Back in your wild and perhaps mis-spent youth, did you feel as though you had a dream for your future, what YOU wanted to be when you grew up? But the problem seemed to be that your parents had a very different idea. Well, then, you and Henri Matisse have a lot in common!
Marjorie Blaine Parker has written a new book titled Colorful Dreamer, The Story of Henri Matisse. Illustrated by Holly Berry, young children are introduced to the young Matisse and his family in the gray village in France that was their home. Even though their life in the village seemed dull, Henri saw nothing but magic and color. Reluctantly, perhaps to please his parents, he agrees to go off to Paris to study law. What could he have been thinking!!! Obviously, the law does not agree with Henri, he lands in the hospital, and there begins to paint.
At last, he found something that made him truly, truly happy. Needless to say, he gave up the law, went to art school,and never, never looked back. Of course, that doesn’t mean that his life was always easy, but he always worked hard to provide for his family.
Holly Berry has done an admirable job catching the color and enthusiasm for life that Matisse had and shares that with us. And thank you, Marjorie Parker, for a great story, about a remarkable man, who chose to follow his dreams. It is a story for the ages, and especially for today, that nothing is too hard, if you are willing to work for it.
* As a bonus, check out this great pin I found which is sort of a 3-d, paper Matisse-esque sculpture which could be fun to do with the kids!