Finding your Art

Children - Educational
41 Pages
Reviewed on 10/23/2018
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    Book Review

Reviewed by Lesley Jones for Readers' Favorite

Creativity: Finding your Art by Christian Gomez is a powerful and thought-provoking story about three young friends, and how their childhood dreams are replaced by the need for material wealth. Tyrone is an eight-year-old boy who loves to paint landscapes. His friend, Mary, comes from an artistic background and her paintings depict all of the luxurious items that she soon hopes to own. The third friend, Rita, although not as talented, creates abstract paintings, and has no desire for anything but to share her paintings with those who appreciate them. As the friends turn into adults, their passion for creativity is lost to the trappings of materialistic possessions. Discover how losing their focus on what is truly important to them changes each of the three friends' lives. Will they ever realize the importance of being true to their true life's passion?

The subconscious message within the pages of this well-written book is one of the most powerful I have ever read. The positive image of ethnic minorities of one of the characters was also very refreshing. The illustrations were of the highest quality too. The rhyming nature of the story would make it enjoyable for small children to read along with their parents. I feel it is the message behind the story that is the most significant. The author has cleverly shown how important it is for children never to lose focus on living their dreams, which are somehow lost for the majority of children when they reach adulthood through social pressure to chase material goods and not live true to your authentic self. The affirmations were superb and the note to parents again encourages them to support their children in their life goals.

Emily-Jane Hills Orford

Being creative is a passion filled with love. Three friends - Tyrone, Mary and Rita - had the most fun painting and creating. Together. Tyrone was very talented painting landscapes, but his love for green made him greedy for money as an adult and his art lost its allure. Mary painted beautiful portraits of herself and all the treasures she hoped to one day own, but as an adult the lure of these treasures stole her from her art. Rita just painted because she loved it. She wasn’t really very good, but she tried hard and she continued with her passion as an adult. Her paintings attracted attention from around the world and she was the one of the three friends who made a success of her art. Why? When she painted, she created because it was something she loved to do. There has to be passion in creativity. And, in a world full of greed for money and trinkets, keeping that passion alive is a challenge.

Christian Gomez’s picture book story, Creativity: Finding your Art, is all about discovering our internal creative core. We all have it. Especially children. And they need to be encouraged to paint and create, not just because they might be good at it, but more importantly, because they love creating. The story is told, for the most part, in rhyming verse, which is cleverly done. The illustrations are sensational and certainly add the element of “Wow” to a story on creativity. As an artist as well as an author, I can appreciate the importance of the author’s message. In a gadget-filled world, we are, sadly, losing our passion to be creative. Hopefully this story will spark young readers and artists to create – for the love of it.

Jack Magnus

Creativity: Finding your Art is an inspirational picture book for children written by Christian Gomez and illustrated by Adua Hernandez. Tyrone, Mary and Rita were the best of friends who shared one consuming passion -- their art. But while they were close, each of them had their own unique style of painting and distinct artistic vision. Tyrone loved crafting landscapes, envisioning birds flying free over forests, mountains and oceans. His studio was filled with visions of the outdoors. Mary’s vision encompassed skyscrapers and city panoramas, and trappings that were grand and lovely. She reveled in painting herself wearing tiaras and jewels. Rita’s creative spark affirmed itself in a rather different fashion. She lived through her use of colors and trusted the vision within her to prompt her brushstrokes and palette. As they grew up, the friends began thinking differently and their paths diverged.

Creativity: Finding your Art follows the artistic efforts of three friends and it does so brilliantly. I found myself instantly empathetic to Tyrone’s love of landscapes and his desire to make his living from his work, and quickly realized that Mary’s search for affluence would inevitably seem hollow. The real excitement in this story is found, however, in following Rita and her single-minded passion for color, a passion that survives even parental disapproval. Not all kids are born to be great and successful artists, but each one has creative skills and gifts to explore. Rita’s story is the most dramatic as her gift is not initially as obvious but shines most brightly in the end.

Adua Hernandez’s illustrations work so well with the story. I loved seeing Tyrone’s paintings come to life in all their variety and appreciated how Mary’s skills made her skyscrapers and city scenes feel real, but the best magic of all was exemplified in those illustrations of Rita and her marvelous world of colors. Gomez includes a Reader’s Guide which is an excellent springboard for discussions on creativity and art, a list of affirmations, and a glossary. Creativity: Finding your Art is more than a story book; it has the potential to open the doors of possibility in each kid who reads it. It’s most highly recommended.