Waga's Big Scare by Sam Hiti

Minneapolis-based artist and illustrator Sam Hiti has recently published his first children's book, and it's a terrific little gem.  Titled "Waga's New Scare," it tells a story of a gruesome, scary monster who has suddenly "lost his scare."  With the evening hours running short, Waga must scramble to find his voice and return to his true calling - scaring all of us kids every night.

I really enjoy Sam's illustrations, which follow a fluid, almost surrealist comic-book style.  There are many brilliantly designed monsters and scary creatures, skillful compositions, and an impressive variety of layouts.  I really enjoy watching the pages, closely examining them.  At one point, Waga stretches and squirms through an impossible maze of house pipes, and it just flows, like a great jazz solo.  I'm a sucker for things like this.

Oh, and those Larry Bird and Darth Vader posters on the wall?  Nice touch.  I wish there was an Atari 2600 or Sega Genesis buried away somewhere.

There's going to be more children's books, right?  There's going to be more Waga books?  There should be more.  We should all do our part and buy Sam's book.  Here's a sample of some pages to inspire your money to escape from your wallet.  You'll probably hear them whistling the theme from "The Great Escape" while you're sleeping at night.

(P.S. Marcee, my newlywed, snapped these photos.  I promised her that I'd give her credit on the blog.  She's quite skilled with the iPhone camera, and I keep threatening to release art books as iOS apps.)

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