Art Books for Kids: The Artful Parent : Red Ted Art's Blog

The Artful Parent – Book Review

| April 1, 2013 | 120 Comments

the artful parent (2)The Artful Parent is a long awaited book by the wonderful Jean from The Artful Parent. I have long been an admirer of her creativity and her blog (I remember been smitten by these oh so gorgeous Flower Art Box – how delightfully creative is that?!). She then went on to wow me with her wonderful ebook series – something for all seasons… and then the grand finale: The Artful Parent, the book! (and if you hurry, you can currently get 2 for 1 – The Artful Parent Book AND the Spring ebook. Hurry!

I was expecting a “thicker version of Jean’s ebooks” in print. I got something completely different – and yet much more valuable. I got a parenting ethos. A frame of mind. A different way of thinking – support by a wonderful set of activities and projects to do with the kids.

The Artful Parent

You may remember my “Daily Creativity Series” that I then “rebranded” “Art with Kids“. The idea was to do lots of little bits and pieces of art with the kids on a regular basis. 5minutes here, half an hour there. All about exploration and doing. Well, We dabbled in it. We did a bit here. And  We did a bit there. And then other things and general busy life took over. And we just did the same things over (watercolours, pens, crayons etc).

Jean’s book is my reminder.  To stop.  To make time for ART. Just do it.

And not only was it a reminder to STOP and DO. Jean makes art accessible. Yes, Jean IS an Arty Parent. Yes, Jean HAS tons of art experience. But what her book, The Artful Parent does, is make it easy for YOU, to do art with your kids as well. You do not need an art degree to do art with your kids. You do not need experience. You just need the right frame of mind.. and a set aside a little bit of time. Add to it a host of fantastic simple and approachable ideas, you are off on your arty journey!

In the 10 days since reading Jean’s book, we have:

Q-Tip Painting - a simple and quick arty activity to set up for your kids to explore* Painted with Q-tips

* Got the pastels out

* Got the pastels AND the water colours out

* Collected and saved lots of flower petals from “bunches of flowers” we had in vases… waiting to add these to a contact paper collage

* Saved some broken eggshells for randomly sticking on paper

(PS sorry the little photos are all different! Uploaded via instagram! Must make more consistent use of the filters!)

pastels for kidsNot only that…. but Jean has reassured me that we are already on the arty path. That I am doing well, with what we are doing and that I shouldn’t necessarily worry about not doing enough. We do more arty things without realising, as stimulating creativity, does not just happen in front of an easel or a piece of paper:

* We bake yummy treats

* We hunt for things to craft with in the park

* We plant seeds and watch them grow

watercolour for kids

* We often get the water colours out and Pip Squeak often likes to stick things on her water colour collages

* We draw ALL the time

* We pick flowers (in Granny’s garden) and arrange them in tiny little “vases” (aka bottle tops and small glasses)

* We go to galleries and museums. We look at statues or sculptures in the park or on the street.

* We collect “junk” and stick it together in whatever way Red Ted wants to.

flowers arranging* And of course.. when we get crafty – though product orientated here on the blog, the kids usually end up making something of their own with all the bits and pieces that are out and about.

I am refreshed and inspired to continue the “Art with Kids” series – by just documenting the little things we do.

I recommend this book 100% as a manual to artful parenting! It also has some great featured sections by other arty writes that I love and respect – MaryAnn Kohl, Tinkerlab, Crafty Crow and Inner Child Fun to name but a few!

So. Now to the best bit! You can WIN ONE!! Yes, you can get your very own copy!

To win, visit Jean at The Artful Parent – check out her 2 for 1 posts where she shares a range of artful parent activities – take a look, come back her and tell us which activity you want to try out first!


* One entry per person.

* Open WorldWide.

* Giveaway closes on the 8th April 2013 at 11pm.

* A winner will be picked at random.

* The delivery of the price is the responsibility of the Publisher and not Red Ted Art.

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Comments (120)

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  1. says:

    I really want to try Jeans activity ‘action painting with cars’. My son will love it!. Thanks

  2. Sarah M says:

    We already follow Jean’s blog and love it. Just yesterday we did the “self portrait with window markers’ activity. The kids LOVED it (and I was seriously impressed by how my 4 year old did, just by recognizing the shapes in a face!). It was super fun.
    Sarah M

  3. Samantha deLeca says:

    I would like to try the bubble prints first! Wonderful book!hope I win!I have 4 very creative kids who would love it!

  4. Jess says:

    Simon Says, Draw! – What a unique idea!

  5. Clare says:

    I think my toddler would love the ‘Shaving Cream Painting on the Window’ activity. He just loves getting dirty :).

  6. Dummy Mummy says:

    Action painting with cars sounds like something my 2.5 year old would love to do, and my 10 month old could join in too. This book looks like just what we need to bring some inspiration into our house!

  7. Lyndsey Henderson says:

    Simon says draw is top of my list. So simple and so good. I would love a copy of the book.

  8. Sam says:

    I’ve been following The Artful Parent for a while and enjoy her posts, also wanting this book! We would try Bubble Prints, this might encourage my son to be creative.

  9. Marian says:

    I am going to try the body tracing & painting and the swimming pool ball painting. I love giving my kids an idea that they have a big impact on the world and these two crafts are a great way to show even though they are little their ideas are making a mark on the world and they can participate in something that seems much bigger than they are.

  10. Lucy says:

    I would love to try the contact paper suncatchers with my daughter!

  11. ronnie says:

    This book looks amazing – I would love some new ideas for my 3 kiddos

  12. Dawn Adams says:

    I want to try the bubble popping painting! I do lots of crafts & look for new ideas frequently! I would have fun with my girls & this book!

  13. Lianne Carson says:

    I only get to see my children twice a month but when we meet we have a great time making exploring sticking & imagination.. I would love to have your book join in in our magical fun times!! :)

  14. Anne-Marie Large says:

    Simon Says, Draw! It sounds awesome!

  15. I’m so tempted to try the bubble prints….

  16. I would try bubble prints first!

  17. MamaGames says:

    I’ve followed Jean’s blog for quite some time and gathered lots of inspiration there. We never have gotten around to the kiddie-pool painting, though, and we really want to try that!

  18. Joanne mcdonald says:

    Simon Says, Draw! Looks great.

  19. Sophie Buckle says:

    Bubble Prints: A simple form of printmaking that uses colorful bubbles made from food coloring and water.

    This looks really good!

  20. Tracy Nixon says:

    I think Draw! would be a great activity for all my four! Thank you x

  21. siobhan says:

    I would love to try out ‘Action painting with cars’

  22. Shannon H. says:

    Love the melted bead sun catchers! :)

  23. Mia says:

    I’d love to try the Swimming Pool Ball Painting!

  24. kaci says:

    I have been wanting to try the rubber cement and watercolors resist. It looks like it creats such beautiful results.

  25. alan mcdonald says:

    This book looks fantastic-bubble print a must!

  26. Ailsa says:

    Bubble prints sounds fun, my wee boy loves bubbles so he would love it. I’m not very creative so the book would be perfect for me.

  27. Jill Osborne says:

    The bubble prints sound fun

  28. Emma Hawes says:

    Contact paper suncatchers sound lovely :-)

  29. I think my son would love to do the Shaving Cream Painting on the Window. Not sure my husband would like that but I know my son would enjoy it.

  30. Sunni says:

    BUBBLE Prints!!!

  31. Ashleigh says:

    Simon says draw – great idea!

  32. Abbie Matthews says:

    Love the idea of the body tracing and painting, we have a lovely roll of paper and a big floor space, will certainly be giving this a go!

  33. Emma Bethell says:

    Action painting with cars sounds brill. My 4 year old loves cars and this would really encourage him to have a go!

  34. Allan Smith says:

    This book looks amazing!

  35. hannah oneill says:

    Contact Paper Suncatchers

  36. Emily K says:

    I want to try the shaving cream painting! My mom (a preschool teacher) used to do that activity with my sister and I when we were growing it up and it was always one of our favorites. Can’t wait to share it with my daughter as well.

  37. Tanya W says:

    The contact paper suncatchers look like something my daughter and son would both love to do! Thanks so much for the giveaway!

  38. Nicola Law says:

    My daughter loves drawing but is forever asking me what she can draw so I love the idea of Simon says draw, she also loves games so this idea is a win win for us!

  39. Jen Schofield says:

    The bubble popping painting!

  40. Erin says:

    I would love to read the ideas in this book — we may have to paint with q-tips later today!

  41. Rebecca Collins says:

    Simon says draw is a great idea will be trying it out with my daughter tomorrow.

  42. Melinda says:

    I love the artful parent! she has really nice ideas… easy and nice results… I want to win a copy OF COURSE!

  43. Surabhi says:

    I think Action Painting with Cars would appeal to a lot of different sensibilities for my boy at the same time!

  44. EMMA WALTERS says:

    love to try bubble prints :)

  45. Kinga says:

    We have followed the blog for some time now and would love to try bubble print.

  46. Jo Jones says:

    Bubble prints to try first

  47. Katty says:

    I like Bubble prints. And would try it first.

  48. Catherine McAlinden says:

    Have tried a few of these already, so next on my list is the suncatchers!

  49. Christina Field says:

    I would love to win this book ,so I can show my grand children you can have fun,without tech gadgets.

  50. Amy Kiely says:

    My toddler Ella loves to paint and I think as the weather gets warmer we will be making chalk paint. The sidewalk will be our new canvas!

  51. Lauren Jinkerson says:

    I’d like to try the body tracing and painting. Sounds like a blast for the whole family. Also I like that it can be used to teach something scientific as well.

  52. Karrie Zylstra says:

    I’d love to try the shaving cream art. We think it’s a great bath toy and I’m betting more venues would offer more fun. Windows? I’m scared but willing to give it a go:)

  53. justine meyer says:

    Bubble prints for us we love them

  54. Allison says:

    Body Tracing and Painting will go well with learning about our bodies for science too! Yay, fun art and learning go together! Thanks for the opportunity to win!

  55. Karen R says:

    Love the Bubble Prints!

  56. Jessica S. says:

    I follow the blog and would love to try bubble prints among many many other projects. I love the blog and hope I might win! Yay!

  57. Debbie Kao says:

    I would love to learn how to make bubble prints. My daughter is really into bubbles. How neat to know I can make it with food coloring and water.

  58. Elaine Kidd says:

    My son was asking the other day to do a life size picture of himself. I was going to get a roll of lining paper so I could trace round him. Knowing my luck he will want to trace round me as well.
    I think we will try making the paper suncatchers when the weather gets a bit better.

  59. rachel ringwood says:

    with two creative children it has started to get hard to think of new exciting bits to do with them this is a fantastic idea!!!
    bubble paint would be the first thing we would try!!
    love it!

  60. Deidre says:

    I have to try action painting with cars. . . my son is not into art but my daughter is. I can combine their activities.

  61. Janelle McNeill says:

    How exciting it is to make art come alive in so many ways real for kids. I just know I am supposed to start an art class here in Osaka for my 2.9 year old daughter and the local kids. Art is Life. Art is Learning. Art is Energy. Well Done Jean on allowing all this fun stuff to ooze into our everyday. Thank You. Body Tracing and Drawing is super fun for little ones. We usually do it with chalk on the road, but on huge butchers paper would be even more inspiring! Yes please!

  62. Michelle says:

    I want to do the contact paper sun catchers! I have been meaning to try this one for a while. I can’t wait to check out the book!

  63. shelli says:

    I would love to win a copy of Jean’s book! Thank you!

  64. Kieran says:

    Simon Says, Draw!

  65. Francisca says:

    Hello. I love being among paintings and crafts with my puppy. It gives me joy and I spend delicious time with him . Now that spring has arrived, I’d like to try the suggestions of “artfull parent” related with nature art. I’d like to try the flower prints in Sculpey and in Playdough.

  66. Susan Cottier says:

    All the activities look good but the one we will be trying this week is Simon says draw! I know it will appeal :-)

  67. Dr Mitonaa Chakravartty says:

    We would love to try out the contact paper sun catcher,the car tyre printing and the body tracing/painting,sounds like a wonderful book:)

  68. Olivia says:

    Bubble Prints! We definitely would love to try that one first

  69. Kristina says:

    The Shaving Cream Window Painting! I need to wash my windows next week and this will be the perfect reason to do it!
    thank you!

  70. Sam says:

    The shaving cream painting definately! Very messy and a great sensory craft for a toddler!

  71. Patsy Desautel says:

    Bubble prints, my toddler LOVES to play with bubbles in the summer.

  72. Carrie says:

    Oh, I love the swimming pool ball painting idea.

  73. Joanne McGonagle says:

    I would like to try the Body Tracing and Painting first.

  74. se7en says:

    Oh my word… I am so looking forward to checking out this book!!! I would love to body paint with all my kids and make a massive wall of art!!! I did it when my big kids were small… but it may well be time to do it again!!!

  75. Cris says:

    I’d try the contact paper suncatchers! Especially now that the days are getting longer and there’s more light!!

  76. Trisha says:

    I would love to learn more about quiet art for downtimes and transitions.

  77. Katrina Winn says:

    My Grandson would love the shaving cream window painting

  78. Kate says:

    Definitely need ART inspiration here! Sounds like a great resource.

  79. Solange says:

    Bubble prints

  80. I am so excited she has a book coming out! I’ve been looking forward to it for a while.

  81. Her shaving foam window art looks great. I love her blog and I have been eyeing up this book since the release. Would love it!!!

  82. Louise says:

    Think I will have a go at the swimming pool ball painting when the weather gets better

  83. Circus Queen says:

    I think my daughter would love the bubble prints!

  84. Jenny says:

    I think Action painting with cars would be the first one I would try with my son.

  85. Lisa says:

    I think my daughter would love Action Painting with cars!

  86. Linda Thorn says:

    would love to win the art books
    but I know I have no luck

  87. Well, there are about 500 different activities that I want to try, but for sure the fabric collage doll house (only ours would probably end up being a firehouse or garage) and the spin painting…I just need to get another salad spinner! This book looks amazing!

  88. mansi says:

    hi, i love the artful parent blog and redtedart. Both of you are an inspiration. I would love to win a copy of her book. I love the bubble print activity from her blog.

  89. Chiska says:

    I’d like to try the simon says draw. That sounds really fun!

  90. kelli says:

    Self portraits in the mirror! I also want a large chalkboard hanging in the main room.

  91. Lynda Sanderson says:

    i NEED ANY HELP I CAN GET ……. this is wonderful
    Failed with my children, as I can’t do anything, but I now have the chance with my grandchildren.
    Hope I’m lucky with the book but if not will definetely use this site.
    Thank you

  92. Cheryl Lovell says:

    Action painting with cars!

  93. elisa says:

    action painting with cars or simon says draw – its a toss up!

  94. Yvonne West says:

    Sounds like a great prize. I’d love to get my daughter into more arty activities :)

  95. shane weir says:

    action painting with cars

  96. linda wiles says:

    Anything to encourage children to enjoy art is a must

  97. Mickie Bull says:

    Action Painting With Cars

  98. Emma Smith says:

    I love the idea of bubble printing – sounds like good fun!

  99. Catwoman The Geek says:

    I think my boys would love the bubble printing

  100. Hayley Fountain says:

    bubble printing x

  101. Helen says:

    I would love to try the bubble prints with my granddaughter; it sounds messy but, hey, never mind, we’ll cover up and have a whale of a time I’m sure.

  102. Dawn Canning says:

    ‘Bubble prints’ look just amazing!

  103. DAWN TOTTON says:

    The bubble printing sounds fab!

  104. pauline jepson says:

    this book looks amazing with some really great ideas

  105. Sarah says:

    simon says draw :)

  106. Justin Parker says:

    bubble printing

  107. emma hunt says:

    I’d love to try the bubble prints, that sounds like fun :-)

  108. Antonia Rookley says:

    Bubble prints! Remember doing them as a child and having great fun!!

  109. Deborah Bird says:


  110. lindsey bluff says:

    the bubble prints sound fantastic, me and my daughter love arts and crafts time

  111. Isabelle Smith says:

    bubble prints xx

  112. tishist says:

    bubble prints

  113. marie says:

    My daughter is 2 1/2 and she loves to draw around her hands, so I’m sure she would like the Body Tracing and Painting

  114. Tammy Tudor says:

    Shaving cream painting on the window haha very original looks like great fun must give it a try! :)

  115. Susie M says:

    Bubble prints sound great fun, especially outdoors on a sunny day so we could make lots of mess!

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