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Kids school and holiday art clubs

Children’s Illustration for Wimbledon Bookfest

We were invited to work with Wimbledon Bookfest this year to put on a two day illustration course for children.


Artist Ania Bas and Illustrator Amy Pennington took on the challenge to lead a group of children in activities that helped them develop ideas on a grand scale for new characters.These characters began larger than life then were edited down to form smaller drawings that could begin their life in a new story.

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We began the afternoon with some warm up activities – some small drawings and an opportunity to get our bodies moving.

DSC_0019 DSC_0024We then did a giant collaborative drawing looking at each other for inspiration. We tried not to take our crayon off the page to help us look at one another carefully. It also broke the ice and helped us get to know one another.

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Continuing to look at portraiture – a crucial skill for illustration – we worked in pairs to draw one another’s portrait

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We then cut the portrait in half and joined it back together to create a new morphed person. Strange looking twins appeared!

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We then began to talk abut Alice in Wonderland and the illustrations made of her. We talked about her character and what she was like compared to the modern woman. Did she look like the kind of girl who would disappear down a rabbit hole and discover a world of new adventures?


We then went through the looking glass ourselves and started to develop our own character, thinking about its likes, dislikes, fears and strengths.

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Our new charters started to emerge.

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We would create our character in three sections – head, body and feed – like a giant game of exquisite corps – a game invented by the surrealists.


Starting with the head, we used collage to create some weird and wonderful faces.

DSC_0153 DSC_0172 DSC_0170 DSC_0174 DSC_0195 DSC_0196 DSC_0197 DSC_0198 DSC_0199 DSC_0200 DSC_0182We then got the paints out to make the body.

DSC_0204 DSC_0215 DSC_0228The characters really started to emerge and come to life and we finished them off with a variety of drawing materials when adding their legs.

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They were truly marvellous when all laid out together!

DSC_0269 DSC_0268 DSC_0266 DSC_0264 DSC_0263 DSC_0262 DSC_0260 DSC_0259 DSC_0258 DSC_0257 DSC_0256 DSC_0252 DSC_0250We finished by drawing a small A4 version of our creation – pairing down it’s features in an editing process often used by illustrators.


Finally we ended up with a giant game of exquisite corps! Moving round the pieces to see what new creatures would emerge.

DSC_0287We hope everyone had fun and for those of you coming back next week – we will start taking these characters on a new adventure…there are still a few places left if you’d like to come back!

Book via the bookfest website.






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