Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Numbers Can Inspire Images; New Doodles Book Shows Kids an Easy but Creative Way to Draw

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Numbers Can Inspire Images; New Doodles Book Shows Kids an Easy but Creative Way to Draw

Article excerpt

Byline: Brandy Hilboldt Allport

When a toddler presents his parents a papered covered in Pollack-esque squiggles and announces "cat," Mom and Dad smile, nod and head for the refrigerator to find a magnet. Such utter artistic confidence and delight often disappear as children grow older. First-graders, disappointed that their painting of a frog doesn't look like the one in the book, start to say, "I can't draw. It's too hard."

If your child is in this stage, look for 2 is for Toucan: Oodles of Doodles from 0 to 42 by Deborah Zemke (Blue Apple Books, $12.95; ages 6 and older).

This sequel to D is for Doodle shows kids how numbers can be transformed into recognizable figures with the addition of a few simple lines. The example of how to turn a O into a baseball isn't hard to picture, even if you aren't looking at the page from the book. Turning an 8 into a tarantula by adding some legs seems pretty doable, too. But what can you do with the number 23? Make a whale, of course. Need a castle? Start with 41. By using the basic lines (zigzag, curve, teardrop, arch, etc.) introduced at the beginning of the book, drawing an armadillo, swan, moose or a mad hatter actually is as easy as 1, 2, 3.

WHAT'S NEW?

Here are a few more recently released titles to look for when you browse libraries and bookstores.

-- With his sold-out concert at the Veteran's Memorial Arena Tuesday night, and a touring show of the musical Movin' Out on the way, January is the month to be in a Billy Joel state of mind. While you're listening to his tunes, flip through a copy of Billy Joel: New York State of Mind (Byron Preiss Book; $16.99; all ages). It comes, appropriately enough, with a CD of Joel singing the familiar ode to the Big Apple. The text of the picture book consists of the lyrics, so the pictures are the real crowd pleasers. Soft water colors washed loosely onto the page by Izak Zenou create a warm, vibrant feeling. The scenes beacon readers to marvel at the height of the Empire State or check out what's on display in the shops and restaurants of Chinatown. On the page where theatergoers crowd the Broadway district, notice the marquee in the upper lefthand corner. …

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