Artist and author Chris Van Allsburg is interviewed by NASA about Zathura, his children’s space adventure book, and keeping his own sense of wonder:

Sometimes when your children are very young, you can see the world through their eyes and have that child-like sense of wonder…I think a little bit of the sense of wonder is a desire to escape the present, or the real world. That fantasy is actually a way to see the world how you’d like it to be, rather than seeing the way it is, and that’s a bit of an inspiration. It’s also the whole idea of believing in things that are not quite possible.

I like that kids are less inclined to discount things because they can’t be done. They have an imagination that thinks that maybe things can be done. So certainly it is useful as an adult, possibly as an adult scientist as well as an artist, to think about things that might not happen and then wonder how they might.


Full interview here

Added note:

The Writer’s Almanac (June 18, 2016) reveals Van Allsburg’s interview for admission into a school for art & design:

He wanted to study art in college, but he hadn’t taken any art classes in high school, so he lied and told the admissions officer he was so advanced that he was given private lessons on the weekends. The officer was impressed, but not convinced, and he asked Van Allsburg what he thought of Norman Rockwell. Van Allsburg didn’t really have an opinion, but he guessed that the admissions officer probably liked Rockwell, so he said: “I believe Norman Rockwell is unfairly criticized for being sentimental. I think he is a wonderful painter who captures America’s longings, America’s dreams, and presents American life with the drama and sensitivity of a great playwright.” The admissions officer approved him then and there, and he became an official art student at the University of Michigan.

Sometimes fantasy is a good thing…sometimes often…