For just about 20 years, Tyndale has published multiple books featuring four adorable kids. The line is called Little Blessings and has been featured on greeting cards, novelty items and of course books. We sat down to talk with Kucharik about this line that still brings joy to countless kids, parents and caretakers.
Tyndale Kids: How did you get started illustrating Little Blessings?
Elena Kucharik: Tyndale’s children’s art director at the time saw a Christmas card I had done from American Greeting and she loved the little children. …I was interested in working for a publisher illustrating children’s books [so the rest is history!]
Tyndale Kids: What has been one of your favorite Little Blessings illustrations? Why?
Elena Kucharik: I have a lot I really like….One I really enjoyed doing was based on Norman Rockwell’s famous Triple Self-Portrait. It is in God Loves You and shows all four characters with easels. I really enjoyed interpreting it. I’ve loved doing every illustration in the Little Blessings series. Doing this kind of illustration is what makes me the happiest—these sweet drawings, this type of art.
Tyndale Kids: What has been one of your favorite Little Blessings books? Why?
Elena Kucharik: I always liked Are Angels Real? It is very challenging to illustrate…there are so many interpretations of what an angel is.
Tyndale Kids: Do you see yourself or any others in the characters? Did you model them after anyone?
Elena Kucharik: Zoe reminds me of my youngest daughter, who was a swimmer. There are several illustrations of Zoe in the water. Kaitlyn is more of an older sister and she reminds me of my oldest daughter.
Tyndale Kids: How have you shared the books and your art work with your grandkids? How have they responded?
Elena Kucharik: I gave all 4 of my grandchildren full sets of my books. Our granddaughters, especially, loved them. My oldest granddaughter is an avid reader and she is only in kindergarten. Her little sister gets the books out too. They have really enjoyed them. It is great for me to see them [with the books].
Tyndale Kids: As an illustrator, what other types of work have you done? What has been your favorite/most memorable project to work on?
Elena Kucharik: Obviously Care Bears and Little Blessings. I also did some illustration work for Pepsi years ago and I enjoyed that. [Kucharik was lead artist and developer for the Care Bears line]
Tyndale Kids: Anything else that might interest moms who purchase Little Blessings books/or are considering purchasing them?
Elena Kuchark: [These books are perfect for] preschool through first grade. Our granddaughters really love them. Their mother says Little Blessings are their favorite books. I think it is because they can relate to some of the situations and the characters.
To see all of the great Little Blessings products, visit Tyndale.com.