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Managing Emotions Through Art!

To create the stunningly detailed artwork in ‘Raymund and the Fear Monster‘, illustrator Ester de Boer meticulously sketched line after line, dot, etch, dash and swish through the use of fine ink, textured shadings and illuminating yet subtle wisps of colour. To start, let’s take a look at Ester scribbling her favourite drawing in the book…

Video courtesy of Ester de Boer and Megan Higginson

Monsters and Emotions Blow Art Activity

Combining the study of Ester’s techniques as seen in the video above, along with author Megan Higginson‘s emotive text describing fear, courage, resilience, determination and relief, today we are going to explore a task that involves both art and interpersonal development.


Core Curriculum Content Descriptions –

LiteratureResponding to literature: Discuss characters and events in a range of literary texts and share personal responses to these texts, making connections with students’ own experiences (ACELT1582)

Creating literature: Recreate texts imaginatively using drawing, writing, performance and digital forms of communication (ACELT1586)

Visual Art – Use and experiment with different materials, techniques, technologies and processes to make artworks (ACAVAM107)

Health and Physical Education – Communicating and interacting for health and wellbeing: Identify and practise emotional responses that account for own and others’ feelings (ACPPS020)


Age Range –

5 – 8 years (Foundation to Year 2)


Discussion –

Look at the cover of ‘Raymund and the Fear Monster‘. What do you notice about the illustrations? How does this image make you feel? Why? What do you think this story might be about?

What do you think ‘fear’ is? Have you experienced this emotion? What did you do? Do you think there could have been a way to handle your feelings better?

What strategies did Raymund practise to become brave and take on the Fear Monster? Can you think of other ways to calm down when frightened, or bolster your courage in times of need?

Brainstorm all the emotions you can think of or have ever felt. Make a mind map showing these around your own face (or the face of Raymund).

Looking again at the illustrations and the video by illustrator Ester de Boer; what kind of media do you think she used? Why is this effective for the type of look needed, particularly a scene in a rainforest, or a character such as the Fear Monster?


Objectives – 

: To recognise different emotions and think about effective ways to handle them.

: Explore different media, in particular fine line work, to represent a scene that creates an emotion.

: Explore personal connections to the literature through discussion and art.

Goal – 

: To practise some breathing and mindfulness strategies whilst creating the monster blow art piece, as well as utilising techniques in capturing attention to detail with visual art media.


Materials –

White paper

Acrylic paint (assortment of colours)


Fine liner pen

Water (brush to mix)




Directions –

  1. Mix up a small amount of water with a blob of acrylic paint.

2. Pour a splash of the watered-down paint on the white paper. Using your straw, blow the paint in different directions, using both strong and softer blows.

blow paint vid

3. Why not make a few different coloured blow art monsters!! Perhaps assign each one a different emotion.

4. On white paper, draw and cut out some eyes and a mouth for your monster. Remember, the more detail the better!

5. Once the paint has dried, paste your eyes and mouth onto your shape. Now add some fun details like legs, arms, horns, accessories, whatever you like!

6. Cut out your monster. You might like to create a background for it to feature in, such as a forest, treehouse, underwater scene, etc. The fine details will add depth and interest to your picture.

7. Alternatively, keep your monster cut out and place it somewhere that reminds you of your strategies for courage, like on the fridge, in your lunchbox, decorate your workbook, next to your bed, and so on.

Now you won’t be afraid to FACE your FEAR, or any other emotion, for that matter!

Reference: Australian Curriculum


*Megan Higginson has some fabulous teaching resources for ‘Raymund and the Fear Monster‘ on her website, prepared by Ester de Boer. Click here to view.


#monsteractivity #managingemotions #education #literature #visualarts #health

Follow Megan at these links:

Website: www.meganhigginson.com

Facebook @meganhigginsonauthor | Twitter @MeganHigginsonW | Instagram @meganhigginsonauthor | LinkedIn @MeganHigginson

Follow Ester here:

Website: esterdeboerillustration.com/

Facebook @Esterisms | Instagram @estermdeboer


Commit to the statement ‘I will FACE my FEAR’ for a chance to WIN a copy of ‘Raymund and the Fear Monster‘ by Megan Higginson and Ester de Boer.

Click here to enter.

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