Thursday, January 20, 2011

Drawing For Kids - video series for preK - 3rd

Ok, This is totally embarrassing but I'm putting it up here because it fits with the whole children's book theme of this blog. Be prepared - you're going to see some bad acting. Someone long ago should have told me to take acting courses because you almost need those skills to keep kids engaged...either that or just act stupid. My sister Ellen is a reading specialist in Maryland and she's always telling me how lame some peoples school visits are. In her words, "No, Will, you have no idea...the guy read in a monotone voice material that was way above grade level and had no pictures to show"..."Then he talked to 1st graders like they were adults...the kids were squirming almost as much as the teachers!"

So, enter my series, "Drawing For Kids". My idea was simple - use the fast evolving internet marketing idea of providing value and driving traffic to your website. Seems simple but in the back of my mind I'm thinking, "This is a lot of effort with no guaranteed return."

Earlier last year I had a conversation with myself and decided to agree on a mission statement for myself. What we came up with was less than earth shattering but satisfying for me and the voice inside: 1) Create the best art I can. 2) Be smart with my time. 3) Provide value to the world. 4) Help others to realize their dreams.
The rules are simple but not always that easy to follow. But making these videos clearly fit into number 4 so I decided to put them out there for free and hope that teachers could find them.

I'm not going to pretend that I'm not hopeful that by having my books and website in the background I sell more books and get more paying school visits - but the main purpose of these videos is to teach children. I've seen too many attempts to create value but then muck it up with a crass commercial interruption that leaves the viewer feeling like the whole thing was a waste of time. Anyway Making this took the better part of a weekend and now that they are finished I can sit back and smile every time a teacher sends me their students artwork - so far three different teachers have sent in their students work - that's a huge payoff!

You can view all 5 videos here:

Also I have a new teacher section on my website:


  1. These are wonderful! Thoroughly enjoyable! I passed them along to a friend who is a Music/Art teacher!

  2. Will, I think it's really great that you give back like that. Young kids will really respond to these videos.

  3. Speaking as one of Will's previous students I would recommended his videos to anyone who has an desire to learn illustration or how to illustrate for children's books! Will does a great job breaking down complex subjects so anyone can understand and apply the principals he teaches.

  4. I just watched the first couple of videos from your photoshop painting series. Fantastic! I would recommend it whole heartedly.... and don’t worry, Will doesn’t talk on the video like he does to the kids in this video :o) LOL Will... you ROCK! I bet the kids love you!


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