beautifully illustrated family trees

for your

children             brothers & sisters            aunts  & uncles

family reunions          anniversaries          weddings          birthdays

& for yourself

since 1996
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Ilene Murray - reviewer
St Louis Genealogical Society Quarterly,
Summer 2002

Always desiring artistic talent, but having little, this small, cleverly drawn book made me wish once again that I could do more than manipulate ready-made computer graphics on a screen.  Although you could just photocopy the fanciful family trees enclosed in these pages and fill in your own family names,the fun is in the design.  Most of the book consists of instructions for creating your own line-art family trees.

The author/artist begins with three theories:

And the basis of the book’s title, CREATIVITREE, “A family tree doesn’t have to actually look like a tree!”

There are some pages explaining how to obtain and draw images, how to measure and design boxes in which to place names, dates, etc.; and suggestions for using archival quality materials to do the finished product.  For the most part, Mr. Matthews encourages “breaking out of the box.”  He gives directions for making family trees in circles, semi-circles, and just about any shape you can think of.  Although he does go into a brief explanation of how to do the research to fill in the boxes, this is not a how-to-do-genealogy book.  Instead, it is a vehicle for the imagination and your sense of whimsy.  If you have always looked at your family tree as a chart of rectangles, Mr. Matthews invites you to think again.  Why not computers?  Or dinosaurs?  Or flowers?  Or castes?  A Christmas tree?  A beehive?  An alligator?  Got the picture?

CREATIVITREE is a joyous little book.  It would make a wonderful tool for an adult to have to share genealogy with children, either at home or in the classroom.  If you have any innate artistic ability, this book will surely inspire you to let your own flights of genealogical fancy take shape on paper.

Tidewater Virginia Families, Vol. 11 #3, Nov/Dec 2002

This is an unusual collection of hand-drawn family trees and pedigree charts from which the individual can select to design one’s own creative taste.  They can be reproduced and enlarged, they may be whimsical, fanciful or straight forward, as individual as one likes.  Each creation may be unique, and representative of the family presented.  They can be customized, framed and presented as family gifts and treasured as keepsakes.

Bluegrass Roots, Vol. 29 #1, Spring 2002

This is an extension/expansion of a former book, PAPER TREES.  The author says he will show ways you can easily create a beautiful, colorful, historic, humorous or individual tree yourself.  The theories upon which this is based:

  1. Genealogy isn’t just dusty books and muddy graveyards, it is a human thing and thus open to color, beauty, fun…
  2. Family trees are about people, your people, and can be very individual as well as open to color, beauty, fun…
  3. This is the one giant leap of creativity…a family tree doesn’t have to look like a tree.

There are 42 pages of illustrations, examples and suggestions for you to use, along with an explanation of each type.  If you are looking for something “different,” you have it here!

Design Ideas for Family Trees

by Tony Matthews

ISBN:  9780806351186


This, and MEMORY TREES, shows how you can create your own unique family tree.  If not an artist, you can use scrapbook materials, such as borders, stickers, stencils and clip-art books/CDs.  There are many ideas illustrated, as well as blank (boxes only) for you to experiment with, assuming that you even need boxes!  Many innovative designs and ideas!


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