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Artistically G&T

(29 Posts)
Ikanon Wed 08-Nov-17 22:54:49

My 4.8 year old DD has what my graphic designer friend describes as 'A - Level' talent at drawing. She draws better than me but I failed art at school so luckily I married DH.

What can I do to help her grow her talent? She draws every day but if I knew techniques to introduce to her to she could branch out a bit. I'm completely out of my depth!

Couchpotato3 Wed 08-Nov-17 23:04:54

I think at that age, I'd just let her enjoy experimenting with different materials and not worry too much about 'technique'. Maybe take her to see some art locally and encourage her to have a go at anything she fancies, kids' holiday workshops and that sort of thing. There are so many different kinds of art out there. How about a trip to your local Hobbycraft shop or something similar? She could try some modelling clay, painting pots, collage, drawing with pastels, chalks, charcoal....the possibilities are endless! Get her started with some simple sewing maybe? Exploring textiles? Photography?

BobbiPins Thu 09-Nov-17 00:08:04

I work in this field. So my advice to the parents of artistically gifted children:
1) Show them a lot of great art. This is very important. Take them to the National Gallery, all the best museums, have art catalogues at home, nice posters with famous paintings around the house; it will help them develop a good taste, and show them what is possible.
2) Admire their drawings; believe in their talent. The confidence you help them build will go a loooong way if they decide one day to work in a creative field.
3) Have art materials available to them, and show them how to use it (for example, show them they need to rinse a brush switching colours if they want to keep they colours bright)
4) You can do simple exercises with them that develop hand-eye coordination: drawing parallel lines, drawing rectangular shapes, drawing circles and ovals (can turn it into a game to make it more entertaining). Calligraphy is also good at any age.
5) Professional training can start from about 10-12 years old (teaching about perspective, value, shading etc). In my opinion, there are no benefits whatsoever to start earlier than that. Professional training means significant effort. A child must really want to learn these things. Starting too early can kill the magic. Rembrandt did not start training until he was 15 years old (but he studied calligraphy earlier).

Remember, you cannot force someone to be an artist. You can only create opportunities for their talent to blossom.

Hauntedlobster Thu 09-Nov-17 00:11:37

“So luckily I married DH”

Right, what?

greyfriarskitty Thu 09-Nov-17 10:13:24

I know a professional illustrator whose biggest bugbear is the quality of materials given to children. It's impossible to draw well with bad tools, so get her some interesting stuff like pastels and charcoal pencils, but also good quality felt tips, pencils and so on.

DD is not this kind of talent, but very interested in art, and there are so many workshops at weekends and in the holidays (even where we are in the sticks). She loves these and it has introduced her to different kinds of printing and ideas about art.

BobbiPins Thu 09-Nov-17 19:08:46

Greyfriar makes a good point about quality art materials.

Ikanon Fri 10-Nov-17 09:00:21

We have a huge (100 litre) craft box full of stuff but very good point made about quality. We've recently bought her quality pens thin ink ones as that's her preferred drawing pen. She had access to my random pen pot and consistently chose that one.

It never occurred to me to take her to see art but that's a great idea. We do go to a place that has an art gallery but we've never been in. We should. Because I'm not arty we tend to do things that interest us so hadn't considered that before.

We're both hugely supportive of her art and creations and she knows we're proud of her. She wrote a book this week with illustrations. The writing was readable but the illustrations were excellent.

I could help practice shape forming as at the moment it's drawing what she wants but I could direct her to perfect her shapes.

Hauntedlobster because DH is good (not amazing but better than me) at art and my whole family is notoriously poor at drawing. So I'm lucky I married a man and had a child with his genetic ability to draw rather than mine.

Miniwerewolfhugs Fri 10-Nov-17 09:05:12

My dd likes art and there are lots of resources on YouTube that she has used to teach herself to draw.

BobbiPins Fri 10-Nov-17 22:41:14

Ikanon, she wrote a book, that is so adorable!

Let her draw what she wants, don't push anything if she doesn't like it. Skills can be picked up later, let her enjoy drawing.

irvineoneohone Sat 11-Nov-17 06:49:43

This book is great for experimenting.

Ikanon Sat 11-Nov-17 20:41:49

I took her to an art gallery exhibiting a children's illustrator today. She loved it! She loved the idea of creating things that people want to hang on their walls. Bless her she said she wanted to be an illustrator when she grows up. We gave her some new pens today which she's used to great effect. She was really interested in the idea of using different pens for different drawings. DH thinks we should get her watercolours but I think that's a bit of a step too far.

The book is lovely mix of all of her favourite interests at the moment smile

Ikanon Sat 11-Nov-17 20:43:51

Irvine that's a great Christmas idea thank you

Nix32 Sat 11-Nov-17 20:55:34

We use water colours with 4 year olds at school - they pick it up really quickly. She sounds fab.

irvineoneohone Sat 11-Nov-17 21:31:22

We used this kind of water colour brush pens when ds was younger.

LIZS Sat 11-Nov-17 21:35:16

There are books which explore famous paintings , Van Gogh's Sunflowers for example, and can tie in to gallery visits.

ILoveDolly Sat 11-Nov-17 21:40:56

Maybe she would enjoy art journaling

LIZS Sat 11-Nov-17 21:41:02 there are other titles in the same series.

Ikanon Sun 12-Nov-17 15:34:25

Irvine she would love those pens!!!

Ikanon Sun 12-Nov-17 15:37:20

May I ask what art journalling is please?

She's also hugely into books so I can see another Christmas present being added there thank you.

irvineoneohone Sun 12-Nov-17 19:31:16

If you google art journal ideas/images, 100s of images comes up.

Ikanon Mon 13-Nov-17 17:31:52

Thank you. I think she's inadvertently started a few of these already but I think finding some quality paper books and materials would help.

irvineoneohone Tue 14-Nov-17 08:14:20

How exciting! smile

LordSugarWillSeeYouNow Wed 22-Nov-17 08:04:26

My ds is exceptional at art and is doing it at GCSE now. His little sister is 6 and is starting to display the same amount of enthusiasm and talent and neither of them take after me, I'm useless grin

This is one of dd's recent pics

Ikanon Sat 21-Apr-18 22:11:56

@irvineoneohone I just wanted to say thank you for your excellent recommendations. After a demo lesson from DH she's really got into watercolour landscapes which wasn't on her radar before.

We also got her this which I highly recommend to hone features of a style.

Her eyes on pictures have come on leaps and bounds since practicing faces in this book.

irvineoneohone Thu 26-Apr-18 06:44:21

Thank you for update, Ikanon. I'm really happy to hear that she enjoys it. smile

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