Gruffalo author Julia Donaldson shows the social distancing of her characters

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The Gruffalo

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Axel Scheffler and Julia Donaldson

The creators of the children’s book The Gruffalo drew their characters using social distance to help children understand the rules.

Author Julia Donaldson and illustrator Axel Scheffler created the panels as a “light” way to get the message out.

They present The Gruffalo, Stickman and The Smeds and The Smoos – all keeping a safe distance from each other.

We also see the characters helping the most vulnerable in their purchases.

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The Gruffalo was first released in 1999 and tells the story of a mouse wandering through the woods – where it foils a terrifying creature with terrible teeth and a “positional wart at the tip of its nose”.

It sold 13 million copies and was turned into an Oscar-nominated play and animation.

One of the new sketches shows the Gruffalo walking behind the mouse, accompanied by the couplet:

“Very good,” said The Gruffalo, bursting out laughing / Go ahead, I will follow two meters later. “

Image from The Stickman

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Axel Scheffler and Julia Donaldson

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Image of Smeds and Smoos

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Axel Scheffler and Julia Donaldson

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“Axel had this idea of ​​making witty sketches, each based on one of our books and each type of incorporation of a coronavirus tip,” Donaldson told BBC Breakfast on Friday.

Scheffler began the process by saying, “What can I do as an illustrator? In these troubled times.

“I am currently working on a free non-fiction e-book on the coronavirus, which is serious and informative and probably more important than that and which will be released next week,” he said.

” [But] I wanted to do something light and cheer up people and I thought, “How about I imagine our characters in corona situations? »»

“It is really more entertainment than serious information,” he added.

Image from A Squash and A Squeeze

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Axel Scheffler and Julia Donaldson

In addition to social estrangement, the characters emphasize the importance of exercise and making video calls to family members.

Donaldson hopes the images will highlight best practices and help with home schooling, without being seen as “preaching.”

During the lockdown, the author also produces a weekly program on The Gruffalo’s Facebook page, reading stories, poems and songs.

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