KATHERINE writer Johanna Bell is making her debut as book author this week, when her first book Too Many Cheeky Dogs will hit streets.
The educational children’s picture book about the adventures of cheeky dogs living in remote indigenous communities has been published by Allen and Unwin, and 22-year-old Tennant Creek-based indigenous artist Dion Beasley, who has muscular dystrophy and is profoundly deaf, provided the art work for the book.
After learning basic Auslan, Ms Bell, 31, began working with Mr Beasley on the early-childhood book, which uses colours, numbers and days of the week to develop literacy and numeracy skills.
Ms Bell said she realised there was a need for a resource picture book “that resonates with remote children and their lived experience”.
She said books about living in the city did not reflect the life of many Territory indigenous and remote-based children.
Mr Beasley’s artwork has been exhibited at the Sydney’s Museum of Contemporary Art and the National Gallery of Australia, and he is well-known for his cheeky dog t-shirt designs.
Too Many Cheeky Dogs is available from Godinymayin Yijard Rivers Arts and Culture Centre, and Top News in the Katherine Shopping Centre.
> For more information on the book see: Too Many Cheeky Dogs