Sky Color (Creatrilogy)

by Peter H Reynolds (Author) Peter H Reynolds (Illustrator)

Reading Level: 2nd − 3rd Grade
Series: Creatrilogy

The sky's no limit as the author-illustrator of The Dot and Ish winds up his Creatrilogy with a whimsical tale about seeing the world a new way.

Marisol loves to paint. So when her teacher asks her to help make a mural for the school library, she can't wait to begin! But how can Marisol make a sky without blue paint? After gazing out the bus window and watching from her porch as day turns into night, she closes her eyes and starts to dream. . . .

From the award-winning Peter H. Reynolds comes a gentle, playful reminder that if we keep our hearts open and look beyond the expected, creative inspiration will come.

Find books about:

More books in the series - See All


Starred Review
Besides encouraging children to paint what they actually see rather than repeating the visual conventions they've learned, this original offering frames an apparent problem as a challenge with a simple solution. Rounding out the picture book series that began with THE DOT (2003), this fresh, whimsical picture book encourages the artist and the creative thinker in every child.

Kirkus Reviews

Fans of Reynolds will enjoy the succinct language enhanced by illustrations in pen, ink, watercolor, gouache and tea. Share this feel-good title with those who love art and those who can appreciate the confidence-building triumph of solving a problem on one's own--creatively.

Publishers Weekly

Reynolds provides another glimpse into artistic inspiration and self-expression in this small-format companion to The Dot and Ish. An "artist through and through," Marisol has "her very own art gallery" on her fridge and happily shares her artwork with others. After offering to paint the sky in the mural her class is creating, she is dismayed to discover that the paint box contains no blue paint. Marisol ponders the problem as brilliant oranges, yellows, and pinks fill the sky at sunset, and she later dreams of drifting "though a sky swirling with colors." Marisol's classmates gaze in awe at the similarly radiant sky she paints on the mural in a final wordless spread. Reynolds's characteristically wispy and loose mixed-media art makes judicious use of color in a way that accentuates Marisol's creativity (Marisol's artwork and the classroom paints are the only splashes of color in the book's otherwise muted palette until the sky at sunset ignites Marisol's imagination). Once again, Reynolds's message is to think outside the box, and Marisol's efforts should encourage readers to do just that. Ages 5-up. Agent: Holly McGhee, Pippin Properties. (Aug.)

Copyright 2012 Publishers Weekly, LLC Used with permission.

School Library Journal

PreS-Gr 2--Marisol is an enthusiastic artist who doesn't hesitate to share her creations "with the world"-on the refrigerator, through the mail, even on posters. So when the class prepares to paint a mural for the library, she is right there shouting, "I'll paint the sky!" But she is flummoxed when she can't find blue paint. "How am I going to make the sky without blue paint?" The problem gnaws at her until she watches a sunset. That night she dreams she is flying "through a sky swirling with colors," and next day, she mixes paints into "an all-together new [sky] color." Reynolds's familiar fluid drawings, executed in watercolor, ink, and tea, reveal a young girl filled with personality, squiggly hair flying, clothes adorned with contrasting patterns. The burst of color on the front endpaper is the only hint of the delight in store since the artwork to follow is almost devoid of color except for Marisol's creations. Only when readers get to the final spread that reveals the mural with Marisol's dazzling sky as backdrop for the multicolored fish leaping from the water below are they treated to a surprising display of the girl's creativity. This story, along with Reynolds's The Dot (2003) and Ish (2004, both Candlewick), carries the important message that there is an artist inside everyone and that sometimes finding that creative spark means doing the unexpected. In these days of filling in circles on tests, it's an important message to share with youngsters.--Marianne Saccardi, formerly at Norwalk Community College, CT

Copyright 2012 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

Review quotes

Once again Reynolds has fashioned a gratifying tale for the artist within us. His hand-lettered text and illustrations rendered in pen, ink, watercolor, gouache, and tea create a unique picture book...This is truly a picture book that should be shared with audiences of all ages.

—Library Media Connection 

Like its predecessors, Sky Color is all warmhearted, multihued sweetness.
—New York Times online

Reynolds is a pro at creating books about art, and each one feels fresh and new. Each captures an artist's sense of inspiration. And each one makes us want to pick up a brush, too.
—Young Children Magazine

Peter H Reynolds
Peter H. Reynolds is a New York Times best-selling illustrator who has created many acclaimed books for children. In addition to his Creatrilogy -- The Dot, Ish, and now Sky Color -- he is the author-illustrator of Rose's Garden, The North Star, and So Few of Me and the illustrator of Megan McDonald's Judy Moody and Stink series. Born in Canada, Peter H. Reynolds now lives in Dedham, Massachusetts.
Lexile Measure
Guided Reading Level
Publication date
August 20, 2012
Parents Choice Awards (Fall) (2008-Up)
Silver Medal Winner 2012 - 2012
Golden Sower Award
Nominee 2015 - 2015
Volunteer State Book Awards
Nominee 2015 - 2016

Subscribe to our delicious e-newsletter!