Thursday, September 6, 2012

Great Picture Books for Inkblots and Other Art

Art is a subject quite close to my heart and that is evident in my very long list of recommendations.  I spent my college years frequenting many a museum as an art major.  I adore art and creativity and want to open my childrens' eyes to all of the possibilities at a young age.  We love to do craft/art projects and I even did an  A to Z Animals project with Greysen and his friend last year - soon to start with Camden as she is just learning her ABC's.  You can find those here:

We've recently discovered some wonderful art books that have had us making some very creative projects. We made our own "inkblots" with acrylic paint and fingerprint drawings (although my youngest was against getting her fingers dirty for this!).  Outside of my own pins on Pinterest, this is my favorite resource for art projects related to childrens' books:

Art by Patrick McDonnell 
A simple, but beautiful, ode to art.

Bridget's Beret by Tom Lichtenfeld
Bridget's beret is her artistic expression - can she still make art without it?  

Not a Box - and -
Not a Stick by Antoinette Portis 
These two books are an excellent way to get kids thinking creatively.  It's not just a box/stick - they magically become so much more with a little imagination.

the dot  - and - 
ish by Peter H. Reynolds
Are both wonderful books about creativity and not being afraid to try something.

Beautiful Oops by Barney Saltzberg 
This is a brilliant book.  About making art out of mistakes.  

Willy's Pictures by Anthony Browne
Seen Art? by Jon Scieszka, illustrated by Lane Smith. I love art museums and love great, historical works of art. It is exciting for me to share these things with my children. Both of these books are incredibly entertaining ways to introduce this to your children.

Inkblot: Drip, Splat and Squish Your Way to Creativity by Margaret Peot
 Ed Emberley's Complete Funprint Drawing Book by Ed Emberley - who has written loads of books, the most popular of which is Go Away, Big Green Monster! Emberley has a number of other art and drawing books, but this is a favorite at our house.

I Ain't Gonna Paint No More! by Karen Beaumont, illustrated by David Catrow. If you've ever painted with a pre-schooler, then you will enjoy this book.  You must be prepared for a mess and a mess this child makes - the kids find it hilarious!

Art & Max by David Wiesner
A wonderfully imaginative book!  Art is the artist and he doesn't think that Max can paint, but what Max creates is fantastic.

A Day With No Crayons by Elizabeth Rusch, illustrated by Chad Cameron. This book opened up a great discussion on using other mediums.  Most children are only familiar with crayons, markers, acrylics, but art can be so much more.

Swirl by Swirl: Spirals in Nature by Joyce Sidman
Perfect Square by Michael Hall
Two very clever books that look at shapes in a new way.

The following three are excellent educational color books - primary and secondary colors, and color mixing.  These have taught my kids so much.

Warthog's Paint: A Messy Color Book by Pamela Duncan Edwards

Mouse Paint by Ellen Stoll Walsh

White Rabbit's Color Book by Alan Baker

We also adore the Sesame Street video/song Three Primary Colors that is excellent for teaching children about colors and color-mixing:

Chalk by Bill Thompson
And a late addition - I forgot about this book until I saw it at the library this week.  This book is excellent for art or storytelling.  An extra fun activity - make the book come alive: Chalk Activity 

The iPad also has a great app called Art Circles.  There are multiple circles organized by color or curator or other topics.  Some pieces of art even have a mega-zoom feature.  The kids and I have had great fun exploring art this way.

We love new books at our house - if you love any literature on this topic that didn't make my list, please do share!

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