Little ballerinas is Tanja Pečenko’s collection of witty statements/wise thoughts by young ballerinas, as well as conversations with them. Tanja is a young ballet teacher and she has been collecting these statements for many years.

This beautifully illustrated book, enriched by Zorana Živić’s poetic creativity, can be read for enjoyment, either page by page or you can open it randomly when you’re having a really bad day and simply want to lighten up.

In a very humorous way, this book dispels the stereotypical image of a serious, reserved and uptight ballerinas, who are replaced by an image that is completely new, fresh and playful.

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The illustrations for the book titled ‘Male baletke in njihove cvetke’ is one more project bringing together the greatest joys of life – children, music, dance and flowers in the most good-humoured fashion. The book really speaks to me and I’m beyond happy to have been invited to be a part of it.

The story I wanted to tell with the illustrations was this stereotypical image of fragile, dreamy ballerinas that fades away with the story. The children are always the ones telling the truth, they are a reflection of us and they bring us back to reality through dreams.

The characters were given a lot of white space, allowing them to move and spread across the surface naturally and unobtrusively. They are addressed by a flower only here and there. I was also unable to avoid including all the details pertaining to children’s joyousness, playfulness and inventiveness. The shades of the colours are mostly plain and soft.