Monday, November 3, 2008

A Little Afternoon Painting

I am in the process of doing some self-evaluation and wanting to be a little bit more free with art. I grew up in such a controlled atmosphere where everything was always perfect. We never really were allowed to get really messy. Don't misunderstand my parents are wonderful and spent tons of time with my sister and myself but messy projects were never a part of our childhood. I am now, shall we just say, a little uptight about cleanliness and order and it's something I am really working on. I want our house to feel more like a home and not like a movie set. That means having "things" out and available for the kids to play with. Most of their toys are up in their rooms and out of sight. I want to bring a few special things out for the kids in the main living area of our home to encourage more play. Especially art materials. I have been busy reading Amanda Blake Soule's book "The Creative Family" and I love so many of her ideas. So I am picking and choosing some of my favorites and trying to bring them into our home.

I love doing art projects with my kids, but I feel like I haven't been doing them often enough. Art shouldn't be for special occasions, but rather when they want to be creative. I know how good it makes me feel when I have just created something and I want them to experience that as often as they wish. Therefore, this past weekend I cleaned out on of our big wooden cabinets and made it into a Kid's Art Center and filled it with all the things that we already had. Papers, colored pencils, markers, baskets of crayons, paint brushes, scissors, glues, yarns, scraps of fabrics and felt, beads, etc. Now I want to keep adding to our collection and fill it with all kinds of interesting things for the kids to use. Hopefully this will inspire many great works of art.

This afternoon we got out the watercolors and had so much fun painting together. We started off by making pretty fall paintings, but it quickly turned into a lesson in mixing colors and seeing how all the colors mixed together. Elliott and Abigail had so much fun and I did too. But more than anything it was nice to see them exploring art a little more.

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