A side activity that I have in my art practice is hosting workshops. Making art with kids is so much fun. I did three workshops in a row and I hosted the same structure with them, but all with so much different results. Which makes it absolutely fantastic.
First we start it off small. We draw, and watercolour some pre-filled papers. I noticed it is a good way to see what their capacities are and to use as base for the rest of the workshop.
It also calms them a lot, they know in general how it works and where to move on from that. Soon after we cut out the drawing. Just to neglect the habit of always working on the same size paper, but that we have the power to give it another size.
Then we notch it up a bit and move to a size of bigger paper. They get wild, it is fun to see how enthusiastic a 5 year old can be over an A3 paper sheet. So I let them create their own desires on it. Then I ask them to rip it apart, a full new chock. Some of them make multiple ones and still never manage to destroy their babies. Others dive fully in it and recreate something new with the leftovers. In every case, it is not the act of doing that counts. It’s the act of knowing it is an option.
Then the big big surprise moment arrives. I got the A2 paper. Omg, it is bigger than they are in most cases and some of the kids make a theatre around it, they fake faint, start sizing themselves with it. Go lie on top of it and some just start crying because it is too big. The funniest occasion was a kid that went <moewhahahha> smiling while cuddling his paper sheet.
It is only until we start using the big paper we start using paint. Why, you would ask? Well, it is a mess, a big big mess. I ask parents to give them old clothes and they all bring a plastic protection veste. But seriously, some children can shower some of the kids and I already did multiple times. I always protect the floor with waxed table cloth, but if I start with this part it is too much of a mess to come back from. Also, by the time that they get here, they feel creatively opened up and are conscious of their movements. Also I know better, which kids need some more attention in controlling their movement and paint.
So, how do I get them to stay in one place? I make rules in the beginning of the course. If I clap it means they need to give me all attention, stop moving and be silent. Seriously, they can be so loud. If I snap my fingers it means we’re doing great and we need to speed up, we’re going faster and faster. What if they leave the floor protection? The floor is lava, and we’re burning our feet. It is fun, because they correct each other on this aspect. I barely ever need to say anything about this.
Telling you these parents, you can chill, your kids are lovely and are naturally talented, of course some more then others but all of them know what they like and love and create in their own way amazing things.