Wer ist eigentlich Rūta Briede? Und was mag/macht sie für Kinderbücher? Drei Fragen an die Künstlerin aus Lettland.
– How did you start to illustrate books for children (and young people)?
It all started when I began to work as stage designer at theatre. It was very hard for me to accept that almost nothing was happening as I planned to: Because so many people is involved in a play’s creation – director, actors, technical people, administration etc. And all share their opinion not only loudly, but also in the way they are realizing your ideas and concepts on stage. It all was so out of control for me that when I saw an “Open Call” for Latvian Kuš! comics magazine, I couldn’t resist to participate, because it would be only me carry out my ideas on paper. However now I am back to theatre and it doesn’t seem so bad for me anymore. Maybe sometimes it still does. Then I draw.
– Which of your books should everybody be familiar with (and why)?
Well, I hope that this or next year at publishing house Liels un mazs will be publishing my book „The Queen of Seagulls“ and the reason why everybody should read it would be very simple – it will be my first picture book, drawn and written by me.
– Which theme or motif would you love to work on in a children’s book some day?
At this point of my creative life I believe that personal experience is something that should be shared with children. Just for them to know, that grownups had gone through every stage of early life, too; the same phases, which children are going through right now.
But if I must be more precise – I think it would be interesting to use „problems“ as a motif: How that huge amount of differently created grownup life „problems“ looks like from a point of a child. Does they really looks like a real „problems“ for them? Where „problems“ comes from? Maybe they look like huge backpacks daily carried by grownups? Or like a dark cloud right up to one head raining occasionally a „problem rain“? Can we scare all problems away? And if it really would be a book it has to have a very unproblematic, positive ending.
Aber wenn ich genauer sein müsste, dann denke ich, dass es interessant wäre, „Probleme“ als Motiv zu wählen: Wie würde die riesige Menge von Erwachsenen-Problemen unterschiedlicher Herkunft wohl aus Sicht eines Kindes wirken? Wirken sie wirklich wie echte „Probleme“ auf sie? Wo kommen „Probleme“ her? Vielleicht wirken sie wie ein riesiger Rucksack, den Erwachsene täglich mit sich herumtragen? Oder wie eine dunkle Wolke genau über dem eigenen Kopf, die gelegentlich einen „Problem-Regen“ herausregnet? Können wir alle Probleme verscheuchen? Und wenn das wirklich ein Buch werden würde, müsste es sehr unproblematisch und positiv ausgehen.