Kystoforski, Andrej 1943-
Kystoforski, Andrej 1943-
Born 1943, in Poland. Education: Academy of Fine Arts (Warsaw, Poland), master's degree.
Illustrator, graphic designer, animator, and art director.
Cameron Thomas, Mystery of the Lake ("Shipwrecked on the Island of Skree" series), MGT Publishing, 2004.
George Elliott, The Boy Who Loved Bananas, Kids Can Press (Toronto, Ontario, Canada), 2005.
Pat Hancock, Strange and Spooky Stories: A Haunted Canada Book, Scholastic Canada (Markham, Ontario, Canada), 2005.
Gena K. Gorrell, In the Land of the Jaguar: South America and Its People, Tundra Books (Toronto, Ontario, Canada), 2007.
Elizabeth MacLeod, Helen Keller, Kids Can Press (Toronto, Ontario, Canada), 2007.
Elizabeth MacLeod, Thomas Edison, Kids Can Press (Toronto, Ontario, Canada), 2008.
Elizabeth MacLeod, The Wright Brothers, Kids Can Press (Toronto, Ontario, Canada), 2008.
Born in Poland during World War II, children's illustrator Andrej Krystoforski attended the Academy of Fine Arts in Warsaw before beginning his career in the art world. According to comments the artist made on the Embracing the Child Web site, he became interested in art at a young age, pouring over book illustrations in his father's library. Teachers, too, encouraged his interests, Krystoforski noted, and he doodled "everywhere, even in math and physics notebooks to make them less boring." After visiting the United States on an art scholarship in the late 1970s, Krystoforski moved to the country permanently and established himself as a successful graphic designer. With a subsequent move north to Canada, he turned to work in the animation industry and began illustrating books for children.
Krystoforski's illustrations first appeared in The Boy Who Loved Bananas. Written by George Elliott, The Boy Who Loved Bananas follows a little boy named Matthew as he becomes enamored with monkeys after a trip to the zoo. Wanting to be just like his primate friends, Matthew eats only banana-based foods that monkeys would enjoy, such as banana bread, banana muffins, and banana chips. After several days on his banana diet, the youngster morphs into a monkey, much to the dismay of his parents and the delight of his classmates. Stumped doctors reassure the boy's parents that their son's interest in monkeys will eventually wane and his human form will be restored. However, another trip to the zoo kindles an interest in a new favorite animal: the elephant. Writing in School Library Journal, Carol L. MacKay noted that Krystoforski's pictures "amplify the silliness of the story with colorful cartoon-style characters and amusing background details." In a Resource Links review, Linda Ludke praised the "humourous details" found in Krystoforski's artwork and predicted that "children will laugh out loud at Matthew's hairy transformation."
Krystoforski has also provided the illustrations for biographies of famous individuals from history, such as Helen Keller, Thomas Edison, and the Wright brothers, as well as for a reference book geared for younger readers titled In the Land of the Jaguar: South America and Its People. Featuring in-depth, age-appropriate explanations about the South American continent, In the Land of the Jaguar offers readers information about the different types of cultures, geography, and wildlife in the region. Written by Gena K. Gorrell, the volume focuses on each country in the land mass, from details about early indigenous peoples to contemporary events, including twentieth-century drug wars and widespread poverty. Many reviewers found to be In the Land of the Jaguar an excellent resource for children, both as an aid for research reports and for casual reading. The volume also earned praise for its visual appeal, with Booklist critic Hazel Rochman describing the work as a "beautifully designed volume" featuring "small, beautiful, fully captioned illustrations." Writing in School Library Journal, Frances E. Millhouser suggested that the illustrator's "vividly colored, jaunty maps and pen-and-ink drawings" complement the narrative, "encourag[ing] readers to peruse every page."
Biographical and Critical Sources
Booklist, October 1, 2007, Hazel Rochman, review of In the Land of the Jaguar: South America and Its People, p. 44.
Children's Bookwatch, December, 2007, review of In the Land of the Jaguar.
Resource Links, June, 2005, Linda Ludke, review of The Boy Who Loved Bananas, p. 4; October, 2007, Linda Irvine, review of In the Land of the Jaguar, p. 45.
School Library Journal, September, 2004, Gay Lynn Van Vleck, review of Mystery of the Lake, p. 182; June, 2005, Carol L. MacKay, review of The Boy Who Loved Bananas, p. 108; November, 2007, Frances E. Millhouser, review of In the Land of the Jaguar, p. 146.
Embracing the Child Web site,http://www.embracingthechild.org/ (December 29, 2008), "Andrej Krystoforski, Illustrator."