My Father’s Dragon

by Crystal Lyon, SUNY Cortland, December 11, 2008

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My Father’s Dragon, written by Ruth Stiles Gannett, and illustrated by Ruth Chrisman Gannett, was my favorite childhood story.  I remember making the dragon out of a milk carton and painting it when I was in elementary school.  I re-illustrated the cover in illustration class.  And again, I am asked to re-illustrate my favorite  children’s book.  As I began re-drawing what I felt to be the key images that told the story about a boy named Elmer Elavator and his dragon, I realized that I didn’t want to change the style.  Everything I drew ended up being too adult for the feeling of the book.  So I began to soften the original images, and decided to color them.  I think that is truly the only change I would like to make, is to see it in color.  It is such an adventurous book filled with interesting characters and situations.  Because of this book, I have been hooked on fantasy even now as an adult, preferring fiction and the feeling of escape from mundane reality and following another’s story.  When I was a kid, I wanted to have my very own dragon so I could have interesting and fun adventures too!  Now, I create my own adventures through my own story telling.

By Crystal Lyon

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