The Dot

One of my boys’ favourite books is called The Dot by Peter H. Reynolds. It is a fantastic book about being able to go ahead and make your mark in this world. I love when books make it so easy to tie art and reading together making his learning so much fun!

DSC02728So the other day I decided to read it to my now 4 year old. We talked about the different kinds of dots in the book after reading it. We then got out some watercolour and some gauche paints to have a go at making our own marks and creating some dots.

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Of course my sons’ dots quickly turned into full fledged paintings, experimenting with colour, line and even tried mixing the two different kids of paint together.  He was definitely not afraid to make his mark and even took the line out of the book stating “I can do better than that” while staring at his first painting. Then ready to start another.

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Being an artist myself, I of course was playing around with the paint and experimenting with how gauche and watercolour mixed together on the paper. I discovered that you could get some very interesting results by doing so.

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A few of my experiments

DSC02749After seeing my dots, my 4yo quickly wanted to paint on smaller paper like me and tried his hand at a few more smaller dots. Then he got out a yellow feather and decided, since we were in the spirit of experimenting, to use the feather to paint with instead of a brush. It created a different look to the paintings. It was exciting to watch him explore paint and technique  all in his own way. And his paintings turned out very abstract and unique.

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And of course, this post wouldn’t be complete without the silly picture of him behind one of his paintings!

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We also actually got a good one of just the two of us as well!

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Chalk Painting

DSC02033I was reading a blog post about painting with chalk and my 3yo looked over my shoulder and said “I can do that!” So you guessed it! That’s what we did. You can find the post with the instructions here.

It was a lot of fun and reminded me a lot of watercolour painting as you get the paper very wet before you use your chalk.

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My 3yo got really into it and by the end of the 2nd paper he got to be quite a mess. He said he was trying to make different colours….maybe he just like experimenting or maybe he just likes getting messy…I am not sure which but he did have fun and that’s all that mattered to me.

DSC02042 DSC02046I mean look at him! One happy boy. I am a firm believer in the idea that process is everything, especially with kids. It doesn’t matter what the end product looks like, but what they learned and experienced by doing it. Definitely an easy project to have in your back pocket when you are out of ideas, or want something that doesn’t take long to set up. Keep in mind though, it could get messy so be prepared with cloths!

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En Plein Air Painting

DSC01087Since the weather was nice last week I wanted to spend as much time outside as possible. With warm sunshine the boys and I could enjoy what Spring has to offer, the playgrounds, our deck, getting the soil ready for planting, etc.

My 3yo wanted to paint one day, so I thought what a perfect day to paint en plein air! I dug up our easel out of the basement (which I am now just planning to leave outside for summer), and went to work helping him set up the paints and paper.

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He seemed invigorated by the warm weather and excited to create something outside!

He went straight to work and mixed colour after colour creating his masterpiece! Once finished I asked him if he would like to try painting on tinfoil, of course he said yes! I found this idea on line here.

DSC01098I first started with an old cereal box, flattened, and then wrapped and taped tinfoil to it. Using a different medium instead of paper created even more excitement and drew up some more creativity. My 3yo had a blast and when finished decided to get a little goofy for the camera. Funny thing is, he didn’t even know he had paint on his nose until I showed him the pictures!DSC01105

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So of course, once my 4yo got home from school, he wanted to paint outside too, he opted for doing two paintings on paper and wasn’t interested in tinfoil, as it seems he had plans for exactly what he was going to paint and was quite serious and methodical about it.

DSC01111While 4yo painted, 3yo used chalk on the chalkboard on the other side, all the while my 5 month old sat watching, intently.

Once the chalk was done my 3yo played in his newly grown “field” in the sandbox with his animals and trucks. So, of course,…..dirt…..DSC01123happens…..all over the 5mth olds body, I had to get a picture of this as the boys thought this was hilarious and my baby didn’t care one bit, ah, he is fitting in nicely already.

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All in all the boys did some pretty awesome art, loved every second being outside and minimal clean-up as the rain will wash most of it away (and the washing machine the rest).

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