Got Stuff? Make Art With Debbie Ridpath Ohi.

I had the absolute joy of meeting author/illustrator DEBBIE RIDPATH OHI at the American Library Association summer conference in San Francisco last June.  Friendly, engaging, and sooo talented.  She also generously took time from her very busy career to be a guest on this blog.  If you’ve never had the joy of seeing Debbie’s work, here is an opportunity. 

Debbie is known for making art from found objects such as candy wrappers, sticks, buttons, strawberries…You name it, and she will make art from it.

For this tutorial, gather the kids around, break out a handful of almonds, clean paper and some pencils.   Here’s Debbie:

Creative Fun With Found Object Art

by Debbie Ridpath Ohi

 A fun art activity for young readers: doodle with found objects!

This may look like a pile of almonds:


But you never know what may happen once you add a few lines.

All you need is a blank piece of paper, an object, and something to draw with. If you’re working with a messy found object, make sure you put plastic underneath to protect the table.








You don’t need fancy drawing tools.    10-WritingInstruments-600




Here are some examples of found object art that I’ve made:

For more tips, see my Look Again resource (

Debbie Ridpath Ohi – Twitter: @inkyelbows –      
Author/illustrator of WHERE ARE MY BOOKS? (Simon & Schuster), My illustrations also appear in books by Michael Ian Black & Judy Blume as well as the upcoming Ruby Rose books by Rob Sanders (HarperCollins), Mitzi Tulane books by Lauren McLaughlin (Random House). I blog about reading, writing and illustrating children’s books at Inkygirl.

(Darlene here:  I got so inspired by Debbie’s enthusiasm and gift of doodling, I tried some “almond doodles” myself.)

Who knew almonds were so much fun!                                                            2014-12-02 01.56.41

With Author Debbie Ridpath Ohi

With Author/illustrator Debbie Ridpath Ohi


6 thoughts on “Got Stuff? Make Art With Debbie Ridpath Ohi.

  1. What a wonderful way to inspire young artists! In all my years of drawing and doodling, I never thought to use food or any other object as a starting point for creativity. Such a great idea! Thanks for sharing. Let the imagination run wild!

  2. Darlene, Thanks for the nutty idea. I’m going to spend tomorrow with my grandchildren and I just happen to have a bag of almonds in the pantry. Serendipity!

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