A picture book about snowflakes, dreams and love, for sensitive people, brought to you by poet and children’s author Matthew Bennett Young
Reflective, meditative text.
◆ Relaxed pace of reading.
• Creates a sense of calm in the reader.
♥ Illustrations based on the beautiful photographs of snowflakes by Wilson Bentley, the first person to capture the geometric structure of snowflakes!
Snowman is a reflective, meditative text that is designed to slow down the often dramatic pace surrounding a child’s life. The intention with only a single sentence per page and the careful repetition of the snowflake motif are used to encourage a relaxed pace of reading, to create a sense of calm and to allow the reader to spend more quality time with the text.
The sense of space and the absence of multiple stimuli is purposefully non-sensational. The story, told through a conversation between a child and their parents, is one about love. It has a dreamy quality, and uses the imagery of snow to talk poetically about love.
The intention in using dreams
Dreams are used to signify the freedom that reflective thinking, imagery and metaphors can afford. The use of dreams is also to encourage the idea that images, stories and concepts can be open to other interpretations (like Maybe Colours does).
The significance of the Snowman.
Snowman could be a criticism of the gender imbalance present in many societies. In English and in most Western languages, we talk of a snow*man*. Here we have a snowman who is in need of his equal female counterpart. On the one hand, this may be a comment on the nature of interdependence between men and women, and may also imply that men are more dependent on women than is popularly realised or accepted. On the other hand, this could be an assertion of the need for a balance between male and female “snowperson” representation!
Metaphors of love
The story is a romance. However, there is the potential for the reader to consider many questions that arise from using snowflakes as a metaphor for the theme of love. The colour white (softness? coldness?), the coldness of snow (loneliness? sadness?), the melting of the snowman and woman (transience of love and life? Melting as the warmth of love?) can all give rise to discussions of many ideas about love in our lives – for winter, for activities, for family and friends.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Matthew Bennett Young is a British author and has published in many forms (picture books, flash fiction, short stories and poetry) although his big passion is for picture books. Not only does he write but sometimes he illustrates as well. He is also an artist-educator and has been teaching his inspiring workshops all over the world. He currently resides in Montreal and is a member of Artist Inspire and Culture a L’Ecole. He believes all creativity is a form of expression and is essential for wellbeing, especially now, and it takes practice!