Painting with children

2Self-isolation has worked fine for me over the last couple of weeks. I was finishing illustrations for a book written by the lovely Joyce Dunbar. I started working on the illustrations some time ago, but travelling and doing other things in between, kept me away from this lovely book. So now I have had time to enjoy working on the illustrations and finish off the book.

In the last couple of weeks I have also enjoyed watching illustrators and writers reading their books and inspiring children to draw. Lots of bad things have happened in the world recently, but we have also started to realise that lots of very good things are happening too. Families spend more time together. Time has stopped for a while and it allows people to do things they hadn’t got around to doing before. Some of these is playing more with their children and being creative.

I love going to schools and making art with children and I get lots of pictures to take home. Some pictures are also posted to me by email.IMG_5698

Here are paintings by children from St. George’s CE Primary School in Worcester. Slide1

They were inspired by  ‘A First Book of Animals’ written by Nicola Davies and illustrated by me. This is a picture of a bird of paradise.Birds of Paradise

Here are the wolves from the same book.Slide1 copy 2



And a sailfish. One of my favourites!

Slide1 copy


Looking at this amazing artwork I feel it should be me who should gets inspired by their work and who should do the copies of this gorgeous artwork.

In my previous blog I showed how to draw a mouse from my book. I received quite a few excellent drawings of mice. Here is one done by Vitek.IMG_5852

Here is Honzík being very busy.honza

And here is Paul and his stunningly beautiful elephant.paul

The elephants seem to be popular! This one from Miriam is also a master piece!Miriam

I was asked to do a colouring sheet. As a child I didn’t like colouring very much. I would prefer to draw a picture myself, but you can always take it as inspiration to draw your own jungle. So here is a colouring sheet. A garden with … an elephant.

Here are some colouring tips: the elephant could be blue – use as many different blue pencils as you can find and mix them together. Thinking of that, the elephant could also be also pink….or orange. Do the same for the grass – use as many greens as you have in your pencil case. Mix yellow and green to get a really bright spring grass colour. Mixing colours makes the picture bright. Have fun!  If you’d like to show me via instagram don’t forget to add #petrhoracek, or twitter @PHoracek, or send them to me by email through my website.

Scan 2

The Art of the Picture Book

“You’re too old for a picture book.” Is something I hear parents saying to their children from time to time. A common mistake. Nobody is too old for a picture book.

endpaper 2Last week I had an email from Sarah Balint, who is a librarian at the Kingston Frontenac Public Library in Canada. Sarah is running a six week project every year, introducing  children and adults to the art of picture books. Together they look and read picture books and discuss the artwork. They make art.Collection of Three, Winter 2020

I am honoured to be one of the authors Sarah chose. She sent me a couple of pictures that the children made. The email made my day. Not just to see the lovely pictures inspired by my books, but also knowing that people like Sarah, librarians and teachers, are making an effort to introduce people to the art of picture books.Amy and Andy's Ducks, Winter 2020

A good picture book doesn’t teach children only to be interested about reading. It is developing a child’s  imagination, encouraging their creativity, teaching them to be observant and investigative too and it makes them interested in visual art.Spring 2019, Mallory's Rainbow with BookSlide1

A good picture book slows time. It makes you think.

Spring 2019, Rabbit with book


We are spending more time at home with children at this time of “corona”, so here are a couple of pictures illustrating how to paint a mouse. Why don’t you have a go?

all the best


1. Little Mouse2. Little Mouse3. Little Mouse 4. Little Mouse6. Little Mouse7. Little Mouse8. Little Mouse9. Little Mouse10. Little Mouse11. Little Mouse12. Little Mouse13. Little Mouse14. Little Mouse15. Little Mouse16. Little Mouse17. Little Mouse18. Little Mouse