Have a holly, jolly corgi

Local children’s author deems corgis the stars of the holidays

By Lisa Bennett

Photo: Local author Kathy Moulton’s book “The Twelve Days of Corgis” uses corgis to illustrate the traditional Christmas song “Twelve Days of Christmas”

What do adorable corgis and Christmas have in common? No, it’s not a pun about how Great Uncle George looks like a Corgi in the family Christmas album (though that would be pretty funny). Believe it or not, corgis and Christmas co-star in a fun, whimsical children’s book by local author Kathy Moulton, “The Twelve Days of Corgis.” The colorfully illustrated book draws its inspiration from the original “Twelve Days of Christmas,” a cumulative carol whose current version is based on a 1909 arrangement by English composer, Frederic Austin. The original lyrics first appeared in print in 1780 as part of a children’s book called “Mirth without Mischief” and has been a family favorite ever since. In Moulton’s version, a number of delightful corgis appear in various scenes, each representing a verse of the song—with a twist.

“I use corgis instead of all the other things” comments Moulton. From “a corgi beneath a bare tree” to “five royal rascals” and more, her book is an adorable compilation of whimsy and vibrant color.

Perhaps one of the most unique aspects of the book is just how well Moulton captures the endearing personalities of corgis. From their cute little “stubby nubs” (referring to their short tails), to those “royal rascals” smirking at you from the page, it’s safe to say most corgi owners could relate to some of the antics highlighted in the book.

When asked how she came up with the idea for her book, Moulton responds, “A couple of years ago we got some corgis and we started doing some corgi things, which has been a hit.” She adds, “It just felt right.” Her experience as a corgi mom shines brilliantly in the book’s pages, where one can really feel her love for her canine companions.

Moulton has always loved art. Her first inspiration came from Walt Disney, and blossomed as she grew.

“I’ve always done art, ever since I was a little kid. I studied art in high school and went briefly to the Dayton Art Institute,” Moulton says.

As her artistic talents grew, so did her desire to expand and try new things. She came up with the idea for her current works of art in the early 2000s when she became intrigued by the use of computers for art at work.

“In the early 2000s, I had been doing house plans for local builders on the computer. I started wondering if I could do my artwork on the computer and kind of taught myself that,” she recalls. “I just sort of worked at it slowly, then created a number of pictures about Yellow Springs but with my silly take on it.”

After a couple of shows at the Winds Cafe in 2007 and 2008, and after rejoining the Village Artisans, Moulton began working on her books.

“I always did child-friendly images and I liked doing animals because I’m an animal lover,” Moulton says, “so I started drawing animals doing people-like things. Usually there’s a joke or a pun that has to do with the town of Yellow Springs. For Antioch, I have owls graduating because owls are supposed to be wise,” laughs Moulton. “But they’re wearing shoes because when I first read the college catalog about Antioch, the only rule mentioned was that shoes had to be worn at graduation, so I made my owls wearing shoes.”

Moulton’s love affair with Yellow Springs started when she moved to Ohio from Connecticut in 1972 with her husband so that he could attend Antioch College. She fell in love with the quaint little town almost immediately and has loved it ever since. Following shows at the Winds Cafe, Moulton began to compile her artwork that showcased Yellow Springs into a book, which she later published. The book, “My Town,” depicts lively animals doing very silly, human things throughout various parts of Yellow Springs.

“I decided to put a little history of what I know of the town in and it turned out to be sort of a memoir of coming here and living here and the best things I see in Yellow Springs,” Moulton explains.

Like “My Town,” many of Moulton’s works of art are sentimental. Other works, such as, “A View From You” and “Calico Kittens” are written from heart and history. “A View From You,” for example, started as a love letter to her husband. “Calico Kittens” was inspired by a quilt that she found on her daughter’s bed the day she left home for college.

“I write from what I know,” Moulton says. Even her Halloween book, “The Best Secret Ever,” has sentimental value. In that book, she used her grandchildren’s names.

She recalls writing her first book, “Six Small Rabbits,” saying, “I started that way back when my husband was in Antioch and he was taking a children’s literature course. I decided to try my hand at children’s book and that was the first one I worked on.”

Whether it’s the child-like innocence of the characters, the vibrancy of the colors or the sentiments we can all relate to, Kathy Moulton’s books are as magical as they are fun.

For more information about Kathy Moulton and her works of art, please visit kavooom.com or find her on Facebook at facebook.com/KaVoooM-Productions.

Reach DCP freelance writer Lisa Bennett at LisaBennett@DaytonCityPaper.com.

 

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Reach DCP freelance writer Lisa Bennett at LisaBennett@DaytonCityPaper.com.

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