From @averyandaugustine ―
We’re looking at the theme of creativity this month for #littlelitbookseries. Creativity is not just for artists—it’s a backbone of everyday life, and is the foundation of innovation and problem-solving, which are important processes that are necessary and fundamental for a thriving society. Creative moments arise when we ask ourselves the question, “What if…” or give ourselves free time to be curious, wonder and wander (sometimes all at the same time!).
We’re sharing some books this month that ponder what creativity is, what it means in our lives, what it looks like and how to foster it in our children. We’ll also be sharing picture books in which writers and illustrators take a highly creative approach in crafting their written or visual narrative. Follow along all month at @littlelitbookseries.
WHERE’S YOUR CREATIVITY? shows us that creativity is all around us and it’s more present in our lives than we tend to think—it’s not just found in ideas or pictures but in our dreams, the way we move, dress, the buildings in our neighborhoods. The book also offers readers ways to seek creativity right where they are—without moving from their little spot in the world. Loved this one from cover to cover, and highly recommend it. Leaving you all with a fantastic quote from it:
“Even before you woke up this morning, you were already being creative. While you were asleep your brain was busy jiggling your memories like a box full of puzzle pieces. In your dreams the pieces fit together in surprising new ways. Turn your dreams into story and write like you dream — without any rules.”
WHERE’S YOUR CREATIVITY? was written by Aaron Rosen and Riley Watts, illustrated by Marika Maijala and published by Tate | Abrams. It’s out now in the UK and publishes on April 10 in the US.
From @bonjour_mes_amies —
This month's #littlelitbookseries theme of creativity made me think of Coco Chanel. She was a trailblazer and pioneer in her own right. Coco was admired by her simple yet elegant style in the fashion world. From the time she was a little girl, the nuns at the orphanage thought she was strange and different. But that did not stop her. She embraced her individuality and was true to her own ideas and thoughts. Instead of playing, she would rather pick up a needle and thread and just create. While Coco dreamt, shapes and patterns would fill her imagination.
This simple biography inspires and shows us that there are many outlets where you can demonstrate your creativity. Whether it's sewing or crafting, singing or dancing, or even writing, your creativity and style is unique to YOU.
Little People, Big Dreams: Coco Chanel || Written by Isabel Sánchez Vegara || illustrated by Ana Albero
From @bookbloom —
Some time last summer I came up with an off-the-cuff dinner activity where we each named an animal and its accompanying rhyming accoutrement. For example: "I'm a rabbit with a habit." "I'm a fox with a box." "I'm a beaver with a cleaver." And so forth. This was an especially fun game with a three-year-old and I still laugh remembering that she said "You're a mommy with a hobby." To which I responded, "Oh, yes? What's my hobby?" "Me!" came the matter of fact reply.
This book reminds me of that game and the creative ways we play with language—twisting and turning and creating new stories along the way. Originally published in 1960, this vintage gem was reissued last year for a new generation of children. And reading it aloud is especially fun as it evokes the best sort of silliness and may even inspire your own creative book related game.
If Apples Had Teeth by Milton and Shirley Glaser. Published by Enchanted Lion.
From @carterhiggins ―
This month, the #littlelitbookseries has creativity on the brain, and this one is a showstopper. This debut by Corinna Luyken is more than a book—it’s an experience. It hushes a crowd until they erupt into simultaneous squeals when they see what is happening. I can vouch for the storytime magic that happens here, I promise. For the curious and persistent little souls.
From @littlebooksbigworld —
“It looked like any rocky hill - nothing but sand and rocks, some old wooden boxes, cactus and greasewood and thorny ocotillo - but it was a special place.”
A special place where pebbles became money, boxes were turned into tables, streets were lined with rocks and desert glass, and all you needed for a horse was a stick. A place where children played freely and explored the lessons of life. A place where creativity and nature collided and birthed the imaginary (but very real) town of Roxaboxen.
The creative spirit of a child cannot be underestimated. And is such a wonderful thing to contemplate! Some free time and space, sticks and rocks, an old sheet, a cardboard box and a handful of crayons... oh the possibilities for a child!
From @live_read_write ―
This month the @littlelitbookseries shines a light on creativity. This picture book biography, as you can probably glean from the vibrant cover, is alive with color and life. It paints a picture of Mary Blair, the artist behind a popular Walt Disney attraction, and her passion for COLOR.
“Other children collected marbles or dolls, but Mary collected colors of every shade and every hue.” POCKET FULL OF COLORS: THE MAGICAL WORLD OF MARY BLAIR, DISNEY ARTIST EXTRAORDINAIRE follows the life of a girl who loved color — tangerine and taupe, emerald and aquamarine. She worked on and off for Walt Disney Studios, and contributed to Cinderella, Alice in Wonderland, and Peter Pan. She traveled the world, soaking up color. However, many found her use of colors and lines too abstract.
“And when she picked up her brush, the colors Mary had so carefully collected all her life took her on a trip around the globe.” After she left the company, Disney commissioned her for a special project. “I need your wild and beautiful colors!” Blair brought her inspiration from abroad as well as her playful and whimsical style to help create the It’s a Small World feature for the 1964 New York World’s Fair. The attraction moved to California and replications now appear at Disney properties around the world.
The book also features an author’s note framed by a scripted list of myriad colors. It’s a wonderful story about pursuing one’s passion, developing confidence in uniqueness, and finding one’s place in the world. Author and illustrator trio of Amy Guglielmo, Jacqueline Tourville, and Brigette Barrager do a great job of sharing an amazing artist.
From @livingbythepagewithnatalie —
Between the several inches of snow we received last weekend and more calls for snow in the forecast, we're deep into winter crafts over in these parts before our color scheme morphs into the reds/pinks of Valentine's Day! We have been loving 'If Picasso Painted a Snowman' written by Amy Newbold and illustrated by Greg Newbold. It's a fun way to teach kids about a variety of famous painters (the book depicts 17 different ones) and artistic styles based on how each of them would paint a snowman. We read the book and then I had the kids try their hand at painting their favorite style. My older two loved Piet Mondrian, my youngest Vincent Van Gogh. It's a fabulous one to spark kids wintry imaginations and teach them about art in the process! I have a feeling we will revisit this one each winter! Published by Tilbury House Publishers in 2017.
From @ourbookbag ―
This book is a well-loved favourite at our house and it is long-overdue for me to share it here. The theme for this months #littlelitbookseries is #creativity and this book certainly encompasses that.
Beautiful Oops by Barney Saltzberg is an invitation to make mistakes and see what can become of them. Starting a creative project can be overwhelming and children (and adults) often want to get it just right. This interactive book encourages play and exploration, acknowledging that each mistake can be an opportunity to create something new. “A smudge and a smear can make magic appear.” If you haven’t read this book yet, check it out and see where it takes you!
Published by Workman Publishing.
From @picturethisbook —
The theme for this month’s #littlelitbookseries is creativity, and this quirky Caldecott Medal winner shows how, with a little imagination, something old can be upcycled into something useful rather then simply being discarded. Based on an old Yiddish folk song, Simms Taback’s ingenious die-cuts and colourful illustrations truly embody Joseph’s creative spirit and I love the inspiring overall “waste not, want not” message that we could all do well to heed.
From @sunlitpages ―
Creativity sparks creativity. When Andrew takes up his pencil, he begins with just a single line, then he adds another and another. He curves it around and goes this way and that, and voila! It's a flying dog! He didn't begin with a flying dog in mind. He just put down the first mark and paid attention to where his pencil was taking him.
It's the same with any creative process, right? It might seem like there's nothing there, but take the first, scary step, and the rest will follow.
From @teeandpenguin ―
This month’s #littlelitbookseries theme of creativity made us think about the creative process and how mistakes and even failure are inherent in that process, and in life. We love that Corrina Luyken celebrates mistakes and shows young readers how an errant line or accidental ink splotch can be turned into something fabulous and full of imaginative details. And we completely agree that if you view your mistakes as opportunities they can often lead to results that are better than what was initially planned.
From @welovebookworms —
Peter H. Reynolds writes, "I wrote and illustrated THE DOT and ISH as a way to help children and 'grown-up children' be brave enough to 'leave their mark.' While the books are about art, they really are about process - about ideas, creative thinking, bravery, expression, original ideas, and sharing.
THE DOT is about getting started - getting 'un-stuck.' It’s about the creative process - exploring an idea in many ways then sharing our ideas with others. Once you get rolling, there is a potential of getting 'squashed' which is what ISH is about. ISH aims to help give young and old alike some vocabulary to defend their ideas. After all, you can't become better at something that you don't do. “So, make your mark and see where it takes you. Let it flow and see where it grows.” These are my #creativitycontributions to this month’s #littlelitbookseries theme.
From @writesinla ―
For our #littlelitbookseries CREATIVITY theme, I give you WONDER BEAR by Tao Nyeu. A wordless book from 2008, it’s teeming with imagination. Two kids plant seeds and one of them sprouts a magical plant and magical bear. From there, all kinds of wonderful things happen, each more marvelous than the last. It’s a bit like what creativity feels like—the freedom to dream and explore and invent. And I think kid readers would happily provide their own creative narration to accompany the illustrations.