Thursday, February 09, 2012

A Note on Fairy Tales

Little Mermaid

I love fairy tales. I remember sitting down with my family every Sunday night to watch Shelly Duvall's Faerie Tale Theatre on our pbs station.

My brother and I loved them. My favorite was the "Six Dancing Princesses" (I think because they had pretty dresses). But we all loved "The Princess Who Never Laughed" and "The Boy Who Left Home to Find Out About the Shivers" We still quote them to this day.

("e=mc not squared" So. Funny.)

Anyway... I think Faerie Tale Theatre + Disney started my love for fairy tales.

In high school I loved going to the library and checking out books from the J398's I loved reading the fairy tales and looking at the beautiful illustrations.

Three of my favorite fairy tale illustrators happen to be: P.J. Lynch, Trina Hyman, and Lisbeth Zwerger (I think I've mentioned this before but it never hurts to do so again. :)

My art is heavily influenced by them.

Now when I need info about fairy tales I always go to It has so much fairy tale info I don't think I'll ever get sick of it. Here is the annotated Little Mermaid. On the site you can find not only text of the tale but illustrations, histories, similar tales across cultures and current retellings of the tales. It's so fabulous.

And just in case you were wondering, my current favorite is The Three Spinners , a tale similar to Rumpelstiltskin

What are some of your fairy tale memories. When was the first time you ever remember hearing a classic fairy tale?

Love this art? Buy Prints or Cards and Gifts illustrated by Manelle.


  1. I actually watched some Fairy Tale Theater with Darian the other day...

    I'm thinking of doing a full-fledged fairy tale for my next NaNoWriMo project. Very timely post!

  2. cool. Thanks. I think Darian told me he had you watch the princess and the pea. I think that one is so funny. Something I didn't notice as a kid.

  3. I watched Fairy Tale Theater too! And I'm familiar with all of the books you posted --those illustrators are my favorites too!

    When I was very young, I had a fairy tale collection that I LOVED. It was the book that I took under my covers with a flashlight, pretending I could read, when I was supposed to be asleep. The illustration I always remember is from Donkeyskin, where the girl is stirring the cake batter to make a cake for the prince and her ring falls in. I'll forever remember Donkeyskin as the ring in the cake story.

  4. Diana that's great. I don't remember that part of the story. I'll have to look it up again.

  5. Yay! I love this post and I love fairy tales! We used to record fairy tale theater I was little onto VHS tapes! I love them so much! I think the six dancing princesses has always been my favorite too, though I liked Cinderella as well, also probably because of pretty dresses. (Though I never liked the prince in that one, he always seemed so short and so much younger than her! It wasn't till I grew up a bit that I learned he was played by Matthew Broderick. Lol!) One of my very favorite tales to quote is actually Puss in Boots. My little brother and I used to think it was so funny how that little herald guy would follow them around and blow his trumpet and then repeat what they had said. Our favorite thing to quote was "Dun-da-da-daaa! Mincemeat." I still quote that in lieu of saying "Tada!" or "Voila!"
    Also, when I was quite small (Maybe three or four) I remember the first time my Mom took us to the new library in Taylorsville and I would look through the children's books. My first loves were the Angelina Ballerina books because of the pretty costumes she wore and the colorful illustrations. Then one day I remember I decided to find out where my older sisters were. I found them in the last aisle of the children's section and it was there that I discovered fairy tale picture books. From that point on I never when to she "short" shelves again. I would head to the fairy tale section and collect a huge pile based solely upon whether I thought the illustrations were pretty, and then I'd sit on the window seat and look through the pictures until my Mom came for me, at which time I knew I had to choose only my favorite few from the pile. Then at home my Dad would read them to me. He's always been good at reading aloud. Doing voices and all that. I still do the same thing when I go to the library. :}



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