Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Reef Roosters and the Fiji People

from w
Instead of crying into my breakfast cereal milk about the sad things happening in Fiji, I will instead post an article from today's Fiji Times about a book recently published and launched this week in Fiji. Good news. Way to go. Sharon Light's website includes dozens of samples of her paintings on masi - bright, romanticized, positive aspects of Fiji's flowers, animals, birds, fish, shells and people.

Artist releases first children's book
Thursday, July 19, 2007

Sharon Light and Ratu Joni Madraiwiwi during the book launch in Suva yesterday
CHILDREN now have the opportunity to read about one of the favourite legends of Fiji after the launch of a children's book by local artist, Sharon Light.

The Reef Roosters and the Fiji People was launched by former Vice-President Ratu Joni Madraiwiwi at the Hilton Special School in Suva yesterday.

Ms Light said the book was a vibrantly colourful interpretation of one of Fiji's favourite legends.

"I grew up listening to these tales and legends about our reefs, but I noticed that there is no resource for today's children to enjoy these stories, so I decided to write a book," she said.

Ms Light said the book would bring Fiji's coastal reefs alive with local dialogue and exciting, colourful pictures that children around the world were sure to enjoy.

She said the book told the story of why Fiji Roosters had the unique habit of crowing whenever the tide was rising when the elsewhere in the world, roosters crowed only as dawn approached.

"This is the first in a series and I have already started work on the second which should be out in a couple of months," she said.

"What makes me happy is knowing that these tales are now able to be enjoyed and appreciated by a new generation, and are much less likely to be forgotten."

Ms Light donated 10 books to the Hilton Special School library yesterday.

The book is available for sale at the University of the South Pacific bookstore and Bookmasters on Victoria Parade, in central Suva.

Some of the characters introduced by Ms Light include Star-fish Diva', the Sea-Snake Band' (made up of a trio of banded sea snakes) that perform at Sand-Crab's Disco' and the Roosters.

"The Reef People And The Fiji Roosters is a traditional Fijian folktale brought to life by Ms Light," Ratu Joni said.

He said it was a story about reef creatures whose lives were made miserable by three roosters, and how they got their own back and lived happily ever after.

"Sharon Light is not only a talented and well-known artist in Fiji and the Pacific. She is now venturing into writing and illustrating story books for children.

"This is her first creation and it is a delightful one.

"The illustrations are a riot of colour and will appeal to the target audience.

"The tale itself is an enchanting one. As we are an island people, our young will relate readily to the creatures that inhabit our seas close to shore," he said.

"We do not have to go to other countries to learn about what is around us."


Wilson said...

Way to go! :)

The lady Sharon Light is my best buddy's mother, and on saturday afternoon visits to his place, i've often had the chance to take a peek at the drawings and paintings and see them come to life :)

Great to see some local content being developed for the kids, something that they can relate to! :D

Peceli and Wendy's Blog said...

Wilson, there is a lot of great art work being done in Fiji it seems - Oceania institute at USP and the students at FIT. And Islanders in Auckland and Melbourne also.
I don't hear anything about the teachers-in-training at Nasinu. Do they still train art teachers there - plus music plus phys ed.? When I taught art in Fiji, the students produced some stunning artwork but that was a long time ago.