One of our first big challenges was determining how best to depict the iconic architecture of Grounds so that children could immediately recognize the actual buildings when they see them in person. The University of Virginia, particularly the Rotunda and the Lawn, have been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site. UNESCO identifies localities of cultural heritage that are “of outstanding value to humanity.” In short, the neo-classical architecture of UVA and Monticello, Mr. Jefferson’s adult home, reflects the ideas, principles, and values of Mr. Jefferson and ought to be preserved for posterity. For a more thorough explanation of the UNESCO designation, please click here.
In order to capture the detail and design of the architecture, Adam and I toyed with the idea of using photographs of the main buildings as the background to the illustrations, onto which filters and his talented gift would be applied to achieve the desired effect. Ultimately, we shied away from this approach to preserve the artistry of the project. I believe we chose wisely and that Adam brilliantly depicted UVA for our little readers!