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Welcome Author-Illustrator Amy Nielander!

Last summer I had the opportunity to go to Highlights Bootcamp for picturebook makers. It was a four day retreat in the Pennsylvania countryside for authors and illustrators to ‘workshop’ their dummies and manuscripts.  Among the many amazing people I … Read More

Digital Art Marries Traditional Media

Learn how to integrate graphite drawing, watercolor painting and use of Photoshop to create a cohesive, textural painting.

Often what we appreciate in an illustration, and what draws us to it, is how it makes us feel. We have … Read More

Writing and Illustrating Twisted Fairy Tales

What if the Big Bad Wolf was framed?

Twisted or “fractured” fairy tales are old, familiar fairy tales told with a twist.  They challenge us to ask “what if”, through words and images.  Writing and illustrating fractured fairy tales gives … Read More

“Beekle” meets Robert Sabuda’s Pop Ups!

Make fantastic pop-up books with your students using Dan Santat’s Beekle for inspiration.

Robert Sabuda is well known for his amazing pop-up books.  I wanted to use his pop-up techniques to show my students how paper may be manipulated.  But … Read More

Through the Keyhole Lesson- My Most Popular Writing Prompt

Teaching students to make inferences is a core component of thinking critically.  Using visual writing prompts encourages students to think divergently, and when given time to look and think about the image, students partake in debate about the meaning of … Read More

The A to Z of Picture Books

Want to know what happens after you submit your picture book to a publisher? Last week I attended The A to Z of Picture Books, presented by author Kat Yeh and Rotem Moscovich, Editor at Disney-Hyperion.  The presentation was true … Read More

Five Critical Thinking Websites for You and Your Students

“Kids can’t think anymore,” is something I hear quite often in teaching.  Between Common Core, governmental control over curriculum minutia, and parents who micro-manage, over-schedule and simply do too much for their kids, there is no time for children to … Read More

Use this Story Starter Illustration as Your Next Writing Prompt

Looking for something to write about? Use my illustration, Vegetable Medley, to inspire your next story!

Use the following written story starters and incorporate one or more into your next amazing tale:

  • As the sun went down, he held … Read More

Use Picture Book Art to Write Your Best Story

Whether you are an artist or a writer, staring at a blank page is nerve wracking. We are all looking to be inspired and excited about our craft.  Using art- looking at it for characters, texture, setting and mood- can … Read More

How to Add Texture to Your Painting

There are many ways to incorporate textures into your painting, and I have a few to share.

More and more I am incorporating textures into my art.  When using acrylics, there is no shortage of sands, gels, and impasto mixtures … Read More

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