Local Business Based on
Kids Artwork is Anything But Childish

By: Nicole Gochmanosky
      
The San Diego Beacon


In addition to learning the fundamentals of art and design, art student Jeffrey Shutt, age 6, will earn a royalty for his artwork "Butterfly" which is part of the 200+ images available for reproduction under the Kids-Did-It! Designs® brand and now availble on checks and address labels.

Photo © 2001 Kids-Did-It! Properties™-


The artwork of four young San Diego art students are moving from their parent’s refrigerators to inside the pocket books of people all over the country, giving people their daily dose of bright colors and inspiration. The illustrations of Elyse Bobczynski, 5, Jeffrey Shutt, 6, Stephen DeVito, 7, and Lauren Van Woy, 9, have been recently reproduced on personal checks and address labels, and are now available through ChecksUnlimited.com.

The four illustrations, titled Frogs, Butterfly, Happy Sun, and Earth, were selected from the Kids-Did-It! Design® art collection maintained by Kids-Did-It! Properties™, a San Diego business that collects, represents, and reproduces student artwork from the art classes of San Diego artist and art teacher Michelle Abrams.

Michelle’s husband, Glenn Abrams, was inspired to start the business when visiting Michelle's studio filled with artwork from 3 to 14-year-old children. "The artwork is fresh, inspirational - very colorful and surprisingly sophisticated," Glenn said.

Michelle, who offers art classes throughout the summer, compares the student artwork to those of the classics, saying the artwork is "worthy of being called fine art in the tradition of Matisse, Van Gogh, Picasso, or Miro."

Steven Brezzo, the former director of the San Diego Museum of Art, tells a fun story about 5-year-old Elyse's artwork. While Glenn and Michelle were working with Brezzo on a Children’s Museum concept, they sent him a framed 16 by 20 inch digital reproduction of Elyse’s "Red Petal" floral watercolor for inspiration. When the watercolor arrived at the museum it was briefly mistaken in the receiving department for a Matisse print!

Checks Unlimited is not the first company to show interest in the Kids-Did-It! Designs® collection. American Greetings, Prentice Hall, Houghton-Mifflin, PAK2000, The Covenant House, and Papel Giftware have all published Kids-Did-It! Designs® artwork on items ranging from books and stationary to household giftware. More than 29 students in the San Diego area have been published by these companies through Kids-Did-It!.

Aside from the thrill and satisfaction of being a published artist at such a young age, the students also earn a royalty for their reproduced work.

"Some students have even framed their first royalty check!" Glenn said.

While this is Stephen’s first publication, Elyse, Jeffrey, and Lauren have been previously published by the companies mentioned above. Lauren, whose Earth illustration was done at the young age of 9, has already seen her artwork reproduced on cards, mugs, and gift bags and has received royalty checks for the publications. She says she plans on saving most of her earnings.

With the Kids-Did-It! Design® collection growing, there are now more than 200 illustrations available for licensed reproduction. "It’s a complete collection with a very broad appeal - and we can easily adapt it for reproduction on a variety of materials, including paper goods, textiles, clothing, household and soft-goods, ceramics, plush toys, giftware - let your imagination go!" Glenn said.

The complete collection can be viewed at www.kidsdidit.com.

The illustrations themselves are proof that children’s artwork is more than something to be slapped on the refrigerator door. Glenn and Michelle Abrams encourage parents to take their child’s artwork off the refrigerator, enlarge it, frame it and hang it throughout the house.



For additional information, please contact

Glenn Abrams:   g a b r a m s @ k i d s d i d i t . c o m   |   +1 (619) 523-5277


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