|The first illustrated Anansi storybook was by Pamela
Coleman Smith, published in 1899. It was titled "Annancy
Stories". She was born in London, England to an American
merchant, Charles Edward Smith from Brooklyn, NY and a
Jamaican mother, Corinne Coleman. The family moved to
|Jamaica where her father was employed by the colonial
government to help to build the island's railroad. This is
where she became more acquainted with her island's strong
tradition of Anansi storytelling. Pamela heard Anansi stories
from her Jamaican nurse, often one of a local child's earliest
confidants. She attended Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, New York
from 1893 to 1897 where she honed her skills as an
illustrator. A socially connected artist, she is best known for
designing the Rider-Waite-Smith deck of divinatory tarot
cards for Arthur Edward Waite.
In the early 1920's American folklorist Martha Warren
Beckwith collected and published an impressive number of
similar Anansi stories told to her by various informants from
many locations in the island. These stories are printed in the
variety of Jamaican vernacular of that period.
|Print this and...
DRAW ANANSI'S PORTRAIT IN 9 EASY STEPS
(For all ages)
[Materials: Paper, #2 pencil, black (fine or medium) marker, color markers (or crayons, or color
pencils), and a mirror.]
However, before drawing Anansi you may first need a WARM-UP EXERCISE.
|CLICK MY PIX
|For centuries artists have drawn images of Anansi
the Spider. There are as many versions of the
spider-man as there are books about him.
There is even a traditional Anansi Ghanaian hair
style that his wife Aso wears.
|Aso (in her Anansi hair
style)with their son Intikuma