Monkey see monkey draw

Alex Beard, 1970-

Book - 2011

Elephant leads a troupe of monkeys into a cave they have been afraid to explore, and after admiring the paintings found on the walls they make their own art with mud, squabbling over whose painting is best until Elephant explains that this is not a game to win or lose.

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Subjects
Genres
Picture books
Published
New York : Abrams Books for Young Readers 2011.
Language
English
Physical Description
unpaged : col. ill. 31 cm
ISBN
9780810989702
0810989700
9780810996663
0810996669
Main Author
Alex Beard, 1970- (-)
Review by Publishers Weekly Reviews

Beard uses a group of enthusiastic, spindly blue monkeys who live in a baobab tree in Africa to challenge readers to rethink art and creativity. These lithe, game-loving animals seem to swirl across the pages in stylized pen-and-ink and watercolor pictures that are both comedic and beautiful (the style is in keeping with Beard's The Jungle Grapevine), and the action spills over into the spreads' borders. When the baobab nut they are playing with rolls into a cave, Elephant leads the monkeys inside, where they discover walls decorated with paintings of animals, based on human handprints or footprints. Elephant imprints his muddy hoof on the wall and turns it into a picture of a monkey, delighting his friends with a new game (the monkeys' pointy handprints become the long legs of a giraffe and the jaw of a crocodile, among other creatures). Beard, meanwhile, demonstrates that this "game" isn't just for children--in several scenes, his monkeys' bodies consist of a human thumbprint. As the monkeys squabble about whose drawing is best, Elephant encourages them to "paint and draw just for fun." Kids will follow suit. Ages 4–8. (Jan.) [Page ]. Copyright 2010 PWxyz LLC

Review by School Library Journal Reviews

K-Gr 3—A group of monkeys lives at the foot of the Mbuno Hills in Africa. One of their favorite games is Monkey in the Middle, played with a nut from their baobab tree. One day while they are playing with an elephant, the nut rolls into a cave. The monkeys are afraid to go after it, but the fearless elephant takes them inside to look for it. The animals are amazed to find that the cave is lined with drawings of various animals, and that each picture was formed around a hand- or footprint. When they get back outside, the monkeys dip their hands and feet in mud to make their own paintings. Although rain washes them away, Monkey See, Monkey Draw becomes one of their favorite pastimes. Beard uses his thumbprint to make the playful blue monkeys, and his pen-and-ink with watercolor drawings are swirled with color. In the center of each spread is a large black-lined rectangular box. The artwork in the box extends beyond the lines in most cases, but on some pages, the box is used as a frame for the illustration. An author's note talks about Beard's experience making hand- and footprint art. This book could be useful to teach children how to use the technique, but the expressions on the monkeys' faces may be frightening to some readers. Purchase for large art-oriented collections.—Martha Simpson, Stratford Library Association, CT [Page 116]. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Review by Publisher Summary 1

Elephant leads a troop of monkeys into a cave they have been afraid to explore, and after admiring the paintings found on the walls they make their own art with mud, squabbling over whose painting is best until Elephant explains that this is not a game to win or lose.

Review by Publisher Summary 2

Elephant leads a troupe of monkeys into a cave they have been afraid to explore, and after admiring the paintings found on the walls they make their own art with mud, squabbling over whose painting is best until Elephant explains that this is not a game to win or lose.

Review by Publisher Summary 3

In a charming tale about creativity and overcoming fears, Elephant leads a troupe of monkeys into a cave they have been afraid to explore, and after admiring the paintings found on the walls, the monkeys create their own artwork by using their hands and feet as "stamps" and mud as their medium--but then things get a little more complicated…

Review by Publisher Summary 4

The monkeys that live at the foot of the Mbuno Hills in Africa love to play games. One day while playing Elephant in the Middle with their large friend, their ball, a nut from an ancient baobab tree, rolls into a cave where the troop of monkeys never go. It is dark inside and possibly filled with horrible beasts! When they venture in, they discover instead that the walls are covered with paintings of animals. Elephant shows the monkeys how they too can create artwork using their hands and feet as “stamps” and mud as their medium. But things are never quite as easy as they seem.   Artist Alex Beard brings his love of exploration and painting to life with his signature animals in this charming tale about creativity and overcoming fears.