"Good art is not what it looks like, but what it does to us." ~ Roy Adzak
Nearly a year ago, I wrote a little about my process of finger painting with my Sugar. Since that day, we have been blissfully happy art partners. In fact, Hubby built us an Easel last summer, and ever since, the art has been flowing in the house of Living and Loving. I fully intended on share more of the 3000 photos I took of her painting at her easel, but I have neglected to get them all edited. Yes....I know! Shame on ME!
Over our Spring Break, I tried to have a few activities planned to keep us from
"We work not only to produce but to give value to time." ~ Eugene Delacroix
It is always a treat for me to see the excitement in Sugar Bear's eyes when I say, "Hey Sugar, you wanna try something new?" She lights up, and immediately starts asking all sorts of questions, trying to guess what it might be. I have yet to disappoint her. That is a beautiful thing. Even the most simple little things are amazing to a child. Practically EVERYTHING is new. Until that day, she had never seen Marble Painting, so to her....it was a thrill.
There are no seven wonders of the world in the eyes of a child. There are seven million. ~Walt Streightiff
"We are in the business of making the kids feel good about themselves and reinforcing self-confidence. Sometimes that little positive reinforcement is enough to change a kid, or at least guide them in a direction towards creating more and more art." ~ Susan on Long Island
Sugar Bear loves to create new things, and proudly shares her ART with anyone she can find. I love to hear her explain the process she took to make her masterpiece. Hearing her interpretation of the event can be a learning experience for me. Sometimes, I walk away thinking, "Well, that wasn't all that great.", only to hear her telling Hubby about it later, and realize how much she appreciated it.
In this particular case, she found it a little frustrating to get the paint on her hands while retrieving the marble from the paint. I personally found that interesting, because she loves to finger paint. However, I find that my girl, can be somewhat anal about things, and since we were not using our hands as the tool in which to put the paint on the paper, the paint ought not be on our hands. To remedy her concern, I just brought a wet washcloth over for her to wipe her hands on after retrieving the marble. This worked for her.
There were many lessons to be learned in this form of art. Coordinating her muscles in her hands and arms to rock, roll, shake, and tilt the box without losing control and flinging the marbles across the room.
She spent a great deal of time trying to master keeping the marbles from simply rolling down the edge of the box without crossing the paper. It was intriguing watching her learn from the experience, and applying her newly found knowledge.
"Fill a space in a beautiful way" ~ Georgia O'Keeffe
To keep it simple I only set out Yellow, Fushia, and Blue paint. On her first painting, she proclaimed it complete as you see it above. She has yet to master the tilting, so the colors hadn't crossed each other too many times. They basically remained un-mixed.
Her next few paintings were much more actively "shaken", so we got the opportunity to discuss what happens when you mix colors. We got some Green, Orange, and Purple effects. It was delightful.
“The most effective kind of education is that a child should play amongst lovely things.” ~ Plato
Towards the end, it began to matter less that she got paint on her hands. I find that once she is fully engaged in the process, the little details seem not bother her as much.
"It took me four years to paint like Raphael, but a lifetime to paint like a
child." ~ Pablo Picasso
Of course the wash cloth was never far, so she took full use of it from time to time.
Sometimes the project veers off in a different direction, and I strive to remain open to this. Sugar Bear began to get intrigued by the process of coating the marbles with paint, and then washing them off with the wash cloth. I had to literally sit on the "cheap and thrifty" part of my being that wanted to stop my girl from WASTING the paint. Over and over in my head, I was repeating, "It's the Process.....not the product.....It's the process...not the product!" The paint was NOT wasted....it was just used in a different way.
In case you are wondering, yes, I did take like 1000 photos of her throughout this activity, and yet, I was completely there and in the moment with her. Our conversation was lighthearted, yet purposeful. At one point, I asked if I could give it a try, but she was reluctant to share her painting box. Next time, I'll make sure I have one for me as well. She let me play for about 2.5 seconds, but couldn't get past the thought that I was painting her picture for her. If I had my own box and marbles, I feel she would have been excited to see what Mama's painting would look like.
In the end, we both declared it to be the "bestest thing we did all day!", and we look forward to trying it again soon!
"A painting is never finished-it simply stops in interesting places." ~Paul Gardner