Were you the kid who got lost in your paint, glue, and other art materials? I mean it literally. Maybe you know a child who sees her own body as an extension of her paper or canvas or sculpture. While her peers are relatively neat and disciplined about their creative work, this child jumps right into the creative process in such an intuitive manner that she seems to lose the boundaries of her creation.
I’ve seen just about all methods of making art. One is not “better” than the other, though there seems to be a common characteristic among most of the miniature mess machines (and I mean that affectionately). Kids that “jump right into” the work, all seem to have a very strong sense of design. They also seem to be less interested in figurative representations, and more interested in intuitively dividing space with expressive color, line, pattern, and or texture. Most are pretty independent and let any adult in the room know that their particular process is necessary! This immersion method, if you will, has nothing to do with impulsivity or lack of attention span, rather it is more about spontaneity and self-satisfaction in building a few strong separate elements, not necessarily with the “finish” of the work in mind, though there is almost always a finished piece.
These assertions I have just made about this kind of artistic process are by no means scientific. They are just observations gleaned from watching children, create (my own included). There are many different styles of visual art and there are just as many ways to go about learning to make it. Therefore, if you know a child who needs a bath after an art project, celebrate her passion. This child is little by little, building a joyfully solid artistic foundation by taking the process in on her own terms and essentially teaching herself. A wonderful learning style.
I would like to thank Audrey. She is an intuitive creator, and the artist who made the beautiful paintings above;her hand as well as the painting directly under her hand. When she has finished the canvas painting, I hope that Audrey will allow me to publish a complete image of that piece as well:)
- Rollo May’s “The Nature of Creativity,” Part 3 (janestreetclayworks.wordpress.com)
- Regina of Chalk in My Pocket on encouraging creativity (artfulparent.typepad.com)