As a “foody” I love writing children’s stories about food.
In my book, Purim Goodies I wrote about some treats that Jewish folks send as gifts during the holiday of Purim. I researched old favorites and discovered that besides the good old hamantaschen, there are also other treats that might not have made it to the popularity of this one triangular cookie, stuffed with just about everything but never the less, are super delicious. Baked goods such as date & nut torte, taigalach, kindle and strudel will surely whet your appetite.
I also wrote about the tradition of giving food to the poor during Purim in my article, Queen Esther and Me, published in March of this year in Highlights for Children.
But writing about food is challenging. How many times could you say, “yummy”, “delicious” or “tasty” in one story?
Recently, I had tons of fun writing a children’s story about a greasy falafel. In the text, I also mentioned some other Middle Eastern dishes. The challenge was how to convey the specific taste or texture of a certain food, not by serving or eating it but by adding salt & pepper to the descriptions and serving each dish on literary platters.
As I researched the internet for interesting descriptions, I discovered many sites that compiled words that best describe foods and tastes.
These are very helpful in putting cinnamon & spice & everything nice into your writing:
I was blown away by a fashion show at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, NYC. The show is entitled Manus & Machina and while the exhibit consists of unbelievable women’s cloths, the statement that it conveys is much more fundamental than a fashion statement.
Manus, or haute couture refers to garments that are painstakingly created by hand. From stitching to fabric pleating, to beading, lacing and embroidering.
This show is a collection of cloths where the old fashioned skills are combined with modern technology from the good old sewing machine to sophisticated lasers that cut intricate flowers out of plastic sheets to decorate an amazing gown, machine printed rhinestones that decorate a hand stitched 20 foot train of a wedding dress and state of the art computerized pleating devices that create the most amazing effects of colorful fans on sleeves and skirts of beautiful ensembles.
For us artists and illustrators who work both traditionally and digitally, this exhibit is all about the essence of art today. when we smear real paint on a canvas, scan our images , add textures in photoshop, print it, sketch something in charcoal on top, change the scale on our computers, print again and add more details by hand , we are celebrating the freedom that is bestowed upon us with manus & machina.