The Kennedy Center and Mo Willems have created a series of YouTube videos to inspire young book lovers. Check out the YouTube channel Lunch Doodles with Mo Willems. I’ve only watched the first one (see above) so far, and it was a lot of fun.
Willems starts out by encouraging his young viewers in joining him to create a doodle. As he points out, there is no wrong way to doodle. He suggested the theme of “things with lots of legs” and encouraged viewers to share their work with him.
Then he answered questions that they had sent in to his publisher. In later videos the questions come directly from young readers but for the first video he had to work with questions he had already been sent.
This video also took visitors on a mini tour of his home studio and the many document drawers, each devoted to a single book. He went through some of the art work for his first title – Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus. It was interesting to see how alike the early pigeon was to the Pigeon his readers know and love. But he also shared illustrations where the dummied piece was significantly different from the published piece.
Throughout, he would make comments like “I don’t know what I was thinking here but I thought these colors would work and they were awful.” Note: I’m paraphrasing from memory but I really liked that he explained to his viewers how his idea for the piece changed with feedback.
He then ended the video showing everyone how to draw Pigeon. As Willems explained, unlike a doodle, there is a right way to draw something and a wrong way. It is worth noting that he drew upside down so that it was right side up for the viewer. His created-upside-down Pigeon looked much more like Pigeon than my right side up Pigeon. You can see my drawing and my doodle on my Facebook author page.
If you need some fun inspiration, tune in and spend some time doodling with the astonishing Mo Willems.