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Top ten gifts for budding artists

Unleash your child's creative spirit with these inventive art tools for kids.

By Connie Matthiessen

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Art school kid

How to inspire young artists

"Every child is an artist," said Pablo Picasso. (He also said, ""Every act of creation is first an act of destruction" — worth remembering the next time the kitchen wall is covered in Magic Markers.)

Even if you don't expect your child to one day show his or her oeuvre at the Louvre, there are no end of compelling reasons to encourage any and all artistic impulses. Recent research has found that, from kindergarten scribbling to high school self-portraits, the visual arts can play a vital role in developing children's creativity, self-expression, and problem-solving skills.

As a parent, you can nurture your child's innate creativity by exposing her to the work of other artists or encouraging him to paint outside the lines whenever possible. Also essential for your artist-in-residence? Keeping art supplies on hand for whenever inspiration strikes. Here are 10 top gifts that will keep your naturally imaginative kid creating.