Creativity Takes Courage


Creativity Takes Courage

The winds are picking up outside, the trees are swaying. I think my power is going to go out at any minute. I should be packing, we have a noon town-wide curfew. We are going to a friend’s house, to her basement. It’s Frankenstorm 2012. But here I am at my computer, creating one last post. Some words to think about this week while we have no power (they are predicting a 10 day outage).

I love this quote from one of my favorite painters, Henri Matisse. For me, creativity means stepping outside of the box and putting yourself out there.

Stay safe, my friends! (During the storm, I mean…not in your creative life!)

 

Candy Wrapper Halloween Garland


Candy Wrapper Halloween Garland

It’s now 5 days until Halloween, and my kids are at their breaking point with me. I brought the Halloween boxes up two weeks ago but they are still sitting in the living room untouched. Until today that is! I found a ziploc bag full of candy wrappers and remembered that I had meant to make a candy wrapper garland last year. So, despite thoughts of cavities/promoting junk food running through my head, I made the banner. And whadyaknow? It’s pretty sweet.

It’s a multi-step process, but not hard. It took me about two hours from start to finish.

Materials:

Baker’s twine

Large sewing needle

Colored paper

Scissors, pencil, double-sided tape

Candy wrappers (I also threw in a few muffin papers for extra green)

To make the letters, I folded the paper lengthwise into three sections. This way, I knew the letters would be the same height. I drew the letters freehand and cut them out. I used double-sticky tape to attach the letters to the black paper. Next, I laid out the letters and the wrappers. Then I started from the end, and wove my needle in and out of each piece. I made sure to pull the first wrapper (which will actually be the wrapper at the end, to the furthest right) far, far down the thread so I had enough room to add everything.

That’s it! I attached it to my fireplace mantle on the little hooks that I use to hang stockings.

I’m not much of a black + orange girl, so this colorful banner makes me happy. My kids will be so proud!

This garland would also look really cute (ok, cuter actually) if it said “trick-or-treat”.

Happy Candy Day!

xo, Bar

 

Drawing Books for Kids


Drawing Books for Kids

I came across this Fingerprint book by Marion Deuchars and it sparked something in me. I loved making fingerprint animals when I was a growing up! I can’t believe I haven’t tried this with my kids. I am definitely adding this book to my Amazon cart for Christmas, I’m so excited.

I decided to do a little research to find the best drawing books that ignite creativity in the little ones. As you can imagine, there are many books on drawing out there. I wanted to keep the list short and pick just the ones that I thought would instantly excite the kids, with very few directions and good graphics.

I could not make a list of drawing books without including award winner Ed Emberly. I would spend hours as a kid learning how to draw from his books. I still have one of them on my shelf! Granted, it’s not the open-ended art experience that I promote in our house. But the kids do LOVE it, and it keeps them busy. Also, there comes a time in their young lives when they realize that they can’t draw something perfectly. This usually happens around the age of 7 or 8. I found that my girls would start to draw lots of hearts, peace signs and rainbows. I can’t tell you how much this drives me crazy. So taking out Ed Emberly can actually free them up and remind them that drawing is fun and that they should try new things. This book is also great for the reluctant artist. (Ages 4 and up.)

Fotoplay by Mj Bronstein is an art activity book that blends realism and fantasy. It’s rare to find a book like this that uses photos as prompts to spark the imagination. It’s smart and funny and gets kids to think outside of the lines. Great for road trips or vacation days. (Ages 5 and up.)

642 Things To Draw is the perfect inspirational sketchbook. With its collection of offbeat and clever drawing prompts, this book is perfect for that child or teen who loves to draw. Inside this simple book are blank pages with just a prompt at the top: A rolling pin, a robot, a pickle, a water tower, a hammock, a wasp, a safety pin, a kiss. I am getting this for all three of my kids (and will secretly fill some pages myself!). (Ages 4 and up)

I will keep searching for more great art books and share them with you again!

Ed Emberly Photos via Trula Kids.