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The Artist and Me by Shane Peacock and Sophie Casson

Inspiring. Thought-provoking. Storytelling that Sparks Change. 

What better than International Day of Pink to draw attention to a book that speaks of anti-bullying. The Artist and Me is a thought-provoking picture book that tackles the thorny causes and effects of bullying, with honest writing, fiery illustrations, and an uncommon perspective on one of the world's most well known artists, Vincent Van Gogh.

Van Gogh was an eccentric fellow who loved painting pictures that spoke of truth. He was considered a difficult and emotional, and always seemed to have a hard time fitting in. He always remained an outsider because of his eccentric way of seeing the world. 

Living in Arles, France, in the 1880s, he was mocked for being different. Inspired by these events, The Artist And Me is the fictional confession of one of Van Gogh's bullies -- a young boy who adopted the popular attitude of adults around him. This should be a lesson to everyone, a reminder of how much kids absorb from being around adults.

Don't forget that bullies are cowards themselves, as they hide behind other people and shamelessly mock what they cannot understand. Teaching our kids to recognize this atrocious behaviour is key, and The Artist and Me is a powerful tool against anti-bullying that spins the message from "telling kids what to do" to "showing them how wrong it is". 

The Artist and Me is also a triumphant example of perseverance and determination, to not let others determine your destiny. If Vincent Van Gogh took what his bullies said to him to heart, then he would never have accomplished the great feat of being one of the most famous artists in the world. The writing is brilliant and inspiring. 

The author, Shane Peacock has always considered Vincent Van Gogh his hero. He was inspired by his dedication to the craft -- Van Gogh didn't just want to be an artist, he believed in art. He didn't care if his paintings were well received or not. Van Gogh stands out today as a symbol of someone who lived life that wasn't about making money or being famous but about doing what he believed in, no matter what. 

International Day of Pink is celebrated on April 13, 2016. The International Day of Pink is a Canadian anti-bullying event held annually on the second Wednesday of April. It all started when David Shepard and Travis Price saw a student being bullied in their high school in Nova Scotia and supported the student by getting everyone at school to wear pink in support of him. The initiative inspired youth at Jer's Vision who founded the International Day of Pink, an effort to support their peers internationally with resources and ways to make their schools safer. 

    The Artist and Me is published by Chirp, chickaDEE and OWL 

    Blog post by @ShilpaRaikar (Creative and Social Media strategist, decor enthusiast and book lover, who also writes for a branding blog:, as well as a lifestyle blog: T: @SukasaStyle) 

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