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Voglio Una Mela Blu (V1MB) , Sybille Tezzele Kramer

Mischiamiti (Series)

YEAR: 2016

COUNTRY: Online

Cateogry icon

Title of the work

Mischiamiti (Series)

Country of the First Edition

Country/countries of popularity

Worldwide

Original Language

Italian

First Edition Date

2016

First Edition Details

Kramer, Sybille T.; Voglio Una Mela Blu; Mischiamiti. (printing materials) sybilletezzelekramerartblog.wordpress.com, vogliounamelablu.it; 2016.

First Release Dates:

  • “Mischiamiti. Il libro - gioco mitologico” (book-game) - December 3, 2016.

  • “Raccolta di filastrocche per Mischiamiti - il libro-gioco mitologico” (collection of nursery rhymes) – December 5, 2016.

  • “Le carte dei Mostri Mitologici” (mythological monsters cards) – December 8, 2016.

Official Website

Blog “Voglio Una Mela Blu” (accessed: August 20, 2018);

my art diary 2-Sybille’s Art Blog” (accessed: August 20, 2018.

Available Onllne

All parts of “Mischiamiti” project are available online and they can be download for free.

PDF files with printing materials from the “Mischiamiti” series (files with Creative Commons (CC) license, accessed: August 20, 2018):

Genre

Humor
Instructional and educational work
Myths
Nursery rhymes
Picture puzzles
Puzzles and games

Target Audience

Crossover (All ages)

Cover

Missing cover

We are still trying to obtain permission for posting the original cover.


Author of the Entry:

Dorota Bazylczyk, University of Warsaw, dorota.bazylczyk@student.uw.edu.pl

Peer-reviewer of the Entry:

Elżbieta Olechowska, University of Warsaw, elzbieta.olechowska@gmail.com 

Lisa Maurice, Bar Ilan University, mauril68@gmail.com

Avatar, courtesy of V1MB - son of the blogger first drew the blue apple and then he gave it to her to create the blog icon (Information sent by V1MB).

Voglio Una Mela Blu (V1MB) , b. 1975
(Artist)

The real name is known to Dorota Bazylczyk (University of Warsaw) but V1MB prefers to remain anonymous.


“Ever since 1975, when she was a small girl, Vogliounamelablue looks at the world through her blue eyes; from 1975. And not much later, she realizes what interests her the most: people and their stories. And so, starting with a classical education, she attempts later to weave this thing into a profession that allows her to combine it also with a family – psychiatry. Today, thanks to Heaven, she has a job, a husband, and two kids. In her home studio she has a six-door wardrobe filled not with clothes but with paints, brushes, decorated cards, old rags, ribbons, scissors, glue, solvents and, in short, her blue apple.*"


The blog's title was based on the title of the book Voglio una mela blu, written by Ibi Lepscky, illustrated by Luciana Roselli, published in 1973 by Einaudi (volume 24 in the TANTIBAMBINI series, a collection directed by Bruno Munari). Vogliounamelablu explains that the book was “not her favourite volume of TANTIBAMBINI but, in a sense, an inspiration.**”


Facebook fanpage (accessed: July 6, 2018).


Bio prepared by Dorota Bazylczyk, University of Warsaw, dorota.bazylczyk@student.uw.edu.pl


* Biography sent by V1MB.

** The official biography of V1MBl (accessed: July 6, 2018).

Questionnaire

1. What drew you to work with Classical Antiquity?

First I just received a proposal from my friend Sybille. Then I began to fantasize. I talked about it with my family and suddenly a considerable amount of images, references, stories and evocations that had remained in my and my children’s memory and imagination emerged. I thought to myself - why not create something of our own, to give a new shape to this material?


2. Do you have a background in classical education (Latin at school or classes at the University?)

Yes, before the University I attended a classical high school for 5 years, where I studied the languages and cultures of Rome and ancient Greece. Then I studied Latin and ancient Greek, translating historical and rhetorical texts and reading passages from the Iliad and the Aeneid (appreciating the pace!).


3. Why do you think classical/ancient myth and literature continue to resonate with young audiences?

I think they are still fascinating for young people because they constitute an enormous cultural heritage that tells about world full of fantasy, adventures and incredible stories. Narrated stories are often dramatic and passionate, there are also some scary figures and heroes with whom young people identify willingly, following values sometimes very far from our recent tradition.

In Italy we live in direct contact with reflections of these cultures, in architecture and language, in the names of people; it is enough to look around, or go find the etymology of words to see everywhere traces of ancient Greek and Roman cultures. Children naturally curious, love this kind of "treasure hunt"!


4. What is the main idea of your project Mischiamiti?

The main idea of the project Mischiamiti was to create materials to play and learn with a mythological theme that could be accessible to audiences of different age groups. The game-book is suitable also for young children of preschool age because it can be coloured and you can play with it, mixing different patterns. For children who have just learned how to read, it’s entertaining to read and see how the names of "mythological monsters" can change and mix. On the other hand, rhymes are challenging to older kids because they contain rare words and you can play mixing verses; they can be also amusing for adults who catch ironic references to myths and appreciate the poetic allusions. It was so much fun to offer to the readers of our blog (and of course to our friends and family) the game which consist of composing rhymes based on a regular scheme, so they could be mixed without any problems; in this sense the book is "collaborative” because among the known rhymes there are some composed by our readers! All rhymes were composed in the “participatory” phase - then they were collected in a small publication. In order to appreciate Sybille’s designs we also created two sets of cards, which are easily downloaded, printed and used. By printing two copies of selected cards you can play a memory game - one of the first card games that could be offered to children. To practice reading and writing you can use one copy of cards with names and one copy of cards with small biographical stories of each (unnamed) "mythological monster": after reading each story you can guess which monster was described and match the cards, and also write the name of "mythological monster" to which it refers. 

With this version my children have also played in a group of friends! One child read the anonymous biography and the others (watching all the picture cards) had to guess the corresponding drawing: the first child that touched the right card, won it; the overall victory belonged to the child who got the largest number of cards. We also thought about a version of cards to be printed front / back in order to create - for the older kids - a "collection" of characters from Greek and Roman mythology reproduced on one side and described on the other.


5. Why did you decide to work with mythological creatures? (And why did you choose these specific figures?)

The initial suggestion to create the cards portraying mythological figures came from Sybille, October 1, 2016. (We live in two different cities which are far away from each other and we work together chatting on the internet, so it’s easy for me to reconstruct the whole story of this project, thank goodness!). The idea met with huge enthusiasm from my family: we chose these mythological figures because those are the ones that have been suggested by my children (age: 6 and 10), based on their passions and knowledge. My children know different stories about Greek myths because they have read or seen books on this subject and because I gave them as a present the first version of cards with mythological monsters (but those cards were very "scary" for them so they wanted to throw them away). We were all curious about how Sybille would be able to draw these characters in a recognizable way, but "brighter" and funnier. Reproduced below is the list written by my eldest son, after the family brain-storming, which became a basis for Sybille to start drawing. Names were then grouped into categories, and therefore better suited to the specific format of a game-book.

 Macintosh HD:Users:Kolokea:Desktop:Zrzut ekranu 2017-02-17 o 10.19.07.png


6. What challenges did you face in representing/describing these figures/characters/ myths?

As for the representation of characters, I have worked on the drawing up some rhymes and writing short biographies. As a reference for narrative texts I used the information I found on the respective pages (in Italian and English) of Wikipedia, producing a synthesis and trying to make the text consistent and homogeneous. Furthermore, I often address myself directly to the reader - involving the reader in the observation of the proper illustrations, I invite the reader to make judgments and to go deeper into the details of the myths, which are only mentioned in the biographies.

In the case of rhymes, on the other hand, I worked more freely and I had a lot of fun playing with the serious and established image of the myths, transmitted from classics and how they came to me, and treating them a bit differently. For example in writing the rhyme about the poor phoenix, I've imagined that the bird was distressed, because there was too much dust rising from the ashes, and I laughed a lot.

I had major difficulty with the names of the characters which are composed of difficult sounds - it was not easy to build perfect rhymes within the rigid grammatical structure imposed by this type of rhymes!


7. Why did you decide to use game format - book game, cards?

We have just released a multilingual card games exploring the characters of Halloween tradition. Sybille’s proposal to create mythological theme cards came from the desire to produce more comprehensive materials, sacrificing "internationality", but allowing them to integrate the levels of the game and the images with the Italian tradition of writing rhymes for kids (my husband, who wanted to contribute by writing a lot of rhymes, was clearly inspired by the famous Italian author - Gianni Rodari). Perhaps this has been the most innovative part of the project, from my point of view: the book format and the idea of "modular" rhymes was born after a search of similar experiments already produced, which then were adapted and customized to our specific needs.

(I wrote about it here!)

Sybille works with innovative teaching methods and I have a great fascination and interest in illustrations and paper products applied to literature and games for children and teenagers. Both of us know - from our respective expertise – that the multimodal stimulation is the one that leaves a mark in the memory and most easily gets people interested, because it engages and connects more senses and more types of intelligence.

All the material lends itself to reading aloud; drawings in black and white can be coloured as desired; cards can be handled, counted, combined, written. Our proposition can create motivation to study the themes used in greater depth thanks to the ludic format but also to the added narrative aspects.


8. Are you planning any further forays into classical material?

Sybille is a volcano of ideas and proposals carried out independently or in various collaborations. I, in view of my studies, am particularly fond of the classical tradition, so I’m absolutely open to new projects in this sense. However, for now we are still exploring further possibilities for the Mischiamiti project, in particular and in terms of innovation, we are considering a digital version, which makes the game-book immediately usable even for those who cannot or are not able to print and "mount" the paper version. We are also looking for volunteer translators to offer small samples of the cards in other languages (more widely known than Italian!).


Prepared by Dorota Bazylczyk, University of Warsaw, dorota.bazylczyk@student.uw.edu.pl


Avatar, courtesy of Sybille Tezzele Kramer. She designed the avatar on her own (Information sent by Sybille T. Kramer).

Sybille Tezzele Kramer , b. 1974

“Since early childhood, I liked to draw, fantasize, imagine, invent and tell stories using both, words and images. After few years of work as an employee at the office of municipal taxes, I was able again to put these skills at the center of my days bringing up my two sons (*1996, *1999) and accompanying them on their path of learning by homeschooling them. After this beautiful experience I decided to focus on work that would provide me with the opportunity to continue on this path. Today, I work as a freelance professional designing, illustrating, creating, telling stories and teaching.*"


Official website (accessed: June 28, 2018).


Bio prepared by Dorota Bazylczyk, University of Warsaw, dorota.bazylczyk@student.uw.edu.pl


* Biography sent by Sybille Tezzele Kramer.

Questionnaire

1. What drew you to work with Classical Antiquity?

The idea was born chatting with my friend V1MB. Apart from the fact that the mythological figures always particularly fascinated me... I immediately liked the idea of drawing them for an educational game project with the intention of piquing interest of children and making them want to learn and discover stories that are all around us...


2. Do you have a background in classical education (Latin at school or classes at the University?)

No, I just picked up these ideas during the homeschooling lessons with my kids, then self-taught.


3. Why do you think classical/ancient myth and literature continue to resonate with young audiences?

Because these are really fascinating stories, fantastic but also always displaying many references to reality. Just think of the different characters and personalities - their strengths and weaknesses are very "human"…


4. What is the main idea of your project "Mischiamiti"?

The designs are really amusing and nice because they are easily accessible also for the smaller ones.


5. Why did you decide to work with mythological creatures? (And why did you choose these specific figures?)

I also liked the idea of creating something that will not only serve the game, entertainment, or imagination, but may also be useful for learning as a first introduction to the world of Greek and Roman mythology and for having later a base for the study of ancient history.


6. What challenges did you face in representing/describing these figures/characters/ myths?

Before I started drawing the figures, I read several online descriptions and then I gave my interpretation of them. The biggest challenge was to be able to represent the figures in such manner that they would be consistent with the system of divisions of the body into three parts, to precisely apply the idea of mix & match ... Therefore it was necessary to find a way to draw all the figures standing on two legs, hands or the other two legs in the middle and at the top of his head. For example, I had to draw the Basilisk sufficiently “fattened”, otherwise I would not be able to meet the margin requirements of the mix & match system ... It was challenging but also fun!


7. Are you planning any further forays into classical material?

I am confident that at the right time, we will have the right ideas, without stress and without forcing ourselves.


Prepared by Dorota Bazylczyk, University of Warsaw, dorota.bazylczyk@student.uw.edu.pl


Summary

“Mischiamiti” (series):

  • “Mischiamiti. Il libro-gioco mitologico” (book-game), 

  • “Raccolta di filastrocche” per “Mischiamiti - il libro-gioco mitologico” (collection of nursery rhymes), 

  • “Le carte dei Mostri Mitologici” dal progetto a tema mitologico “Mischiamiti” (mythological monsters cards).


“Mischiamiti” series contains interactive printing materials (such as “mix and match” game and cards) and nursery rhymes (“filastrocche”) for children, dedicated to selected mythological creatures and hybrids. The whole series was invented and realized by two Italian bloggers and it became a participatory project, as the authors used in the materials nursery rhymes written by their readers for this specific occasion*. The idea of creating “Mischiamiti” was based primarily on a joint creation of “play and learn” material for kids, which can become both fun and learning for them. 

All parts of the “Mischiamiti” project are placed by the authors on their blog sites - everyone can download them and print them for free. On the authors’ websites the readers can afind the instructions on how to print and fold all the interactive games. The “Michiamiti” series can be directed at both children and adults. Most of the illustrations placed in the materials are black and white, mainly to encourage children to color them on their own (what seems very important for the youngest ones, who can’t read or cut yet). The whole set is very original and it can be a great introduction to the world of Greek and Roman mythology.


* Read more here (accessed: August 20, 2018).

Analysis

The “Mischiamiti” project is devoted to mythological creatures and hybrids. The project is an interesting example of the reception of antiquity mainly in terms of its modern form. The printable format of “Mischiamiti” parts, encourage young people to spend more time with the mythical contents - to print, cut, fold and colour all the paper materials on their own. The combination of modern illustrations (where we see for example a hippogriff on a skateboard), mixed with short Italian nursery rhymes (“filastrocche”) makes the project both international as well as continuing Italian traditions. The form of easy access online makes the project approachable for people living all over the world and attractive for people at every age (the only obstacle here may be the lack of the English translations*). “Mischiamiti” series can interest not only children, who want to play with mythical monsters, but also adults, who want to introduce their children to the world of Greek and Roman mythology using fun.


* There are no editions in other languages yet but the authors encourage all the volunteers to prepare translations of the “Mischiamiti” project into other languages.


Further Reading

Voglio Una Mela Blu’s Facebook Fanpage (accessed: August 20, 2018).

Sybille Tezzele Kramer’s website (coming soon).

Addenda


ll graphics were designed by the Authors. Courtesy of the Authors.

Copyrights

All the materials made by Voglio Una Mela Blu and Sybille Tezzele Kramer are covered with the Creative Commons (CC BY-NC-SA) license [Attribution- NonCommercial- ShareAlike].

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Leaf pattern
Leaf pattern

Title of the work

Mischiamiti (Series)

Country of the First Edition

Country/countries of popularity

Worldwide

Original Language

Italian

First Edition Date

2016

First Edition Details

Kramer, Sybille T.; Voglio Una Mela Blu; Mischiamiti. (printing materials) sybilletezzelekramerartblog.wordpress.com, vogliounamelablu.it; 2016.

First Release Dates:

  • “Mischiamiti. Il libro - gioco mitologico” (book-game) - December 3, 2016.

  • “Raccolta di filastrocche per Mischiamiti - il libro-gioco mitologico” (collection of nursery rhymes) – December 5, 2016.

  • “Le carte dei Mostri Mitologici” (mythological monsters cards) – December 8, 2016.

Official Website

Blog “Voglio Una Mela Blu” (accessed: August 20, 2018);

my art diary 2-Sybille’s Art Blog” (accessed: August 20, 2018.

Available Onllne

All parts of “Mischiamiti” project are available online and they can be download for free.

PDF files with printing materials from the “Mischiamiti” series (files with Creative Commons (CC) license, accessed: August 20, 2018):

Genre

Humor
Instructional and educational work
Myths
Nursery rhymes
Picture puzzles
Puzzles and games

Target Audience

Crossover (All ages)

Cover

Missing cover

We are still trying to obtain permission for posting the original cover.


Author of the Entry:

Dorota Bazylczyk, University of Warsaw, dorota.bazylczyk@student.uw.edu.pl

Peer-reviewer of the Entry:

Elżbieta Olechowska, University of Warsaw, elzbieta.olechowska@gmail.com 

Lisa Maurice, Bar Ilan University, mauril68@gmail.com

Avatar, courtesy of V1MB - son of the blogger first drew the blue apple and then he gave it to her to create the blog icon (Information sent by V1MB).

Voglio Una Mela Blu (V1MB) (Artist)

The real name is known to Dorota Bazylczyk (University of Warsaw) but V1MB prefers to remain anonymous.


“Ever since 1975, when she was a small girl, Vogliounamelablue looks at the world through her blue eyes; from 1975. And not much later, she realizes what interests her the most: people and their stories. And so, starting with a classical education, she attempts later to weave this thing into a profession that allows her to combine it also with a family – psychiatry. Today, thanks to Heaven, she has a job, a husband, and two kids. In her home studio she has a six-door wardrobe filled not with clothes but with paints, brushes, decorated cards, old rags, ribbons, scissors, glue, solvents and, in short, her blue apple.*"


The blog's title was based on the title of the book Voglio una mela blu, written by Ibi Lepscky, illustrated by Luciana Roselli, published in 1973 by Einaudi (volume 24 in the TANTIBAMBINI series, a collection directed by Bruno Munari). Vogliounamelablu explains that the book was “not her favourite volume of TANTIBAMBINI but, in a sense, an inspiration.**”


Facebook fanpage (accessed: July 6, 2018).


Bio prepared by Dorota Bazylczyk, University of Warsaw, dorota.bazylczyk@student.uw.edu.pl


* Biography sent by V1MB.

** The official biography of V1MBl (accessed: July 6, 2018).


Avatar, courtesy of Sybille Tezzele Kramer. She designed the avatar on her own (Information sent by Sybille T. Kramer).

Sybille Tezzele Kramer

“Since early childhood, I liked to draw, fantasize, imagine, invent and tell stories using both, words and images. After few years of work as an employee at the office of municipal taxes, I was able again to put these skills at the center of my days bringing up my two sons (*1996, *1999) and accompanying them on their path of learning by homeschooling them. After this beautiful experience I decided to focus on work that would provide me with the opportunity to continue on this path. Today, I work as a freelance professional designing, illustrating, creating, telling stories and teaching.*"


Official website (accessed: June 28, 2018).


Bio prepared by Dorota Bazylczyk, University of Warsaw, dorota.bazylczyk@student.uw.edu.pl


* Biography sent by Sybille Tezzele Kramer.


Summary

“Mischiamiti” (series):

  • “Mischiamiti. Il libro-gioco mitologico” (book-game), 

  • “Raccolta di filastrocche” per “Mischiamiti - il libro-gioco mitologico” (collection of nursery rhymes), 

  • “Le carte dei Mostri Mitologici” dal progetto a tema mitologico “Mischiamiti” (mythological monsters cards).


“Mischiamiti” series contains interactive printing materials (such as “mix and match” game and cards) and nursery rhymes (“filastrocche”) for children, dedicated to selected mythological creatures and hybrids. The whole series was invented and realized by two Italian bloggers and it became a participatory project, as the authors used in the materials nursery rhymes written by their readers for this specific occasion*. The idea of creating “Mischiamiti” was based primarily on a joint creation of “play and learn” material for kids, which can become both fun and learning for them. 

All parts of the “Mischiamiti” project are placed by the authors on their blog sites - everyone can download them and print them for free. On the authors’ websites the readers can afind the instructions on how to print and fold all the interactive games. The “Michiamiti” series can be directed at both children and adults. Most of the illustrations placed in the materials are black and white, mainly to encourage children to color them on their own (what seems very important for the youngest ones, who can’t read or cut yet). The whole set is very original and it can be a great introduction to the world of Greek and Roman mythology.


* Read more here (accessed: August 20, 2018).

Analysis

The “Mischiamiti” project is devoted to mythological creatures and hybrids. The project is an interesting example of the reception of antiquity mainly in terms of its modern form. The printable format of “Mischiamiti” parts, encourage young people to spend more time with the mythical contents - to print, cut, fold and colour all the paper materials on their own. The combination of modern illustrations (where we see for example a hippogriff on a skateboard), mixed with short Italian nursery rhymes (“filastrocche”) makes the project both international as well as continuing Italian traditions. The form of easy access online makes the project approachable for people living all over the world and attractive for people at every age (the only obstacle here may be the lack of the English translations*). “Mischiamiti” series can interest not only children, who want to play with mythical monsters, but also adults, who want to introduce their children to the world of Greek and Roman mythology using fun.


* There are no editions in other languages yet but the authors encourage all the volunteers to prepare translations of the “Mischiamiti” project into other languages.


Further Reading

Voglio Una Mela Blu’s Facebook Fanpage (accessed: August 20, 2018).

Sybille Tezzele Kramer’s website (coming soon).

Addenda


ll graphics were designed by the Authors. Courtesy of the Authors.

Copyrights

All the materials made by Voglio Una Mela Blu and Sybille Tezzele Kramer are covered with the Creative Commons (CC BY-NC-SA) license [Attribution- NonCommercial- ShareAlike].

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