Tuesday, July 31, 2007

whatever you say, bud

Levi did this drawing at school last week. When I remarked on how beautiful the colors were, he said, "It's a man with two beards and a lot of sunglasses."

I love how kids can draw these totally random scribbles and squiggles and shapes and when you say, "What is it?" they've always got some very specific and hilarious answer for you. But, not to be totally lacking in humor or taking this whole parenting thing too seriously or anything, the question has kind of bothered me. I wonder whether by asking it, over time, we are helping to limit kids' creativity. I mean, why are we always expecting what they draw to be something? Why can't it just be random scribbles and squiggles and shapes? Why can't it just be about the process? Have they really drawn what they tell us they've drawn (the rocket ship, the family at a picnic, the shark eating a fish, etc.), or are they just supplying an answer because they sense we want one and the picture isn't complete until it can be described representationally? (And can you tell I was an art history major?)

So I have stopped asking my kids, "What is it?" when they show me their artwork and instead tried to comment on the more abstract qualities, like the bright colors, or the busyness and energy, and also to talk about how much they must have enjoyed working on it.

Further proof that I am a totally awesome mom and my kids will have absolutely no problems or difficulties or issues. None.

1 comment:

dogfaceboy said...

Hahahaha. Wait till they're nine and washing their hands every five minutes.

I love those elaborate answers. I miss them. Now that she's a brilliant artist, she's actually drawing the things she says she is drawing.