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Painted Dreams  

Ti Marie dreams of being an artist. Whenever she gets some time away from watching her little sisters and helping Mama in their market stall, she finds a cement wall or a scrap of waste paper and lets her imagination soar. Using whatever she can find to make a mark—bits of red brick, charcoal, white rocks—Ti Marie makes beautiful art. Mama says there is no money for real paint and brushes but Ti Marie finds a surprising way to make her dreams come true.


Behind the Story

I was inspired by all the Haitian art I saw when I lived in Haiti. There are more artists per capita in Haiti than in any other county in the world. I did some research and found out that many of these artists began painting as apprentices as children. Haitian art often tells stories and it is sometimes dream like. In a country where many people are staving, artists like to paint pictures of fruits that are bigger than humans for example.

You can view more examples of Haitian artwork at Friends of HAS and Macondo.


Illustrator: Catherine Stock

Publisher: HarperCollins/Lothrop, Lee & Shepard

Buy the book: Amazon


Download the Teacher's Guide for this book. [1.3 MB PDF]


Painted Dreams is now available in Haitian Creole! Finally young people who speak that language will be able to make this book their own.


© 2013 Karen Lynn Williams