Square of Destiny
I have a friend, Dan, who is a professional artists. He and I are working on a project together; my writing and his art. That being said, I had to send him pictures of my daughter's artwork that she did for school the other night.
As we homeschool, I try to indulge her artistic abilities. One, because the public education realm doesn't think it's a priority (so very wrong in that conclusion) and two, using process art actually aids a child in problem solving skills. I will clarify that process art is where children are given a medium, such as paint, clay, loose parts, paper, crayons, markers and then given minimal instructions. As they work on their art project you see how they process the assignment and note how they complete their work. The emphasis is on how the art is completed, not what the final result is. When the focus is on the final result (these 4 sticks will equal a square) that is product art. It removes the creativity and thought process.
As all of the art my daughter does is process art, I give her free reign on her assignments. She is nine years old now and watching her explore her artistic side is fascinating. From sticking her tongue out on the edge of her lip, to turning her head sideways reviewing her work, to singing about the colors she is working with is a wonderful experience to behold.
Where does my artist friend tie into all of this? Well, let me tell you. I sent him the three pictures she painted that night. What triggered my thought in sending them was that as soon as she was finished with each painting, she immediately named them. It made me think of Dan. He is always sending me previews of his work and of course they are all named. When my daughter named her artwork, I thought, "Dan will get a kick out of this".
I texted the three paintings. He and I both liked the one picture in particular. My daughter named it, "Square of Destiny". Not really sure where she comes up with the names, but they were all very fitting for each one of her paintings. Her first two paintings were very bright and cheery. "Square of Destiny" was a bit darker and more abstract.
Dan loved them all but started asking me questions about "Square of Destiny". He asked the size? Then he asked, "how much does she want for it?" I thought he was being nice. I said, "it's just a casual painting. We don't consider selling her work." He told me she has potential for being an artist, especially, if she continues to grow her talent. When I offered to just give him her painting, he wouldn't hear of it. He said she should be compensated like any artist.
The conversation continued. I told my daughter she had someone interested in her painting. I asked if she would be interested in a trade of her work for his work. She loved that idea (it was Dan's idea really). I logged into his website and she picked out one of his prints. It was available, so he is going to mail it to her and we'll send him her painting in return.
My daughter was beyond excited. She had successfully bartered her first artwork piece. Considering she just turned nine a couple weeks ago, I think she's off to a great start in her artistic career. While she loves all forms of art, she enjoys painting with watercolors the best. She's used various paint mediums already, but does her best work with water color. While I am not that artistic, I am encouraging her every step of the way. Who knows? Perhaps one day, Dan will let us borrow her first "official" painting for when she has her first gallery showing.
Image Credit » Photo by Me