Peter H. Reynolds, 1961-

Book - 2004

Ramon loses confidence in his ability to draw, but his sister gives him a new perspective on things.

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Picture books
Cambridge, Mass. : Candlewick Press 2004.
Main Author
Peter H. Reynolds, 1961- (-)
1st ed
Physical Description
unpaged : ill
Contents unavailable.
Review by Booklist Review

PreS-Gr. 2. Reynolds' previous book, The Dot 0 (see Top 10 Arts Books for Youth on p.497), imparted an important message to kids about the various ways in which art can be defined. This has a similar message, but unlike the character in The Dot,0 who doesn't believe she can draw, Ramon loves to draw. In fact, he draws wherever he can, even on the toilet. But after his older brother laughs at his work, Ramon loses confidence; none of his drawings look right to him anymore. He's about to quit drawing when his sister shows him that she has kept all his crumpled efforts. Now he understands that though he doesn't draw exact replicas (his trees are only "tree-ish"), the response his art engenders is what matters. It's likely that fewer children will identify with Ramon than with the girl in the previous book, but this certainly has a strong message, and the overriding theme about creativity versus exactitude will resonate with many. The line-and-color artwork is simple, but it has great emotion and warmth. Kids will respond to that, too. --Ilene Cooper Copyright 2004 Booklist

From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.
Review by Publisher's Weekly Review

As simple yet stimulating as Reynolds's The Dot, this tale centers on another youngster questioning his artistic ability. Spot illustrations portray Ramon as a cheerful boy who loves to draw "anytime" (he draws in bed), "anything" (he paints pictures of trash cans) and "anywhere" (readers will giggle at the sight of him perched on the toilet, drawing pad on his lap). But his self-confidence plummets when Ramon's older brother laughs at his attempts to draw a vase of flowers ("What is that?"). After months and crumpled attempts at trying to make his pictures look "right," the frustrated child puts his pencil down, announcing, "I'm done." His younger sister runs off with one of the discarded drawings and when he chases her to her bedroom, he discovers (in a moment reminiscent of The Dot) she has created a "crumpled gallery" of his work. Pointing to his attempted rendering of the flower vase, the girl calls it "one of my favorites." When Ramon complains, "That was supposed to be a vase of flowers," she supportively responds, "Well, it looks vase-ish!" Ramon then feels "light and energized. Thinking ish-ly allowed his ideas to flow freely." Reynolds's minimalist pen-and-ink illustrations feature subtle washes of watercolor and ample splashes of emotion and humor. A tidy lesson in the importance of thinking-or drawing-outside the box and believing in one's own abilities despite others' reactions. Ages 5-up. (Sept.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Review by School Library Journal Review

K-Gr 3-Reynolds follows The Dot (Candlewick, 2003) with this companion story about creativity and the artistic process. Ramon loves to draw: "Anytime. Anything. Anywhere." When his older brother laughs at one of his pictures and points out that it does not look like a real vase of flowers, a dejected Ramon crumples up all of his efforts. However, he soon learns that his younger sister has hung the discarded papers on her bedroom walls. When he declares that the picture of the vase doesn't look like the real thing, she says that it looks "vase-ISH." The child then begins to produce paintings that look "tree-ish," "afternoon-ish," and "silly-ish." His "ish art" inspires him to look at all creative endeavors differently. The watercolor, ink, and tea illustrations have a childlike charm. Set against white backgrounds, the quirky line drawings and restrained use of color combine to create an attractive, unique picture book. The small size lends itself to one-on-one sharing and thoughtful examination. Ish, like Leo Lionni's Frederick (Knopf, 1967), encourages readers to see the world anew.-Shawn Brommer, South Central Library System, Madison, WI (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

(c) Copyright Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Review by Horn Book Review

Ramon draws constantly+until his older brother's hurtful ""WHAT is THAT?"" makes him quit. Ramon's sister finally convinces him that a drawing of a vase, e.g., need only look ""vase-ISH."" The story is too brazenly didactic for the characters to come alive, but the heavy subject matter is lightened by Reynolds's humble prose and art, which consists of small tinted images on stark white pages. (c) Copyright 2010. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. All rights reserved.

(c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Review by Kirkus Book Review

A lovely tale about the trials of a budding artist brought to us by the author/illustrator of Dot (2003). Ramon creates drawings at a furious pace. Everywhere he goes, he draws. But there's nothing like a derisive older brother to put the kibosh on a sensitive artist type. Suddenly, Ramon becomes self-critical. He cannot satisfy his own desire to get things "right" anymore, so he decides to put away his pencil for good. Luckily another family member, his sister, has secretly been collecting Ramon's art for her own private gallery. She convinces him that a successful drawing need not be a perfect reflection of reality. It's okay if a house looks house-ish or a fish looks fish-ish. It is just the liberating sentiment Ramon needs to reignite his creativity. Told in spare prose with Reynolds's signature line drawings in watercolor, ink, and tea, Ish will encourage other little artists. (Picture book. 4-6) Copyright ©Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Copyright (c) Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.