Big Brother Mouse, with a pencil

Chittakone Vilayphong

Artist, writer, and musician

Chittakone on Phousi, overlooking the Nam Kham river of Luang Prabang Chittakone Vilayphong is currently the youngest staff member at Big Brother Mouse, where he fits his drawing time around his high school studies. Born in 1991, Chittakone has always loved to draw. When he was 14, he won first prize in the "Age 14-18" group at the second Big Brother Mouse art contest.

The first book he illustrated was Dinosaurs! For his next assignment, we had him draw all the pictures from Dr. Seuss's classic, The Cat in the Hat, onto large sheets of paper. Then we gave him a new book, New, Improved Buffalo, which had been inspired by Dr. Seuss's works. If you have a chance to look at both books you'll clearly see how his versatile 14-year-old mind incorporated some new ideas from the Dr. Seuss book, and adapted them to Laos. Since then, he has illustrated The Story of Dr. Dolittle and The Jungle Boy. He both wrote and illustrated Jong Jong Jong! which helps Lao children learn the tone marks used in written Lao.

Chittakone on Phousi, overlooking the Nam Kham river of Luang Prabang Chittakone has developed several styles, including colorful cartoons and detailed pen-and-ink drawings. He says "drawing must have an idea, a thought. I like to compare real pictures and cartoon pictures. Color is important because if you do not paint the right color, your picture is not beautiful. Anyone who wants to do a good job with drawing must have talent, patience, and must really love and be excited with this work."

Chittakone's creative talents extend beyond drawing. He learned to play the acoustic guitar from his brother; his friends admire his ability to listen to a CD, then play and sing the songs by ear. He has written some of his own songs, and can perform in Lao, Thai, English, and French.

Chittakone lives in Luang Prabang with his parents, brother, and sister. After high school, he plans to continue his education and hopes to study computer animation at university.