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Unlock your inner artist with the books in our Art section. Great, practical books to help kids to get creative...books to help parents introduce children to the world of art and artists. There's something for all kids from 3+.
Frida Kahlo, written by Isabel Thomas and illustrated by Dàlia Adillon is a charmingly illustrated biography of a brilliant artist. Frida Kahlo was a Mexican artist who endured great pain and hardship, but used her bright, vivid brushstrokes to express her emotions and reveal her true personality. She created over 50 self-portraits and is considered to be one of the most influential and inspirational artists of the twentieth century.
November 2019 Book of the Month | Prepare to explore ten of the most haunted places on Earth in this striking book, and then to learn their secrets ingeniously with the help of coloured lenses. With the naked eye, the huge colour illustrations are just a jumble of lines; enticing, but baffling. View the same pages through one of three different coloured lenses, and suddenly a whole new vista springs into life. The red lens shows the people who inhabited these special places (ranging from Bran Castle, Romania to San Juan Chamula Cemetery, Mexico), the green lens shows us the place and its surroundings in detail, while best of all the blue lens magics up the ghostly and supernatural beings that haunt it. Short, sharp snippets of information accompanying vignettes on the following page tell us more about our discoveries. It’s a treat to explore, deliciously spooky and the illustrations are super stylish.
The third book from highly talented newcomer Fifi Kuo, this is an irresistible tribute to the joy of drawing. On each page a group of lively little boys and girls have fun with different types of illustration – finger painting, using felt tips and paints, making collages, even sewing. The message is clear – everyone can draw, creativity and self-expression are for us all, and it’s fun. The compositions are different on every page and there are separate little stories to follow throughout. A joyful read certain to inspire creativity.
From cave paintings to modern masterpieces, discover the history of art in this beautiful sticker book. Each page is filled with fascinating facts about the pictures and artists, and there's a timeline showing the history of art, plus links to websites where you can tour art galleries. Published in association with The National Gallery, London.
A Julia Eccleshare Pick for November 2018 | December 2018 Book of the Month | An outstanding book for everyone who has enjoyed We’re Going on a Bear Hunt or any of Helen Oxenbury’s other wonderful books from her board books capturing the smallest details of toddler life to her witty and sophisticated illustrations to Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. Distinguished children’s book critic Leonard S. Marcus takes reader’s behind the scenes of Oxenbury’s life as he recounts the major moments which mark out her career of such exceptional originality and sets it firmly within the publishing context of the period. The wealth of Oxenbury’s exquisite illustrations that have been reproduced in the highest possible quality make it a book that gives hours of enjoyment and inspiration.
Charles Darwin, written by Isabel Thomas and illustrated by Dàlia Adillon is a beautifully illustrated biography of a biologist who changed the world. Charles Darwin’s ideas about evolution caused both outrage and wonder, and quickly made him one of the most famous men in history. From his five-year voyage across the high seas to 20 years of research, readers can follow Darwin on his adventure to prove a theory that would change the world.
Leonardo Da Vinci, written by Isabel Thomas and illustrated by Katja Spitzer is a charmingly illustrated biography of the Italian Renaissance genius. Most famous as the painter who created the Mona Lisa, Leonardo da Vinci is also one of history’s greatest geniuses – he was a mathematician, architect, astronomer, scientist and musician… and he even invented the helicopter!
Winner of the Blue Peter Book Awards 2019, Best Book with Facts | | A fascinating information book, The Colours of History takes readers to different places at different times to show how humans have used colour in art, politics and trade. They’ll learn how indigo, made from plants that grow in Asia, began to be traded round the world in the 15th century, how hundreds of years later it was used to colour a type of cloth in Nîmes, which eventually became known as ‘denim’. It explains how pink has been regarded as a ‘boy colour’ and a ‘girl colour’, and why, in the US in the early 20th century, margarine was pink. And it describes how the discovery of a new mineral in a Russian gold mine transformed Van Gogh’s paintings. It’s an unusual and vivid way to demonstrate how interconnected the world has always been, and mankind’s endless ingenuity too.
The Story of Art Picture Book is a great way to foster children’s interest in art. With masses of colour reproductions of paintings and artworks, it’s full of information on the way painting has developed over the centuries, from the cave paintings of Lascaux to the modern art of Louise Bourgeois and Anish Kapoor. The text is short and easy to read, and highlights details in the various artworks that will have particular appeal to children, occasional cartoon illustrations adding extra snippets of information – Rembrandt pulling faces at himself in a mirror for example, to help him draw different facial expressions. You can take special virtual tours of art galleries too via links on the Usborne website. ~ Andrea Reece
This clever, stylish picture book is an excellent and very accessible introduction to different art styles, from the earliest cave paintings through to Cubism and contemporary art. It is also a neat celebration of human diversity, acknowledging that we are all unique, and all works of art. In appealing lines of rhyming text, Mark Sperring presents a series of statements guaranteed to make readers examine the artworks represented in Rose Blake’s illustrations: “We might look rather classic” for example, under a painting of an Ancient Greek sculpture. It’s ingenious, fun to read and revisit, and just the sort of book to prompt a family trip to the local art gallery too. ~ Andrea Reece
Two children, Emmy and Jeff, escort readers into a world of colours in Ross Collins’ new picture book. Each spread is given over to one colour, from yellow, which brightens the day, through blue, which cools things down, to green which grows and grows, until they are all there and it’s just ‘Too much!’ say Jeff and Emmy. The text is admirably short but the pictures are full of life and action, thanks to the interaction between the children and the colours, which all have their own personality. Specially designed for readers – child or adult – with dyslexia, this is easy to read but bursting with ideas.~ Andrea Reece
With the holidays looming on the horizon, why not plan some time for some art and some artists and perhaps include a trip to a local art gallery? It’s a great way to fire their imagination for painting and drawing. To help them get the most out of it we have range of practical books suitable for a variety of ages, and other lovely books that will ‘help the whole family get into art’ …