For the next few Fridays we’ll look at some picture books created to inspire children to be creative themselves. Some tell the story of a famous artist or photographer. Others encourage children to create something themselves.

61v3frnalrl-_sx472_bo1204203200_The first is Action Jackson written by Jan Greenberg and Sandra Jordan. It is illustrated by Robert Andrew Parker. Roaring Brook Press published Action Jackson in 2002.

The book begins with a disclaimer that not every detail of the story is factual. However, the sequence of events, the personal habits of artist Jackson Pollock and his method of painting are factual.


The biographical details of Jackson Pollock’s life are minimized in this picture book. What is emphasized is his creative process. He used ordinary house paint and ordinary canvas. He painted in an old barn. He sat and thought a LOT before he started each project, and often in the middle of the process. He described his paintings as “energy and motion made visible.”

I think the most inspiring portions of this picture book are Pollock’s use of ordinary materials, his less than artistic education and his unique style.

The Back Matter of the book gives biographic details and bibliographic information for sources the authors and illustrator used. I think teachers will find Action Jackson especially useful.

2 Comments on “ACTION JACKSON

  1. Thanks! I appreciate your finding and reviewing these books on creativity. BTW, I’m reading the book you suggested awhile back , Scribbles in the Sand by Michael Card. I’ve always been a fan of his. (once saw him perform in person with John Michael Talbot) and am enjoying his insights! Here are two I think you would enjoy that are in the same vein–Windows of the Soul by Ken Gire and Echoes of Eden by Jeram Barrs. Both look at literature, movies, etc. and how they can be “windows” and “echoes” that lead us to Christ.

    • Thanks. I’m glad the Card book is helpful. I have several of Gire’s books and refer back to them often. Echoes of Eden is new to me. I’ll order it tonight!

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