Why Write A Story About the Beach?

I experienced the mighty Atlantic Ocean for the first time when I was a young girl exploring the beach with my aunt, uncle, and cousins. Whether it is building a sandcastle, watching the birds soar and dip in the sky, surfing the waves, or picking up shells— there is always movement, color, and action on the beach.

For several years prior to the writing of Janey’s story, I had been teaching the children and adults in my classes how to draw and paint with watercolor pencils. As I reflected on how much fun we had that year creating lighthouse and beach pictures, the idea of the story came to me.

So I combined my memory of family and the beach to write a story of the joy of drawing, reflected in the experience of a little girl on the beach drawing all she saw around her with watercolor pencils.

I chose the North Carolina Outer Banks for the location of Janey’s story. Grace Baity, a delightful art student, and her mother lived a week with me in the yellow beach house while we took pictures for the story. 

I went back to the Outer Banks two more summers, visiting the people and historic sites. Using these photos, I was able to draw all the illustrations from real life for the story.

I have chosen a few watercolor pencil drawings from my collection so you can order them in prints to share with friends and family!

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