Amy Forrester's Reviews > Bear's Picture

Bear's Picture by Daniel Pinkwater
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's review
Apr 16, 2012

it was amazing

A bear wants to paint a picture. So he gets out his paper, brushes, and paints and begins to create. He’s blissfully painting when two gentlemen happen upon the bear. One is short and round, the other tall and slim. As soon as they see the bear painting they begin criticizing the artwork. “Bears can’t paint.” “Besides it’s a silly picture.” Exasperated, the bear defends his painting as the two men inch closer to figure out “what it is supposed to be.” Before they know it, the men have stepped inside the bear’s creation and then bear begins painting them into the composition until they disappear saying, “Bears are not the sort of fellows to paint pictures.” When they’re gone bear looks at his picture and finds he’s very happy with his painting.

This story not only celebrates the creation of artwork, it also turns the tables on art critics. The bear never asks for anyone’s opinion on his painting, he just feels the need to create. The critics on the other hand never admit that their point of view might be too rigid and structured, even as they disappear into the painting. The text is mostly dialogue and the story moves along quickly. The text and illustrations really go hand in hand. The illustrations were done with mixed media and somehow give the impression of being flat and three dimensional at the same time. The characters are rendered in grayscale, which pulls the reader’s focus to the bear’s colorful painting. Speaking of the painting, make sure to turn the final picture of the painting upside and take a look.

Full Review at Picture-Book-a-Day:

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