Monday, 30 March 2009

Paint it Black

and crayon it too...

Today is the first day of Striker art. In Young at Art (see yesterday for details) Striker has a programme for introducing art which has a certain logic behind it. I'm not fully signed up to it so am doing it in my own way but her observations about introducing colours and in particular offering choices of colours make a lot of sense. Her basic argument is that if you give a lot of colours the toddler will spend so much time choosing or picking them up that there will be less time for creativity. I've seen this myself when Isaac's had the whole pot of crayons or all the pens. He'll spend most of his time playing with the materials and less time putting them on paper. I don't think is necessarily a bad thing as it can be as much to play with a box of crayons as it is to play with food. But for a while we're going to try the one colour approach. And as Striker suggests black and white is a good contrast so a good place to start and as all scribbling is a precursor to writing which is most often found in black and white it's another good reason to start with black on white.

It's tempting to go straight in with pens as they make a bold mark on the page and you get an easy line (or dot or scribble) with little effort but Striker is keen that crayons are used as they give different results depending on the strength of the stroke. As you can see here there are some thick dark lines where he was really pounding the crayon onto the paper. It's not exactly rocket science but it's one of those things that seems so obvious when it's mentioned but I hadn't thought about before.

I love the black paint. Isaac really enjoyed doing it and started dabbing the brush to make the feathered splodges which is something I hadn't seen him do before. The bold black looks almost Japanese to my adult eye but as Striker says putting any label on children's art encloses it and takes some of the spirit out of so until he's old enough to draw representations of things himself I'll refrain from naming them as what I see. 

And on a proud mummy moment - we were reading a book this afternoon and I said, what's that? He said, "dats a bird."
It's the first time I've heard him say bird (he usually signs bird and makes a noise) and his string of more than two words. 
Of course he hasn't done it again. 

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