Tutorial: Drawing and Painting on your Child’s School Bag, part 1


Okay, settle back, get a cup of coffee prepare to read a story. A story about me and my adventures in painting a school bag for my daughter. This is the bag in the picture above. It’s innocent and unassuming looking, and it comes from a really good preschool my youngest daughter attends. But don’t let the looks of the bag fool you…

… it’s EVIL!!!! EVIL, I tell you.

See, it’s canvas. DARK BLUE canvas. At this school, it’s custom for the parents to decorate their child’s bags. This usually means the Moms do it. However, since I’m a Dad who’s blessed enough to work out of his home as a professional cartoonist, I was assigned to do this task by my lovely wife. I found this out on the first day of school, a Friday. They gave us the bag and said we had the weekend to decorate it. I figured this wouldn’t be a problem. That’s before I found out the bag was EVIL.

And carnivorous.

It thwarted all my normal attempts to decorate it. It ATE the markers I tried, DEVOURED the paint from the cute spray on bottles I bought, and in a few days SHED the cool little foamy hearts and flowers I applied. Obviously I was dealing with a dark, malevolent, superior alien intelligence.

Finally I just covered the thing with my daughter’s name and some swirly, twirly lines, all done in white and shades of pink “puffy paint”. My wife, who’d entrusted me with this project, was extremely non-impressed with my results. My three year old called the results her “Birthday Cake Bag”, and seemed pleased as could be. Bless her heart.

But I, on the other hand, was devastated. It seemed to me that everyone else’s bags were SO much better than mine. They had stuff sewn on, heat transferred, painted, bedazzled… everything. Seriously, there are some talented, “crafty” Moms out there. I was humbled. I found in my internet searches on this subject, that there’s not even a lot of good info out there. “Canvas bag drawing”, “School bag drawing”, “EVIL school bags” … none of those searches seem to generate satisfactory results. So, hopefully, my next few posts will help other parents who find themselves in this same predicament.

Because for the entire Fall semester, I brooded, I schemed, and I planned my revenge….

To be continued…


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