Matisse Artist Widget

Henri Matisse was a twentieth century French artist. His characteristic style included flat, brilliant colors and fluid lines. Later in his career, Matisse concentrated on a technique called papiers découpés (paper cutouts). Try making your own painting with Matisee-like paper cutouts:

  • Choose cutouts and drag to the canvas
  • See what changes you can make by clicking on the buttons below the canvas.
  • Print your design.
  • Have fun!

Try Action Painting Like Jackson Pollock

Jackson Pollock (1912-1956) developed a unique style of abstract expressionism. He would drip paint on his canvas in order to create his paintings. His paintings used a technique called "action painting." You can create an abstract painting by clicking on the canvas above. Move your mouse to create your own action painting. Click your mouse to change colors.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Monday, April 20, 2009

Art Education

Abrakadoodle Honored with “Go Green” Award

Art for kids is a wonderful way to introduce recycling activities! Abrakadoodle remarkable art education was recognized for its innovative “Green” company philosophy and art programs with a 2009 award presented by S&S® Worldwide. Abrakadoodle has developed recycling alliances with fellow franchise suppliers Fast Frames, Signs by Tomorrow. More recently Sign-A-Rama joined the Abrakadoodle’s Green Franchise Initiative by recycling unused or discarded sign materials that are used in Abrakadoodle programs to build sculptures, create fine art or provide unique painting canvases! Abrakadoodle has also introduced Eco-Papers (100-percent recycled paper frames with eco friendly dyes) in its art programs for children. Abrakadoodle is proud to paint a green path to a brighter future.

Green Kids in a Colorful World™ was designed by Abrakadoodle in 2007 to teach children about how they can help make the planet healthier while creating 2-D and 3-D masterpieces using recycled materials including plastic bottles, tubes, packaging materials and more. Students create whimsical Santon statues inspired by peasants from the Provence region of France. They sculpt masterpieces in the style of Tiffany, paint CD’s with colorful geometric designs like Piet Mondrian.
Inspired by the Cool Globes project,, Abrakadoodle program designers in 2008 created a workshop to help raise awareness about global warming while fostering art skills and creativity. The in-school field trip and workshop includes an interactive presentation that helps children learn how they can help live and create more eco-friendly. Children then make their own cool globes, applying what they have learned. Students increase their knowledge about best practices for helping the environment, and they develop a “green” vocabulary, as well as express their individual creativity about being green.
In continuing Abrakadoodle’s commitment to being green, Abrakadoodle creates and introduces new and innovative programs for children including a variety of art classes, camps and special events that emphasize creativity using recycled materials and teaches students about big and small ways in which they can care for our planet. With music, movement, phenomenal themes and cool art activities, kids will be inspired to save the planet while building visual arts skills, creativity and confidence. Abrakadoodle’s remarkable education programs help kids learn to create a more colorful, sustainable world.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Art for Kids

New thinking about doodling

Research has long shown that art benefits children in many ways. Art education opens children’s minds and helps them become more tolerant. It also improves student’s academic performance and helps them develop the skills needed for the 21st century workplace – critical thinking, creative problem solving, effective communication, teamwork and more. New research published February 27, 2009 in the Journal of Applied Cognitive Psychology shows that the act of “doodling” may help improve memory recall. Study researcher Professor Jackie Andrade, Ph.D., of the School of Psychology, University of Plymouth said, "This study suggests that in everyday life doodling may be something we do because it helps to keep us on track with a boring task, rather than being an unnecessary distraction that we should try to resist doing."

Promote creative doodling at home. Encourage your children not only to draw but to be inspired to stretch their imaginations and take their minds on a mini vacation. Take a moment from the busy day to be playful with art activities. Instead of a coloring book, give your child a blank sketch pad. Suggest that your child doodle a special creature, a new spaceship, a fanciful friend, or playful word art. Have some fun by offering themes or ideas that will spark your child’s creativity. Abrakadoodle remarkable art offers some online creativity games for kids – see

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Art Education

Creative Children's Art Welcomes President Obama

Art is a wonderful tool for children's self-expression, and art students at participating Abrakadoodle locations nationwide shared their patriotism and visions for America as part of a colorful welcome for President Barack Obama.

Some students learned about the art of Jasper Johns as an inspiration for their art. They learned about Pop Art, encaustic painting and the use of texture. Children tried out smaller, quicker brush strokes in the style of Jasper Johns as they created American flags.

Other students learned about the life and words of Martin Luther King, Jr. and called upon his famous "I Have a Dream" speech to draw inspiration to bring their own dreams for the future into a work of art using words, images and shapes. Some children created Presidential Seals using model magic, while others created mobiles with inspirational phrases. One student literally made Presidential "seals" as shown left.

Children also created poster art in the collage style of contemporary artist Shepard Fairey, whose portrait of Barack Obama will be displayed at the National Portrait Gallery in Washington, D.C.

Art for Kids

Art and History Prove to be a Powerful Combination

Art education has a special place at the Barrier Islands Center, an historic site on Virginia’s Eastern Shore. Abrakadoodle offers special workshops, after school classes, art enrichment programs and summer camps for children. In some cases, Abrakadoodle customizes its visual arts lessons that teach children to use their imaginations as they render creative works that depict the islands’ early inhabitants, seascapes, as well as its unique vegetation, coastal birds and fish.
Abrakadoodle art students at the Barrier Islands Center participate in an Art Rocks workshop. Their art works are based upon the style of Shepard Fairey, the contemporary artist whose portrait of Barack Obama will soon grace the National Gallery Art. These creations were sent to the White House to welcome President Obama.

“Because the Barrier Islands Center is located in one of Virginia’s most impoverished communities, we are particularly grateful for the community participation of programs like Abrakadoodle,” stated Laura Vaughan, Executive Director of Barrier Islands Center. “Monika and Abrakadoodle not only provide valuable educational programming, but they also help bring dollars and boost interest and participation that are so important right now as we face tough economic times.”

For nearly four years, Abrakadoodle has been partnering with the Barrier Islands Center ( to creatively engage children, as well as to help raise funds to help further the center’s mission.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Artists for Kids

Art education is so important in today’s world. Creativity is an important element of children’s education. It not only helps students master traditional subjects like English, science, and math, but also brings cultural awareness. Charlotte Derain was born in Paris in 1949. She is a painter, designer, graphic designer and illustrator. Her Martinican origin was a source of creative inspiration while she found her own style. She devotes her career searching for her African roots. Derain brings art for kids by inviting them to reflect on their roots while being aware of other cultures.

What Kids Can Learn From Derain

(Art for Kids)

Charlotte Derain is known for her African figures. The figures are simple, but show movement. Children learn about stick figures and how to paint them in different poses. Also, they can practice painting clothes on the figures with swatches of paint. Charlotte brings art for kids with simple shapes.

Art education is about diversity. Derain’s artwork tells stories with her pictures. Instead of writing she paints life in Africa. Children can be inspired by her creativity to create a story representing their roots. Derain brings art to kids by introducing cultural art to their curriculum.
Charlotte Derain: Painter, inspired by "Woman wiht Basket"

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Art for Kids

Stress-Busting Gets Creative

Art education can help children cope with worries. Children under stress tend to bottle up their feelings, creating emotional and physical effects. With negative news dominating our newspapers and airwaves – from a struggling economy and war to issues closer to home with worried parents, less disposable income and school stress -- children need to find healthy ways to manage. Art is one of the best ways you can help your children develop skills to express themselves and liberate their feelings to help maintain healthy emotional well-being.

The key in reducing or eliminating unhealthful stress is to provide children with the tools and attention to deal with stress and by giving them a healthy outlet that sets them up with coping skills for life.

Artful calming

Art for kids should be all about originality and creativity. You can create a space at home that promotes imaginative play:

* Set up a creativity center that your children can access, which contains lots of paper, crayons, markers, nontoxic paints and brushes, modeling compounds (like Crayola Model Magic®) and more;
* You can spiff up your creativity center by encouraging your children to add recycled materials from around the house (paper towel and toilet paper tubes; bows, ribbon, bottle caps, postcards, printer paper and more;
* Identify a place where your children can create art, such as your kitchen or a coffee table. Set up the rules, such as working on plastic or newspaper;
Instead of plopping down in front of the TV or a video game, encourage your children to grab their creativity tools and make something new;
* Create meaningful patterns, such as sitting with your children before they start their art, and teach them a relaxation technique. Tell them to shut their eyes, take a deep breath while they count to five and then slowly exhale while counting to five. Play with the idea, such as “in through the nose and out through the mouth” and “in through the mouth and out through the nose;”
* Never ever judge your children’s artwork. You want to empower them to use art to express their ideas, thoughts and feelings.

Above all, children need to know that they are loved and supported. Give hugs and model grace, calm and problem-solving. Sometimes children need just 15 minutes of your undivided attention. They need to turn off the TV and sources of distraction and learn to turn within to tap their own imaginations where a world of creative adventure awaits.

Art classes are another wonderful way to promote stress-busting, while fostering imaginative learning and developing new visual arts skills, technique and vocabulary. Learn more about Abrakadoodle remarkable art classes, in-school field trips, workshops, camps and parties: