Brain Pickings introduces Art Pickings, featuring the most incredible artwork for children’s rooms and beyond.

Cool Mom Picks

Those of you who are also fans of Maria Popova’s Brain Pickings may know that it’s one of our own favorite sites too. We include their list of favorite children’s books on our own annual lists of the best children’s books lists of the year. (How’s that for meta).

For years now, I’ve relied on them for thoughtfully curated reviews of children’s books, and all books really, with a strong focus on illustration and artfulness, plus outstanding writing around the kinds of themes that matter to me especially for my kids — diversity, inclusion, creativity, hard work, kindness, the human existence.

So I was thrilled to learn this weekend that they’ve just launched Art Pickings, offering a collection of high-quality prints from their archive, ranging from public domain artwork to illustrations commissioned for series on site like A Velocity of Being: Illustrated Letters to Children about Why We Read by 121 of the Most Inspiring Humans in Our World.

I’m sad that all 121 of those particular illustrations aren’t available (yet), because Lara Hawthorne’s artwork for a letter by Jacqueline Woodson would be such a hit with parents. But, there are so many other art prints I adore.

Here are just a few favorite prints from Art Pickings new collection that would be amazing for children’s rooms — or. any room, really.

Anais Nin on love, illustrated by Debbie Milman and conceived by Maria Popova

Classification des Couleurs color wheel by French chemist Michel Eugène Chevreul

Nelly Bly’s Packing List illustrated by Wendy MacNaughton and conceived by Maria Popova

Sophie Blackall young reader from A Velocity of Being, Letters to a Young Reader

Oliver Sacks quote on music by Debbie Millman

Susan Sontag on art, by Wendy McNaughton

19th c astronomical drawings by Étienne Léopold Trouvelot

Cindy Derby artwork from Velocity of Being, Letters to a Young Reader

Edith Windsor’s historic call with President Obama about marriage equality. illustrated by Debbie Millman


I particularly love that a portion of profits, and sometimes all the profits, support relevant non-profits including The Women’s Media Center, A Room of Her Own, The Oliver Sacks Foundation, the Arbor DayFoundation, or The New York Public Library.

Just know it’s a rabbit hole, if a delightful one; find a print you love and you’ll end up diving into articles you’ll be bookmarking for day.

Liz Gumbinner