This class made my heart absolutely sing! There is something so beautiful about watching young children create awareness about their 'self.' I didn't want to get hung up on doing realistic portraits, as this would not have been age appropriate. Instead, I wanted kids to think about, explore, and play with the unique qualities that make them who they are.
It feels very natural to do an abstract workshop with preschoolers because most of their art is already abstract. We were simply leaning in to a style that is developmentally appropriate.
While I wanted kids to feel free to create in a way that feels good to them, preschoolers tend to go overboard when given free rein of too many options. Like when they have all the paint colors and it just becomes brown. With this in mind, I built lots of layers into my lesson plan so that there were natural stopping points and there was no need to verbally limit.
What I love about abstract art is that there isn’t one way to create it. It takes the pressure off of perfection and allows art to be therapeutic. I personally love abstract art because the art is less about what “it is” and more about the emotional response it evokes. At this process art workshop, I really wanted kids to let loose and create in a way that felt right to them.
Summer break finally gave me an opportunity to create a process art workshop for the big kids (ages 6-12). I was excited to work with this new age group and see what variations it brought to the art process.
Elementary age kids already have experience working with glue. Instead of just playing with glue like we did with the Mini Makers, I wanted to increase the complexity for this older age group. I was inspired by artistic team Chiaozza's cartoon plant sculptures. Chiaozza is really a combination of two names, Adam Frezza & Terri Chiao. They are the perfect collaborative team to inspire process art projects because their work is in the spirit of play and experimentation. Their paper mache plant sculptures are fun and whimsical. I wanted to bring some of that whimsy into the studio.
Our Mini Makers “Super Sticky” 2-Day workshop was every bit as fun as I dreamed. This workshop mulled around in my brain for a while before it became a reality. I was inspired by the book ‘Too Much Glue’ by Jason Lefebvre, as well as my years of experience watching preschoolers use glue. I wanted to give our Mini Makers the opportunity to play and experiment with glue, showcasing it as its own form of media.