We’re hoping you did not miss out on the Annual Mt. Airy Kids’ Literary Festival at the Big Blue Marble over the weekend, but just in case you did, we have some highlights to share in hopes that you put it on your calendar for next year.
The event kicked off with a bang as the passion for literary and visual arts engaged both children and their caregivers. They not only wowed us with their books read aloud, they also explained how their books evolved, from sketching to photo shop to publication. A fascinating process for kids to wrap their little heads around.
“Some choose art, for others art chooses them”. Brian Biggs, author and illustrator, shared his personal story and journey in relationship to children’s books he’s written, such as Things That Go, a robustly colorful book influenced by living in cities such as San Francisco, New York and Phily.
After all the anticipation with kids in the audience demanding a read aloud, he finally opened one up, and all were pleased! His illustrations in The Boy Who Cried Alien, a rendition of the classic boy who cried wolf story were enough to make any kid wiggle in their chair. It’s a delightfully poetic book with coded language, narration, dialogue and unique graphics. When asked what parents could do in encouraging the artistic abilities in children, he said, “When they’re drawing let that freak flag fly. Encourage it, let it get out.”
Brian expanded upon how the shared experiences with his own kids feeds into to his illustrations and storytelling. His real-time moments help to create childhood stories other kids and parents can appreciate and enjoy. He offers a few ideas to help develop and nurture the artistic child:
Honor the moment.
Elicit dialogue about what’s going on around and inside of you.
Analyze spaces and places.
Find meaning and make connections.
For those who are aspiring as artists and want to transform passion into career, Brian had one last bit of advice: “Be fearless in the pursuit of art.”
And fearless they were! Young aspiring writers also shared their own works published in Philadelphia Stories Jr., the only regular on-line and in-print publication designed for K-12 writers and audiences in the Delaware Valley. Stephanie of Philadelphia Stories tipped us off to a free upcoming Premier at Musehouse on Germantown Avenue on May 12, from 3-5 p.m. If you want to learn more about his great resource for kids who want to be recognized for their talent, or just be a support for young people sharing their passion for the arts, visit: http://www.philadelphiastories.org/philadelphia-stories-junior-submission-guidelines
Or visit Musehouse at: http://www.musehousecenter.com/about/home.htm
To learn more about Brian Biggs and his work visit:http://mrbiggs.com/
And if you made it to the literary festival, we encourage you to share your experience and insights!
NW Philly Parents is a partnership between Newsworks and Germantown Avenue Parents.