story of a French Bulldog who isn't quite sure if he fits in with his French Poodle family. Robinson's illustrations capture the adorable antics of Gaston and his sisters with complete hilarity! My aunt can attest to the endearing appeal of Gaston, as it is one of her grandchildren's most requested storytime books.

School's First Day of School

His picture book School's First Day of School was written by Tucson's very own Adam Rex, author of The True Meaning of Smekday (which became the DreamWorks film entitled Home). With bold and whimsical simplicity, Robinson brings to life one of Rex's most epic literary characters yet: a school. Newly-built Frederick Douglass Elementary has no idea that his uneventful summer existence will suddenly change when hordes of children descend on him during his first day of school.


In Linda Ashman's Rain!, the heartwarming transformation of a grumpy old man is guided by Robinson's irresistible depiction of childish delight in a rainy, puddle filled day. In Leo, a Ghost Story, by Mac Barnett, a young spirit trying to find his way in a living person's world is charmingly portrayed by Robinson's subtly comical drawings. The somber and reverent tone of Margaret Wise Brown's The Dead Bird is conveyed with childlike wonder in Robinson's sweet and gentle imagery.


Robinson's unique visual characterization is not limited to fiction. His artwork has been featured in the longer biographical works Josephine: The Dazzling Life of Josephine Baker, by Patricia Hruby Powell and Harlem's Little Blackbird: The Story of Florence Mills, by Renée Watson. Subtle facial expressions and background changes in the illustrations advance the narrative of real people and their stories with moving impact.

The Smallest Girl in the Smallest Grade

Diversity is a central element in Robinson's visual storytelling, as shown in The Smallest Girl in the Smallest Grade, by Justin Roberts and Last Stop on Market Street, by Matt de la Peña. Readers and Storytellers alike will find that Christian Robinson has something to offer everyone!

Here are the links to the rest of his books that I mentioned:


The Dead Bird

Harlem's Little Blackbird

Last Stop on Market Street

And you may also want to check out Adam Rex's The True Meaning of Smekday and Home!