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Ish (Creatrilogy) Hardcover – August 19, 2004
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From School Library Journal
Starred Review. Kindergarten-Grade 3 - Reynolds follows The Dot (Candlewick, 2003) with this companion story about creativity and the artistic process. Ramon loves to draw: "Anytime. Anything. Anywhere." When his older brother laughs at one of his pictures and points out that it does not look like a real vase of flowers, a dejected Ramon crumples up all of his efforts. However, he soon learns that his younger sister has hung the discarded papers on her bedroom walls. When he declares that the picture of the vase doesn't look like the real thing, she says that it looks "vase-ISH." The child then begins to produce paintings that look "tree-ish," "afternoon-ish," and "silly-ish." His "ish art" inspires him to look at all creative endeavors differently. The watercolor, ink, and tea illustrations have a childlike charm. Set against white backgrounds, the quirky line drawings and restrained use of color combine to create an attractive, unique picture book. The small size lends itself to one-on-one sharing and thoughtful examination. Ish, like Leo Lionni's Frederick (Knopf, 1967), encourages readers to see the world anew. - Shawn Brommer, South Central Library System, Madison, WI
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
PreS-Gr. 2. Reynolds' previous book, The Dot (see Top 10 Arts Books for Youth on p.497), imparted an important message to kids about the various ways in which art can be defined. This has a similar message, but unlike the character in The Dot, who doesn't believe she can draw, Ramon loves to draw. In fact, he draws wherever he can, even on the toilet. But after his older brother laughs at his work, Ramon loses confidence; none of his drawings look right to him anymore. He's about to quit drawing when his sister shows him that she has kept all his crumpled efforts. Now he understands that though he doesn't draw exact replicas (his trees are only "tree-ish"), the response his art engenders is what matters. It's likely that fewer children will identify with Ramon than with the girl in the previous book, but this certainly has a strong message, and the overriding theme about creativity versus exactitude will resonate with many. The line-and-color artwork is simple, but it has great emotion and warmth. Kids will respond to that, too. Ilene Cooper
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
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