Friday, May 25, 2007

The Big Word is "WOW!"

It's been a while since my colors haven't come in professional quality and paintings were not properly framed, but now this finger painted watercolor has been on my refrigerator for two months. There are crayons and baby kittens under the dining table, stickers on the French doors to the living room and finger prints 'hugged' onto my knees. If you've been reading along, you know that there is a not quite two-year old in residence.

Recently both Martha and Nita wrote about the little artists in their families. Nita mentioned the unexpected directions a four-year old takes -- not always what you think. Martha wrote about the inspiration found in a four-year old's painting and that the "four-year old" is now headed to college for a design career. My little artist and her Mamma used fingers on semi-moist glitter-filled watercolor pans for this painting -- an exploration which included feeling, tasting and smelling.

So, I thought about the effect of little children on artists' observations, thought processes and studios. I decided it is the freedom, the excitement and the discovery. It's the freedom to play, to be joyous, to be silly and child-like. It's the excitement of new powers of observation so that suddenly directions are different. It's the discovery of color, dirt, bugs, light, big trucks, ants, texture, flowers, water, water, and what can be done with water . . . all of which leads to exploration of new processes, new subjects, new points of view. It's the WOW! of every minute of the day.

When I left the house this morning, there was a painting session going on in the dining room. I wondered whether there would be a new "masterpiece" at the end of the day. When I returned, it was on the mantel. WOW!

I recommend that artists occasionally borrow a two year old or maybe a four year old.


KJ said...

And double wow! Very impressive!

Annette Bush said...

Is that double wow one for the painting and one for the writing?!! -very big grin- I was pretty impressed with the painting myself.

Martha Marshall said...

Thank you, Annette, for this joyous piece of writing. Made me smile to remember similar things about having the little ones around. They always had markers and paper and crayons and paint easily at hand.

But once, after the kids had gone back home, I literally left peanut-butter hand prints on the lower half of my cabinets for several days before I could bear to wash them off.

Annette Bush said...

Peanut butter hand prints. How funny, Martha. Only an artist grandmother. . . . and thanks for the comment on the writing.