Tuesday, 22 December 2015

Picture books and portraits

I had a wonderful opportunity to teach a short family course for adults and children (age 5-8 years) at The Finnish Adult Education Institute. Our theme was animal stories and we explored this through art, dance, storytelling and illustration. First session was about painting portraits of animals, reading stories and getting to know each other.

Here are some of the cool animal portraits!



Our second session was about movement and dance improvisation. We also started storycrafting, a method for the children to invent their own stories. Based on these stories we would then illustrate our own picture books.

The children were in charge of the picture book process. Adults were helping them out by writing the text or illustrating the book with the child. The story was divided in three double spreads.

Here are the wonderfully inventive books the children made with their parents. I was given the permission to publish the books here. The stories were fun to read aloud at the end of the course and the children were very impressed (as were the adults, especially me!) by everybody's creations.

"The Little Cat" by Hertta (8 years)
The back cover text: "The little black cat finds a friend and and a home where she is loved. During the night the northern lights turn her fur into rainbow colours."

"Heavy Rocks" by Alvari (5 years) and his mother Virva
A story about how Hevisaurus (a very popular children's music band) got started. The humorous tale involves two boys, a pig, a rabbit and a "band mobile phone", a farm and a rock concert.

"The Lost Rabbits" by Saga (6 years) and her mother Sari
The book tells a story of three rabbits that get lost in the grass, but eventually find their way home to their mother. Happy ending involves eating delicious porridge and gingerbread biscuits.

A Christmas Story by Tuukka (5 years) and his mother Tarja
A happy story about the little boy Tuukka and his family. The illustrations had lots of details about electricity, switchboards and ita had also a Christmas Tree and Santa Claus.

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