Children shown how wool figures in special Star Wars books were created during SCRF 2018

03:33 PM | 23 Apr, 2018
Children shown how wool figures in special Star Wars books were created during SCRF 2018
SHARJAH - An author who takes popular properties like Star Wars and turns them into child-friendly picture books showed off the secrets of his craft to youngsters at the Sharjah Children’s Reading Festival.

Holman Wang, a Canadian children’s author, and illustrator, showed a room packed with attentive young pupils his work and how he creates it. Children were captivated during the hour-long session where they were shown how he works not just on the famous science fiction series but also classics like Moby Dick and Pride and Prejudice.


“I got the idea with my brother a few years ago when we decided to make books that children wouldn’t normally read more interesting and accessible. I self-taught myself how to do the needlework by watching YouTube tutorials,” he said.

The stories are condensed down to 12 pictures and 12 words and are illustrated with photographs of small models intricately made with needled-felt.

He showed the audience how they were created by taking a piece of wool and then stabbing it a number of times with a needle.

“This is done so that the cotton will tangle up and catches together to create a simple ball that can then be molded by hand into other shapes and placed onto a wire frame,” he said.

The work is very time consuming and it can take up to 30 hours to complete a model of a character.

These models are then photographed in different poses and backgrounds to fit in with the scene that is being represented.

The workshop at Cultural Lab 1 took place during the 10th edition of the festival, which runs until April 28 at Expo Centre Sharjah and is themed ‘Your Future… Just a Book Away’. A range of panel discussions and workshops will run daily during the course of the festival.

The festival’s events span several programmes, under the main themes of Kids Activities, Cultural Programmes, Cultural Café, Kids' Creative Café, Social Media Café and Cookery Corner. SCRF 2018 also features a series of international theatrical performances like ‘Tuta and Monkey Cheetah’, and the ‘Island of Kids’ Area’ that combine education, fun, and entertainment to highlight the values of honesty to young visitors.

A prime highlight of the festival this year is its first ever 3D Book Exhibition, featuring 250 pop-up books from the 3D Book Centre in Forli, Italy. The books have been handpicked by the exhibition curators to represent eight different periods of time. One of SCRF’s mainstays, the Sharjah Exhibition for Children’s Books Illustrations, is featuring 355 artworks by 104 illustrators from 32 countries this year.