Fact or fiction? : photography merging genres in children's picturebooks

McKelvey, Bridgette (2008) Fact or fiction? : photography merging genres in children's picturebooks. Masters by Research thesis, Queensland University of Technology.

PDF (23MB)


This paper explores photography in children’s picturebooks and its ability to extend image-making and reading by creating a hybrid genre that merges real and non-real worlds. In analysing the use of photography in such a hybrid genre, the work of Lauren Child (2006, 2001a, 2001b, 2000), Polly Borland (2006), Shaun Tan (2007, 2000, 1998) and Dave McKean (2004a, 2004b, 1995) is deconstructed. These artists utilise photography in contemporary picturebooks that are fictional. In addition, David Doubilet’s images (1990, 1989, 1984, 1980) are discussed, which fuse underwater photojournalism with art, for factual outputs.

This research uncovers a gap in picturebook literature and creates a new hybrid by merging genres to produce a work that is both factual and fictional. The research methodology in this study includes a brief overview of photography and notions of truth, contemporary picturebook trend theory, use of a student focus group, industry collaborations and workshops, and environmental education pedagogy. This thesis outlines summaries of research outcomes, not the least of which is the capacity for photography to enrich narrative accounts by providing multilayered information, character perspectives and/ or a metafictive experience. These research outcomes are then applied to the process of creating such a hybrid children’s picturebook.

Impact and interest:

Search Google Scholar™

Citation counts are sourced monthly from Scopus and Web of Science® citation databases.

These databases contain citations from different subsets of available publications and different time periods and thus the citation count from each is usually different. Some works are not in either database and no count is displayed. Scopus includes citations from articles published in 1996 onwards, and Web of Science® generally from 1980 onwards.

Citations counts from the Google Scholar™ indexing service can be viewed at the linked Google Scholar™ search.

Full-text downloads:

2,298 since deposited on 27 Mar 2009
135 in the past twelve months

Full-text downloads displays the total number of times this work’s files (e.g., a PDF) have been downloaded from QUT ePrints as well as the number of downloads in the previous 365 days. The count includes downloads for all files if a work has more than one.

ID Code: 19232
Item Type: QUT Thesis (Masters by Research)
Supervisor: Klaebe, Helen & Henderson, Deborah
Keywords: picturebooks, photorealism, mixed media, photography, metafiction, pedagogy
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Creative Industries Faculty
Institution: Queensland University of Technology
Deposited On: 27 Mar 2009 03:15
Last Modified: 28 Oct 2011 19:52

Export: EndNote | Dublin Core | BibTeX

Repository Staff Only: item control page