Cultivating Interview 4

You collaborated with James A. Owen on those fabulous drawings. They add a really fun element to this book and I especially love the fact that there is a hidden bandersnatch in every illustration. Far and away, my favorite is the one of Lewis at Magdalen College. The quality of the illustrations and the intrigue they add enhances the beautiful production of the book. They remind me of those cool drawings we all loved as kids where we had to look for the hidden objects in the picture. It still comes across as a kind of visual magic!

I know, right? And I was thrilled at the chance to work with James A. Owen. I know him best for his series of fantasy novels called The Chronicles of the Imaginarium Graphica, but he has accomplished a whole lot more. His books have been translated into more than twenty languages, and more than a million copies are in print.

James has many talents, but what I love best are his incredibly detailed line drawings. His work has the texture and complexity of old turn-of-the-century etchings. For Bandersnatch, we decided to feature some of the Inklings in some of our favorite Oxford locations: Huge Dyson at the Eagle and Child pub, for example, and Warren Lewis in the doorway of the Kilns. There’s Christopher Tolkien at the family home on Northmoor Road, and Owen Barfield on Addison’s Walk. James did a full-page drawing for each chapter, and these images are just gorgeous!

This question-and-answer is part of a larger interview conducted by Lancia Smith with Dr. Diana Glyer in January 2016 on “Cultivating the Good, the True, and the Beautiful.” To read the full interview and gain further insights into creative collaboration, click here.

About Diana Glyer

Diana Pavlac Glyer is an award-winning writer who has spent more than 40 years combing through archives and studying old manuscripts. She is a leading expert on C.S. Lewis and J.R.R. Tolkien; her book The Company They Keep changed the way we talk about these writers. Her scholarship, her teaching, and her work as an artist all circle back to one common theme: creativity thrives in community. Her new book is BANDERSNATCH: C.S. Lewis, J.R.R. Tolkien, and the Creative Collaboration of the Inklings.

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