The Art of Narelle Oliver single work   interview  
Issue Details: First known date: 2009 2009
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In response to Lawn's questions regarding her artistic vision, innovative techniques and interest in natural Australian history, Oliver says her work is created through the 'intriguing relationship between words and pictures' and how 'they work either together or against each other as different points of view in a narrative' (4). Lawn asks Oliver about her 'vision and vocation' which, through her strong artistic style and celebratory designs of Australian indigenous animals, produces texts that are a 'melding of non-fiction and fiction' (5). Oliver says she has been fascinated by indigenous adaptations of Australian native animals since early childhood and this interest developed further when she studied biology. With her first picture book, Leaf Tail she wanted to introduce young readers to 'some of the less-well-known Australian creatures' but 'did not want to write a straight information book' (5). Instead, she wanted to explore the creative potential of the adaptive features to be found among many creatures - design, shape, texture and pattern - in terms of storytelling and 'problem-solution scenarios' (5). Oliver has also produced picture books about imaginary and mythological creatures, for example, Mermaids Most Amazing, The Very Blue Thingamajig, and Dancing the Boom-cha-cha Boogie, however, it is mainly through her natural history picture books that she aims to capture the diversity of Australia's natural landscapes and 'instil postive feelings about these places in young Australian readers' (6). In this sense, her work is driven by the belief that 'a personal feeling and knowledge of the landscape is critical to developing a desire to preserve that landscape' (6).

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Last amended 16 Oct 2009
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