Friday, 27 July 2018

Why I am painting with my tiny toddler

I love my work and I am spending all my free time and work time on drawing and painting. It is a big part of my life and naturally I want my child to take part in it.

My daughter is 1,5 years old and I am painting with her since she is 1. She will not only learn more about mixing colours and the feel of real paint, but she will learn something about me, her mummy, about my passion and my trade. I came to believe that if you wish your children to understand what you are doing (maybe even who you are), you don't have to do much more than just make them part of your life, the private one and the professional one.

It wasn't quite easy to start with, when she took the brush and just jabbed it onto the paper and then was looking around which of our furniture will be next. I have to admit, I was sweating cold sweat trying to get her to focus on the paper only. Experience taught me to use large scale paper, that I could wrap the whole table in (our coffee table in the living room). We both learned how to paint together. I learned how to make it interesting for her, and she learned that she can get more fun out of it, if she sticks within the (loose) boundaries I gave her.

I use acrylic paint with her, which is madness to use with little kids, but brilliant at the same time. Acrylic paint is not washable from any textiles and dries quickly. The good part, however, overweighs for me the negatives by tones. You can mix the colours directly on the canvas, and you can literally observe the mixing procedure (how blue and yellow slowly turn into green, for example, the more often you smear over them). You can feel the goopy paint and squeeze it and smear it, make paths and patterns on paper, or maybe on your tummy. For that reason we paint stripped down to the nappy and the colour just goes everywhere. Acrylic is water based and washes super easy from the skin. It dries quickly on the skin as well, so there is (nearly) no danger of the little fingers leaving prints on the furniture.

These are our recent results, and we use the fun to make lovely greeting cards for the grandparents too :-)

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