Working from a studio surrounded by trees in the Montecito foothills, artist and designer Gabriele de Ginant has spent 20 years creating original books, furniture, paintings and clothing. In recent years, she has turned her attention to writing and illustrating a new fairytale, which centers on the magical character Rosabella.

Like the author, Rosabella is a sensitive, creative soul, a dancer and a spiritual seeker who feels deeply connected to nature. Many of the book’s illustrations show Rosabella exploring the natural world in different seasons. An original ballet based on the fairytale of Rosabella is currently in post-production. To learn more or to support this project, visit

Here are excerpts from the book.

Rosabella rises slowly from the ground. She looks around in awe and wonder while turning to all sides. It is them that she knows she has to be a dancer:she has to dance and sing in praise of all the beauty and splendor that surrounds her. She does not hesitate she begins to dance; slowly at first, carefully, trying out her newborn feet. She has no shoes, and she needs none. At the same moment, she raises her crystal voice in song to help her slender feet to dance.

Now it is blossom time in the meadow, the place where Rosabella danced for the very first time. There she spots some little blue Forget-Me-Nots and asks them, “Tell me, dear blue blossoms, can you help me find my dream? I must have a dream, you know!” But the little blue Forget-Me-nots only reply,

“We forgot – we forgot we forgot:” and their pretty light blue faces look at one another as if to excuse their forgetfulness.”

Rosabella thanks them anyway, wishes them a happy life and dances on.

Then, unlike gentle Earth and Graceful Water, the third element, Fire, arrives on the scene. He jumps and turns and waves his pointed hands like lightning, shooting flames and sparks from all his fingers. He is engulfed in fiery veils of yellow, red, and gold, causing his sisters Earth and water to retreat a bit. He too is eager to contribute to the little flower’s growth. He waves his flaming hands over her, but gently, mindful of his awesome power:

Rosabella waits for the moon to rise. She thinks the Moon will surely know of dreams, since she watches nightly from above. So Rosabella site down on an old tree stump and enjoys the company of her many furry white forest friends.


Montecito’s Tecolote Bookstore (1470 E. Valley Rd.) will celebrate its grand re-opening with a signing for writer/illustrator Gabriele Rose de Ginant’s latest book, Rosabella on Friday, August 22 at 5pm. Proceeds from the book’s sales will benefit the Profant Foundation For The Arts, which grants scholarships to Santa Barbara artists of all ages. Call Tecolote at 969-4977 for more information.


Please note this login is to submit events or press releases. Use this page here to login for your Independent subscription

Not a member? Sign up here.