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Thursday, January 24, 2013

"Draw a picture for us Horace..."

A Splash of Red: The Life and Art of Horace Pippin by Jen Bryant, illustrated by Melissa Sweet is a winning tribute to a self-taught painter.
I'd never heard of Horace Pippin, but I was able to get to know him through this book.  What a fascinating life and I admire how he took the horrors of war and allowed it to open up his artistic floodgates.
The illustrations were created using watercolor, gouache, and mixed media.  They go beyond the text and help tell a deeper story about a remarkable man. I respect the details that are used within the artwork, and I like the 'diary' like feel of the whole book.
To learn more about Horace or the illustrator, Melissa Sweet, try her website. I recommend her discussion guide for even more in depth study about Horace Pippen.  
I will recommend this book to teachers in grades 1 and up.  Too many great picture books are not used enough with older grades.

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