Tuesday, 22 March 2011

Owls and Cats and Pompoms ... Oh My!!

A few months ago Jack was having nightmares about a black cat with yellow eyes.  It was disturbing him in a way I've not seen before and so to help him process it I asked him if he could draw the cat for me.  He did.  But then he asked me if I could help him draw a better cat. Because I'm not a drawer I started looking online for some tutorials.

I found a site called Art Projects for Kids.  Its got some great examples of how to draw certain things and prompted a lot of discussion with Jack and Hamish about how drawing things realistically is often about looking for different shapes in an object and putting them all together.  We printed out quiet a few and made our own little 'How to Draw' book.

No one paid much attention to it after that first week but pox week re-inspired both of the boys to try them again.  As I watched I had some worries that they would think that 'the' way to draw was to follow the directions exactly.  But I was especially excited as I watched how they both added their own details.  Also they have both been using the idea of finding shapes in order to draw other pictures. 

Hamish's second owl, "This one is a square owl mummy and its made of fire!"

Jack's cat.  We printed off a lot of different styles of cat and Jack has played around with all of them.  This is my favourite.

Yesterday the boys got into the craft box and Jack found a little pompom.  He's one of those kids that always has treasures in his pockets or stashed in his hand and after an hour I realised he still had this pompom.  Andrew mentioned that mummy could show them how to make pompoms (thanks for that).  At first I thought that this activity would last about 10 minutes but I was surprised that both of them, especially Jack were so excited by the end result that they kept up pompom making all day.  My mum was an avid needleworker and so I have all of her left over yarns in a myriad of colours and had often wondered what I would do with these little bits of coloured wool.  There was something extra special about watching my boys rummage through her stash and find colours that pleased them to make something that was giving them both so much joy.  

By the end of the day we had made 10 pompoms, in an assortment of rainbow colours.  Some were messy and clashed vibrantly and others were soft little circles of gorgeous complimentary colours.  All of them are beautiful.   

And so its official, pox week is over!!  Jack went to school today and Hamish is no longer contagious.  The funny thing is I'm feeling a little sad about it.  I was enjoying having both of the boys home.  Although some days were challenging enough to have me pulling my hair out in frustration, there was something nurturing about the three of us being stuck in the house and trying to find ways of occupying and enjoying each other.  

Saying that I cant wait for next Monday, when I finally get some 'me time'.  Although knowing me I'll probably spend it mopping the floors, I'm also determined to do something nice for myself... maybe a massage or just sitting quietly for an hour.

Reading - Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell,  Second time I've picked this one up, I'm hoping it grabs me this time
Watching - Weeds S5 
Listening -  Art vs Science, Weeds Soundtrack, James Blake Echoes
State of mind - Happy sad and generally peaceful, Ahhhh ....

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