Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

Pablo the Artist

Pablo the Artist

Satoshi Kitamura
Picture Book
For ages 4 to 6
Farrar, Straus and Giroux , 2006   ISBN: 978-0374356873

The members of the Hoof Lane Art Club are very excited. There is going to be an exhibition of their work and they are all very busy getting ready for the important event. Everyone is busy except for Pablo that is. Pablo has painted several paintings and nothing feels right to him. His friend and fellow painter suggests that Pablo should go outside to paint a landscape. Perhaps a change of scene will get rid of his "artist's block."

So the very next morning Pablo goes out into the country to paint. He works hard all morning and soon he has a good beginning of a painting on his canvas. Then he has his lunch and feeling weary, he lies down for a nap. As he naps, Pablo has a dream, an inspirational dream in which a series of animals come along and add to a half finished painting, adding little touches according to their individual tastes.

When he wakes up Pablo is inspired and he creates a painting which ends up making him "the toast of the town."

Thanks to a little encouragement from his dream critics, Pablo discovers what his painting needs to make it special and readers are reminded that sometimes we need to look through other people's eyes to get a fresh picture of a scene. Sometimes inspiration requires a little bit of a helping hand and all it needs is a new perspective or point of view.

Satoshi Kitamura’s distinctive cartoon style artwork is, as always, both entertaining and highly expressive.