Sally Kindberg’s workshop at the Guardian’s Reading for Pleasure conference

hat-of-surpriseBusy and buzzy day at this year’s Guardian Reading for Pleasure conference organised by Margaret Holborn and chaired by Julia Eccleshare.  Talks by successful Beetle Boy author MG Leonard, author/illustrator Emily Gravett and lecturer in literacy and children’s books Prue Godwin. Disappointingly MG Leonard didn’t mention the fantastic cover artwork and illustrations artist Julia Sarda made for Beetle Boy.  Much networking, tea and biscuits in between. Cake came later. Workshops by Artis,  and artist/educator Shelagh McCarthy of the British Library.  My (oversubscribed) workshop Bring A Character To Life was with primary school teachers, librarians, and representatives of charities including Victoria Gray of  Give A Book, all full of inventive energy …

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Participants chose a character at random from my Hat of Surprise and told a story using four frames of words/pictures to show its personality.  These then met the character next to them and off they went on a journey of adventure and discovery.  All this in one hour – after a Powerpoint of images showing characters from different children’s books, some (brief) live drawing and a couple of creative relaxation exercises to get everyone in the mood.  Phew!  And very impressive results from everyone – hooray!

With thanks to Elli Narewska of the Guardian for photos …

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