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Bryan Collier became interested in art at an early age. “At home and at school, I was encouraged to read. I remember the first books with pictures that I read by myself were ‘The Snowy Day’ by Ezra Jack Keats and ‘Harold and the Purple Crayon’ by Crockett Johnson. I liked the stories, but I really liked the pictures.” As a teenager Collier began to paint the world around him - the bay, ducks, water and marshland of Maryland’s Eastern Shore. Collier tried for seven years before he got his break with the publication of his book “Uptown.” His new book is “I, Too, Am America” (Simon & Schuster).