Review Blog

Jul 12 2019

Paint with magic by Sandi Wooton

cover image

Illus. by Pat Kan. Big Sky Publishing, 2019. ISBN: 9781922265098.
(Age: 4-8) Themes: Painting, Sea Animals, Rhyming Story. This is a first picture book for poetry writer Sandi Wooton and her poetic story is the perfect accompaniment to Pat Kan's vibrant painted illustrations. This was previously published as a poem in the NSW School Magazine but it suits a printed book format really well. The cover is particularly enticing, cleverly using sea creature features and a paint brush to create the letters of the title. The story begins 'I sat in my room on a cold rainy day, trying to think of a fun game to play. I grabbed my new paintbox from under the table. 'Paint with Magic' it said on the label.' After painting an octopus it shouts out to the artist, 'Hey you, with the paintbrush . . . I've only got seven. You've left off one arm.' There clearly is magic inside this paint! From there it continues with the octopus helping the artist to paint a complete underwater scene. We never see the artist, apart from a pair of hands, so it is easy for the reader to put themselves inside the story and will hopefully inspire them to be creative in their own artworks. This is a great celebration of imagination and the freedom that painting brings. Children will love how the octopus and the artist work together to create the scene and how the artist wrangles back control by painting in a shark!
Nicole Nelson

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