Sunday, June 17, 2012

Collecting Children's Art: The Young Artist Will See You Now

I love children's art. In fact, I love it so much that if I see a great eye for color, or themes that catch my attention, I'm not above badgering the underage children of good friends for a one-of-a-kind, made-especially-for-me original by the artist. Children do not like this. They can smell when you really, really want something, and become suspicious and unwilling very quickly.
But I've been known to get lucky every once in a while. I bought the picture above, for example, on Ebay for $1. The artist was saving for a bike and her mother set up an Ebay gallery and matched every dollar she made with five. 

The one below was made for me in 2004 by my good friend Perla Farias' lovely daughter, Juliette. It is my very favorite because she drew it within minutes of meeting me, and yet she captured my essence so beautifully. Thanks, Juliette! (Perla is the writer behind many a telenovela hit, such as "Dame Chocolate" and others, so it's no wonder Juliette is so good at finding the story right away.)

The title of the book Juliette drew for me is "I wish for...."

These are great, of course, but at the risk of losing good friends whose children where not inclined to be forthcoming, I've had to begun procuring kid's art from more willing, and sometimes more remote, sources.

Here I share seven of my best sources for scoring great children's art. I share them in hopes you'll use them to inspire your child to make a few things, and that you'll also send me a, um, "sample of work" as a token of your appreciation. (I am completely serious.) Here goes:

1. The Global Children's Art Gallery is now accepting submissions. Visit for instructions on how to submit your child's art. 

2.  Artsonia calls itself the largest kid's art museum with over sixteen million pieces.
You can search for art by artist's name or school.

3. Ebay and Etsy are great sources of inspiration and masterpieces! Search for "Art by Children."

4. Your local magnet school for the arts will hold art fairs regularly to raise funds for supplies. 

5. Community colleges with continuing education programs often hold art workshops for kids, especially over the summer. 

6. Your local arts and crafts store will connect you with art tutors in your area.

7. Children's museums and galleries. Here's a link to the association that groups them:

Before I go, here's a book made by the oldest son of my friend and coworker, Alex. Andres Acebal makes beautiful things for his dad with such understanding of the concept and purpose of art as a way to communicate feelings and thoughts that you would never guess he made this book before the age of nine, or that he battles with autism. (I have been craving an Andres original for my collection for quite some time.

Now it's your turn. Have a great piece of children's art you'd like to share? Send me a JPEG to and I'll feature it here in a follow up post. 

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