3 Art Books to Encourage Your Budding Picasso

Art Books, Book Review, Book Roundup, Middle Grade
Art Books for young artists #kidlit #artsandcrafts | batchofbooks.com

Art Books for young artists #kidlit #artsandcrafts | batchofbooks.com


An artist resides in all of us. Sadly, we tend to lose our inner artist as we grow up. Part of that happens when schools make budget cuts and reduce or eliminate their arts programs. Regardless of how much art time your child gets at school, many books and resources exist to encourage your budding Picasso. I loved art books as a child (I still do!) and now Miss K gets bombarded with my life-long obsession with art, books, and art books.


Drawing and Graphic Novelists

The Drawing Lesson: A Graphic Novel That Teaches You How to Draw by Mark Crilley

What a brilliant way to teach drawing! This isn’t like your typical art books for kids where you learn how to draw a horse, a dog, or a lion. It’s a graphic novel with a story about David, a boy that wants to learn how to draw. He meets Becky, who reluctantly gives him several drawing lessons and teaches him about proportions, shading, and negative space, among other things. After each lesson, there is a challenge for the reader to complete.

I love the approach this book takes. I love the way it doesn’t follow the same format as other art instruction books. It’s informative and well planned out. The art instruction is well written and because it’s completely illustrated, easy to understand.

While this isn’t a comprehensive book about drawing (things like perspective and concave lines aren’t addressed), it’s a fantastic starting point. Kids and adults that are jumping into the fray will find this helpful and entertaining guidance. It’s very similar to a real art lesson where the teacher instructs, corrects, and critiques your work.

Highly recommended for budding artists ages 8 and up (Miss K loves it!)

Content: Clean

Source: I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Amazon | Goodreads | Barnes & Noble | Kobo


Fiber Arts

Hook, Knit, and Spin: A Kid’s Activity Guide to Fiber Arts and Crafts by Laurie Carlson

Creative kids will love the crafts and art projects in this book. It focuses on fiber arts like knitting, crocheting, tie dying, and felting. It contains a wide variety of simple ideas and new projects.

My only criticism is the sparse number of illustrations. With craft and art books, readers need lots of visuals to guide them through the tutorials and Knit, Hook, and Spin didn’t have enough. Once I figured out how to make the projects we wanted to do, we completed them without much trouble. They’re fairly simple projects designed with kids in mind.

This is a great book if you’re interested in fostering your child’s creative side. The projects cost very little to make and leave you with that satisfied feeling you get when you complete a project.

Content: Clean

Source: I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Amazon | Goodreads | Barnes & Noble | Kobo


Something for Everyone

Michelangelo for Kids: His Life and Ideas with 21 Activities by Simonetta Carr

A fabulous book! I love Michelangelo and studied him in college. My kids didn’t love the book quite as much as I did, but that’s okay. It gave us a good start on appreciating this historic artist and his work.

The book is a history of Michelangelo’s life, with corresponding activities included throughout. Readers draw their own monsters (just like Michelangelo) after reading about his education. In the section about the David, they carve a soap sculpture. Other activities include drawing, hidden pictures, origami, and baking. It’s a great hands-on experience while learning about this amazing artist and engineer.

The history is well written and informative. Kids that enjoy history and art will appreciate the text and enjoy the activities. I would highly recommend this book to anyone looking for a good way to teach their kids about Michelangelo, the Renaissance, or art history.

Content: Nude sculptures and paintings (I didn’t think it needed mentioning, but included it just in case anyone wasn’t expecting it).

Source: I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Amazon | Goodreads | Barnes & Noble | Kobo

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  • Reply
    Adriana Garcia
    August 31, 2016 at 10:25 pm

    I wish I had Knit, Hook, and Spin as a kid! My mom’s godmother always gave me some easy craft to sew which I loved. It is true that for people who aren’t doing art as their job tend to lose their love for arts and crafts.
    I like the idea of the Michelangelo book but that’s probably because I know the artist already and crafting soap oddly seems like fun to me 😛

    • Reply
      Dena at Batch of Books
      September 1, 2016 at 1:51 pm

      I know, right? I want to carve a soap sculpture! It wouldn’t be that hard, I guess. Just get a bar of soap and a knife and away you go. 🙂

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