Magazine article The Advocate (The national gay & lesbian newsmagazine)

Family Guy: Todd Parr Translates a Kid's-Eye Point of View into a Successful Career in Children's Literature and TV

Magazine article The Advocate (The national gay & lesbian newsmagazine)

Family Guy: Todd Parr Translates a Kid's-Eye Point of View into a Successful Career in Children's Literature and TV

Article excerpt

Todd Parr likes the fog and sea lions. His favorite color is blue. He likes macaroni and cheese and loves his dog, Bully. He also likes to paint. Parr's simple, childlike, "less is more" approach to life has served him well. Since 1999 this award-winning children's book author and illustrator has been known by preschoolers and adults worldwide for his positive and humorous series of picture books.

Each book offers his bold, almost Haringesque signature style incorporating primary colors with messages that encourage and empower children to communicate their feelings while embracing their individuality. In fact, many people think his work is done by a child and not an adult. "At first I was a little hurt," confesses the gay author, "but now I realize that this is my strength." March saw the release of Parr's latest works, The Grandma Book and The Grandpa Book (Little, Brown)--a celebration of cool, hip, fun-loving grandparents--as well as his second Daytime Emmy nomination (Outstanding Children's Animated Program) for ToddWorld, a show watched by millions on the Discovery Kids Channel. Not bad for a shy kid from Rock Springs, Wyo.

Parr, 43, credits his supportive family and life experiences as the strongest influences on his career and the messages within his work--particularly his grandmother, who introduced him to the Dr. …

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