Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Kid Artists: True Tales of Childhood From Creative Legends

Kid Artists: True Tales of Childhood from Creative Legends by David Stabler

Review by Lauren

source: copy from BEA '16; all opinions are my own

Official SummaryThe series that began with Kid Presidents and Kid Athletes has a new volume that chronicles the childhoods of 16 celebrated artists—everyone from Claude Monet and Vincent van Gogh to Mary Cassat, Frida Kahlo, Jean-Michel Basquiat, and even Dr. Seuss! Readers will learn: 

· Georgia O’Keeffe was so enthralled by nature that she once ate dirt just to see what it tasted like. 
· Jackson Pollock lost the top of his right index finger in a childhood accident (and the severed tip was eaten by a rooster!). 
· Andy Warhol’s favorite childhood lunch was—what else?—a bowl of Campbell’s tomato soup.


This was a fun nonfiction book! It's perfect for middle school age, but older readers can enjoy it too. I'm 26 years old and I thought it was a lot of fun and really interesting. The idea behind this book is to share the childhood stories of famous artists. You often hear about their adulthood, when they really started to get famous, but it's interesting to learn where these people came from! I know I'm curious about "origin stories" when I really admire someone.

The book is broken up into three sections, with different artists. The artists in each section have one thing in common. For example, one section is about artists who loved and were inspired by nature. I thought this was a clever way of breaking things up! I also really loved the illustrations by Doogie Horner. I got my book at BEA so I there were a few missing illustrations, but for the most part, they were all included in the ARC. I assume they will keep them in black and white, but it would be cool if they had color. However, eight of the artists are included in color on the cover, which is nice, because it shows nationality and race, such as Frida Kahlo who was Mexican and Jean-Michel Basquiat, who was African-American.

While I knew most of the artists featured, I wasn't aware of all of them. Plus, the ones I did know, I didn't necessarily know a lot about their childhood. For example, did you know that Andy Warhol's mom lived with him as an adult and looked after him while making her own artwork? Or, did you know that Charles Schulz first drew comics about his own dog, which ultimately led to Snoopy? All very intriguing facts! This is a great book to learn about these amazing artists, but it's also something that I think all burgeoning young artists should have on hand. It shows how other people went about learning to paint, draw, sculpt, and more and it could really inspire kids to try their hand at what they are interested in! Be creative!


Christy LoveOfBooks said...

I love learning about stuff like this. Forget young readers, *I* want this book! :D

Melliane said...

It looks like a really interesting idea

Erika Sorocco said...

I love that Charles Schulz was included!


Melissa (Books and Things) said...

Oh yea... this one would totally work for me and to give as a pressie. So checking this one out. I'm also glad they did artists of other nationalities and cultures.

Heidi@Rainy Day Ramblings said...

What a fun idea, and I liked the facts you included. This would be a good one for younger readers.

Grace @ RebelMommyBookBlog said...

This sounds like a fun and interesting book. I totally think it sounds like an all ages book even if geared towards younger readers!

Midnight Cowgirl said...

Sounds like an interesting book, and I love the Georgia O’Keeffe fact :)

Jennifer Humphries said...

How cool is this! What an interesting perspective and take on sharing the histories of these famous artists.

Joyous Reads said...

Oh, how fun! I would have to find a copy for my boy. :)