Wednesday, February 17, 2010


The kids have been drawing and painting well before they were a year old. I've become a huge art lover in the past few years, and since it's a big part of my life, I love to share that with the kids. I've always wanted them to experience the joy of making art, simply for the pure pleasure of the process.

If you've never read Susan Striker's book Young at Art, go out and get it. Read it cover to cover. It radiates with the idea of letting kids come to art on their own, to just step back and let them experiment and explore to their hearts content.

My kids have covered themselves head to toe in paint, drawn over all the walls in our house, painted the fence and garage outside, and created colorful creations on the bathtub walls. They excel at abstract art, as do all toddlers and under 5's. But up until a few weeks ago, I've never seen the either Jared or Alexa attempt to draw something recognizable. Then to my amazement Alexa showed me the picture above. She pointed out how she had drawn eyes, nostrils, a mouth, chin and legs.

We've never asked Jared of Alexa to draw a person or any one specific thing. I abhor coloring books simply because they allow no imagination. I see other kids "drawing" things when we are out, but it's almost always done with "help" from the parent, showing them the "correct" way to draw things. I wanted my kids to always be free to explore and expand thier own ideas, not to copy the ideas of others.

So, going from never, ever drawing anything that resembled a person, to showing me details like lips in the picture below, took me by surprise. They are definitely the crude drawings of a three year old, but I was so proud of her. Jared also likes to draw. In one of the pictures below, you can see a set of what look like triangles. He informed me those were sharks teeth.

No comments: