Art Love and Links

I had purchased the book Henri Matisse: Drawing with Scissors a few months back.

Zahra took the greatest interest in the book and we read it a few times. She said Vincent Van Gogh still remains her favourite all time artist but she has a definite interest in Matisse. She created her own Matisse inspired cut-out.

Matisse Inspired Cut Out

Matisse Inspired Cut Out

Since then there have been days of sketching that stretch for hours at a time.

Both kids love searching online for a picture they have in mind to draw, or a video that they want to follow and use to learn how to sketch. They grab their materials and draw.

They Set Themselves Up To Draw

They Set Themselves Up To Draw

One excellent website they use and love is artforkidshub.com

They use different mediums, pictures that are fun and relevant to young people, and to top it off the artist’s children are the ones drawing on the video. I find my kids prefer videos and learning where there are other actual children that are in the creation process.

Artforkidshub.com Drawing Lesson

Artforkidshub.com Drawing Lesson

Zahra's Owl

Zahra’s Owl

Zahra's Drawing of Anna from the Frozen movie

Zahra’s Drawing of Anna from the Frozen movie

Ronan's Drawing of Captain Underpants. A favourite series of both children.

Ronan’s Drawing of Captain Underpants. A favourite series of both children.

I cannot say enough about why art must be a part of the learning process. This goes not only for homeschoolers, but traditional school as well.

Art naturally builds your creative thinking, critical thinking, verbal skills, creative problem solving and cognitive ability as well. The arts of course, include not only sketching and drawing, but music, movement and performance as well.

The beauty of art allows it to play a part in every element of learning. Drawing a map, acting out a history lesson or story, creative writing, adding your own illustrations to a story, writing lyrics or music for a song, studying art history, examining design, music or dance from a specific culture or country. It can stand alone or be incorporated into each project.

Ronan drew this as an illustration for an ongoing story saga that his grandmother has been telling the kids over many years. The story is about Polly the Polar Bear a miniature polar bear that travels the world. In this story Polly saved a blue whale.

Ronan drew this as an illustration for an ongoing story saga that his grandmother has been telling the kids over many years. The story is about Polly the Polar Bear a miniature polar bear that travels the world. In this story Polly saved a blue whale. Polly is walking on top of the whale in this illustration he made.

 

Ronan has an interest in learning the guitar. Before his lessons begin he has been using an online guitar lesson, listening to songs that have a strong guitar element (Led Zepplin and White Stripes are current favourites), and learning the parts of his guitar.

Ronan has an interest in learning the guitar. Before his lessons begin he has been using an online guitar lesson, listening to songs that have a strong guitar element (Led Zepplin and White Stripes are current favourites), and learning the parts of his guitar.

 

He decided to sketch out his guitar to diagram each part.

He decided to sketch out his guitar to diagram each part.

 

The Finished Diagram

The Finished Diagram

 

We are also adding activities and visits to the local fine arts centre in our area.

We love hearing of ways that others incorporate art and creativity into their lives and family. Do you also feel that arts education is crucial?

 

Here are some interesting links and studies on the value of art education in a child’s life.

http://www.edutopia.org/arts-music-curriculum-child-development 

http://www.rand.org/pubs/monographs/MG290.html

Ted Talks-

http://ed.ted.com/search?utf8=%E2%9C%93&qs=art

What I Missed

Last week I felt like I was missing something. Like we were missing something in our school days.

Something that I know we all enjoyed, that we still do from time to time, but in different ways and not to the extent that we had been in Jamaica and Korea.

Now I understand that maybe it is just the natural progression of learning, but I still miss this activity. 

Art.

The creation, study and appreciation of art.

I spoke with my kids about how I was feeling and asked their opinion. They agreed.

So during our morning reading time that we always start our day with the three of us looked at a book my mother-in-law had lent me about Pablo Picasso’s Guernica.

Last year in Korea we had done artist studies on Pablo Picasso, Vincent Van Gogh, and Gauguin. Both Gauguin and Picasso had featured exhibits, the first at the Seoul Museum of Art and the other at the Seoul Arts Center(SAC) so they were timely artist studies. 

Gauguin did not capture them as Van Gogh and Picasso did. (I admit, I am more of the Gauguin fan) Their favourite paintings are Starry Night, and Starry Night on the Rhone, but they were fascinated with the story behind Picasso’s Guernica. 

So last week we looked through the book Picasso’s Guernica – History, Transformations, Meanings by Herschel B. Chipp. The book is a bit intensive for younger readers but offers excellent detail on that particular painting, showing the research, planning, photographs and sketches that went into the large piece. 

We talked about the details and the small parts that really came together to make it (Guernica) whole. We talked about the sheer grand size of Guernica. 

Then Ronan announced, “okay, I’m done, I want to draw now.” Zahra declared she was going to paint, told me the materials she needed, and they both set themselves up to create.

Starting Out

Starting Out

Beginning Painting

Beginning Painting

Ronan was very adamant that he was creating only what he wanted to, his ideas that he currently had in his mind. I just helped them with materials set up and left them to work. 

Ronan worked for a hours. Drawing, taking a break, coming back to it, cutting, talking about his ideas and sharing them with me as he worked. He took the entire morning on his piece. 

Part Of The Process

Part Of The Process

Cutting Each Design

Cutting Each Design

Placing and Pasting

Placing and Pasting

Zahra sat and painted until she was done, no breaks in between and promptly wanted to display her work when she was finished. 

The Painting

The Painting

Zahra's Finished Piece

Zahra’s Finished Piece

Both pieces were beautiful and unique to each person. 

Ronan's Finished Piece

Ronan’s Finished Piece

As I watched the kids work I remembered what I was missing about our art days.

It wasn’t necessarily the actual pieces that we were creating that I missed, but it was what those art days created for us. A chance to express our thoughts, ideas and emotions in another form. A chance to express something we had learned in a colourful or abstract way. Most importantly, what I missed was the beauty and calm that the process creates for us.