I got to spend three amazing days recently in my studio with a little art buddy, Lilly. She was a complete delight to meet and work with. We explored many things with great enthusiasm in a short but very enriching period of time. In retrospect, one particular memorable moment occurred in the making of her rather large two-paged cardboard book where the only visible text inside was,
“Once Upon A Time Lilly”
As she created girlish figures in a landscape in this imaginative book, Lilly impressed upon me that branches on a tree don’t always have to branch out at the top. She collected and painted twigs from outside the studio, then proceeded to carefully space and stack them up from the bottom of the tree trunk. She exclaimed with enthusiasm, “It’s a ladder!” Perhaps it served as a way up to meet with the eagle she drew which was nestled in green printed leaves at the top.
We spent three days surprising one another with collaborative ideas and perceptions. Seeing, then perceiving what could be transformed into a different reality is intrinsic to the artistic journey. Lilly, of course, was quite proficient at it! I learned how to be still and listen to the unique point of view of a child and acquiesce to her desires in the creative process wherever possible.
Scanning the space for new inspiration is constantly in play. Yarn, a studio staple for encouraging and inspiring kids, became a simple lesson on how to make a pom-pom. This activity ignited three days of work/play. What’s not to love about pom-poms? How excited we were to both agree to pop one on her little stuffed animal. And we’re off!
A plethora of stimulating materials spring fresh ideas into action. Balloons have always been synonymous with a party atmosphere, and in the studio it is no exception. I initiated our dialogue with a suggestion to print flowers, then add stems, etc. Lilly, however, dove in and stamped away. Freedom! It was only natural to encourage splatters and fabulous drips! Hands got into the action as well
A special heartfelt thanks to Lilly’s parents. What a privilege to have this opportunity to nurture my love for art with your precious daughter. Or did she nurture me?
“In everything give thanks…” 1Th5:18