Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

M is for Masterpiece: An Art Alphabet

M is for Masterpiece: An Art Alphabet

David Domeniconi
Illustrator:  Will Bullas 
Nonfiction Picture Book  Series
For ages 5 to 9
Sleeping Bear Press, 2006   ISBN: 978-1585362769

If you have ever been to an art gallery then you will know that these wonderful places can be fascinating. They can also be confusing. How did the artists create these works of art? Why do the modern ones look so different from the older ones? How did the painters make things on the canvases look three dimensional? Who are these painters that they keep talking about?

In this beautiful and carefully presented alphabet book, the author and illustrator explain all kinds of things about art which, for many of us, are fascinating mysteries. On the B page we learn all about brushes, that essential tool for painters. Who would have thought that there could be so many kinds, but there are, and because there are, brushes can produce a great many effects. On the D page we look at drawing and we see how a simple drawing of a duck is transformed from a crude charcoal outline to a charming colored pencil rendering which seems to look right out at us from the page. I is for Impressionism, that form of art which was scoffed at when it came out in France in the late 1800?s but which is beloved by millions of people all over the world today.

For each letter of the alphabet and for each topic the author has created a short poem. This is perfect for the younger reader, who can enjoy the poem and look at the accompanying artwork behind it. The artwork beautifully illustrates the poems and often provides the reader with information about the topic being described. For the older reader there is a sidebar which elaborates on the topic further. Thus this book can be enjoyed on a number of levels and it can grow with the reader.

This is one of a series of highly recommended alphabet books published by Sleeping Bear Press.