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What do Children’s Books and Drawing on Walls Have in Common

Apr 1, 2017 | Art Behind the Scenes

If any of you ever wondered how someone starts having a taste for art and drawing, here’s a story for you:

I have some vague memories of me splurging into a big box of colored pencils, and then a not-so-happy mother trying to clean up a wall that I had been meticulously “decorating” with my 3-year-old imagination. But, truth be told, it wasn’t my fault that someone gave me so many colored pencils and encouraged me to use them. Thank God they were not markers! (of course, there was some paper also around me, but why use that, when I had a big wall next to me?)

Later on, as I grew up a little bit more, I got inspired by the books I was reading and by watching my favorite fairy tales and cartoons, either on TV or on a slide film projector (oh, those old communist projectors… I had a big box of films, it was always hard to choose which one to watch, because they were all good stuff). When I started drawing my own imaginary characters, I remember I tried to draw a beautiful girl inspired by Snow White. I loved her dress! I was also fascinated by the seven dwarfs and their funny shoes. So I was drawing gnomes and dwarfs and children everywhere: on pieces of paper, on my parent’s notebooks, on blank pages of books… I kept drawing and coloring and experimenting with my pencils… I also loved to study the human body moves, like running, dancing. I tried to look at body shapes and imitate what I saw. Of course, my anatomy was off, but I was persistent. My dancing girls were everywhere!

Then came the more advanced stuff. I think I was 6 or 7 years old, playing outside with my friends, and, of course, using chalk to draw on the asphalt. I was seriously engaged in drawing a cartoon character. I was in my own world. But someone interrupted me. He was a much older kid, I think he was around 15 or 16. He came next to me and started looking at my drawings. After a while, he pointed out some things that I could improve: and so I learned about semi profile… And then I was drawing only semi profiles for a while… I loved the roundness of the cheeks and the oval shape of the face. That kid tragically passed away in car accident, when he was 18, but his memory will always remain in my mind: he was one of my first art “teachers”, if I could say so.

I guess my point is that whatever I was doing with most passion as a child, comes back now. I keep that spirit of joyfulness and curiosity in me, when I draw my book characters. That child exists in all of us. I truly believe that whatever inspired us most, as children, will also be our driving engine, later in life.

So, I’m passing on that inspiration to the next generation of children: artistic kids, that want to use their own creativity to satisfy their colorful soul. An why not, to the artistic kids in the more grown-up people, that want to channel their creativity into a good direction.

I started making some alphabet coloring books for kids (and for the children in ourselves, too). I started putting them up for free download (check the armadillo sign on the left of the website page). As soon as I make more letters, I will add them to the folder. I thought that this is a good start for a child that wants to learn both reading the letters, writing them… and coloring them. Learning and playing in the same time. As an adult, the idea is that whoever wants to experiment with their craftsy side, can later cut out the letters and use them in all sorts of crafts projects, collage, greeting cards… You name it.

I have several projects going on right now, a few books in the make, waiting for me to illustrate, and soon I will get started on writing on this blog lots of tips on art, color combinations, visual tricks on colors, painting, and much more. So if any of you is interested in getting artsy, follow my Facebook and Instagram pages, subscribe to my newsletter on this blog and get ready to unleash your creativity!

Curious about some of the books I illustrated? Here are a few links… For a limited amount of time, the author, Alexandra Vasiliu, has them at a reduced price.

Smile with my animal friends

The King of Time. An illustrated Fairy Tale

Through the heart’s eyes. illustrated love poems

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