This session we are working on the same warm up exercises as the big kids: this week we did Reverse Blind Contour drawings(objects in a bag). We weren't really sure what the exercise was at first, I think, and the objects were just so curious so we were all peeking ALOT. We thought about our one hand as trying to trace the forms of the objects so our other hand could draw them and reveal a form - trying to see with our hands, we started to draw with purpose. We did this in pairs to collaborate on the page and we used charcoal, conte crayon and china marker on brown kraft too-like the big kids. We had a lot of fun revealing our objects afterwards and evaluating where and how they resembled what they actually were.
I am thinking about how the younger children worked differently than the big kids. The younger kids could readily un-think the 'problem' of what's in the bag into a challenge of describing the shapes with their drawings and then guessing what that might be afterwards. The big kids challenge was more about how to let go of what they already knew was in the bag through inference, and to really just listen only to what their hands were telling them. In both cases the challenge was met to quite literally feel our way into drawing.
We also worked on our group painting and started to make paper bag puppets or draw in our sketchbooks, or on mylar. Some of you continued to draw with the charcoal and conte, others switched to pencils and marker. And we looked at and arranged our beaver sticks.
An interesting thing happened this studio. One of you started doing a "Kick-Me" sign for their puppet, then others joined in with "Hit-Me!" and "Punch-Me Hard!" signs too. This started a very reasonable conversation about what we would do if we saw somebody with a sign like that on their back (Thanks Heather!)--which quickly prompted questions about what it might mean to be kind, and a framing of our concerns by realizing that standing up for others, is standing up for ourselves as kind and thoughtful people. Some of us then put a sign on Mr. Potato Head because we wanted to take a picture of him as if he were getting punched. It's important to realize no one wanted anyone to really get punched but for some reason really liked the idea of it in a photo - that it maybe reminded us of something we'd seen, or thought it was funny because it was not happening us! Which is something to think about. We also talked briefly about slapstick comedy: pies in the face and slipping on banana peels, and why that makes some of us laugh, and others cringe. It's a spectrum.
Busy and mindful studio!