Ike's Incredible Ink is the debut picture book from author/illustrator Brianne Farley. A story of epic procrastination - or is it inspiration? - Farley's story is every bit as enchanting as her distinctive illustrations. Ike himself is an oddly drawn, endearing sort of blob and Farley's illustrations are layered with texture, from the warp of the watercolor paper that some of the illustrations are done on to the fabric patterns that pop up as book covers and rocket ships. Farley's work reminds me of the wonderful David Roberts, illustrator of The Dunderheads books and Andrea Beaty's excellent duo, Iggy Peck, Architect and Rosie Revere, Engineer. I can't wait to see what Farley does next! Until then, I'll tell you a little bit about Ike...
Ike is suffering from a bit of writer's block when he realizes that what he needs is his own, unique ink to write his own, unique story with. Ike heads off with his sack to collect the things that he finds share qualities with ink.
From dark shadows to floaty and soft feathers to matter from the dark side of the moon, Ike stops at nothing to collect what he needs to make his own, special ink.
After returning home with his ingredients, Ike has to MAKE his ink...
In the end, back at his desk, Ike's journey to creativity turns out to be his creative journey, and, with his new bottle of incredible ink, Ike starts to write his incredible story.
Source: Review Copy
Sadly, this quartet of books is out of print, but I just had to mention Eric Sanvoisin and Martin Matje's The Ink Drinker books because Ike's Incredible Ink reminds me so much of the creativity and inventiveness of these books as well as Matje's superb illustrations. Matje also illustrated another favorite of mine, Sara Pennypacker's The Amazing World of Stuart books, which EVERY emerging reader should own!