The Colours That You Mix

It’s a very other-worldly feeling to be journeying life through a pandemic.  In the grocery stores, yesterday, I felt to be plunked into the opening scenes of a Sci-Fi movie.  Sometimes a person just has to find a way to ground themselves when all else; health, economy, events and travel are floundering.  I almost feel that this is a guilty pleasure in these times…writing about children and painting.  But in doing this, I feel like a rope has been tied around my ankles…someone is tugging…and I am easing my way, like an overfilled balloon… coming to rest on the ground.  This is what I do.

At one time, I wrote about painting with Green in March.

This year, my friend, Claudia, inspired me by the painting she did with her students.  My practice, as a guest teacher, is to promote painting with children.  It can be so messy…there is the preparation and there is the clean-up…but Claudia doesn’t shy away from any of that.  She is a remarkably inspiring Div 1 teacher.  Thank you, Claudia!

After seeing the results of Claudia’s art lesson, I went out into a Div 1 classroom and painted the very next week.

And following that, Gillian also painted with little ones.  Gillian has had a long and accomplished career as an educator and she is also not one to shy away from paint.

I wanted to post all of these resulting paintings at the same time in order to illustrate the variety that can be achieved with paint….same concept…same lesson…but, each and every painting is unique and each of the three sets of paintings is using a different palette of green.  If you look about the hallways of elementary schools, if you see that there is a sameness about the works that children create, there is the possibility that their outcomes have been engineered to be close-ended; it also means that the means to get there may have been closed. (the trouble with most Pinterest activities) Try letting go, just a little, at first.  The resulting projects may not be as predictable, but this is what creativity and visual art should excite in children.

Children are magical.  May they be safe and may their teacher’s be safe through these trying times.  Happy March!  Happy GREEN!

Claudia’s Palette.  (I didn’t include images of students painting because their little faces were in the photos.)

Kath’s Palette.

Gillian’s Palette

January 21, 2015 at the Rumble

Sometimes, it’s just a matter of letting your ideas float while painting.  This past week, I had a dream…something about seeing a face looking up out of the bottom of a well.  It was dark down that hole, but I could still see the face.  Instead of being made of rock, the walls were made of lush green foliage and plant life.

  “Green is symbolic of communicating care on a subtle, energetic level. When we dream of green, we are imbued with a magical ability to transfer knowledge by unorthodox means. Green facilitates growth, love and healing by mental stimulation. Greeks believed intelligence came from the heart. This combined with the green of the heart chakra talks to us about emotional intelligence and communicating with an open heart. I realize I’m being vague here, this kind of ethereal communication isn’t easily identified. However, we can look to mother nature for help in explanation. She speaks in viridian tongue – communicating a sea of burgeoning growth – all expressed by the color green. When we dream of green we’re experiencing levels of healing and growth that are subtle. It’s time to concentrate on the areas of our lives that need to flourish. Once we hone in, and begin to express our identification on an emotional (heart) level, our growth will be exponential and immense.”

I have no idea what was going on or who it was, but I’ve heard that all characters that one sees in a dream are the self.  I would consider this character to be a shadow person.

Given a two hour time limit, painting at the Rumble House does not always allow for a real resolution to a painting, but rather, allows the artist enough time to put the idea down in an instant.  Most of these works would be considered sketches of a sort.  I did not achieve the depth in this painting that was in my mind.  This would have required many more layers.  I tried to create the sense of coming out of depths quickly, by painting central dark to outward light auras regardless.  I got a quick snap shot, but not the result I had hoped for.

The inspirations that were drawn from the wheel of doom included 1) a whale breaching 2)  These

DSC_1845

DSC_1843And 3) hmm….something inspired by a Dylan Thomas poem.  Each evening at Rumble House, as was true of the Gorilla House, these inspirations may be included/explored by the artists in their works or be ignored all together.

Some of the real highlights last night were having ukelele music flowing live out of the heart of Emma Rouleau in the house.

Nina, of Hear’s My Soul Cafe was in the house, along with her friend, Steve.  The two of them had a bit of a bidding war on my piece, but Steve managed the final bid.  Thanks, Steve!  It’s ok…Nina left with two fantastical pieces, one painted by my artist-buddy, Jennifer and the other by a new-to-the-rumble artist, Nick.  Both, beautiful works!

Here’s the lovely Nina with Jennifer Stinson’s work.

DSC_1852It was good to talk to you, Stacey and to learn that you read my blog.  It always surprises me when people connect with my writing.  So, I was grateful for that.

Thanks to Andy for pulling over to say good night.  And, I had a wonderful chat with another artist (I want to say that her name is Lorraine…please send me a message and let me know your name!) (LOUISE!!  Her name is Louise!  She read this and contacted me!  So happy about that!) at the doorway, as I was leaving.  She is a woman after my own heart.  Priscilla, yes, I am coming out of the grief and I have appreciated your inspiration along the way.

Thanks to Steve, who generously purchased this piece at auction.  Now, off to teach grade threes!  We’re painting images based on the Taj Mahal today!  Stay tuned!

DSC_1850

 

It’s easy, being green!

It’s been -30 degrees lately…bitter cold.  It takes resolve to think about spring time…plants pushing out from the earth…birds nesting…Being Green!

“From a meaning of colors perspective, green is also the color of growth, the color of spring, of renewal and rebirth. It renews and restores depleted energy. It is the sanctuary away from the stresses of modern living, restoring us back to a sense of well being. This is why there is so much of this relaxing color on the earth, and why we need to keep it that way.”

Al Green…


up into the silence the green…

up into the silence the green
silence with a white earth in it

you will(kiss me)go

out into the morning the young
morning with a warm world in it

(kiss me)you will go

on into the sunlight the fine
sunlight with a firm day in it

you will go(kiss me

down into your memory and
a memory and memory

i)kiss me,(will go)

e. e. cummings

Echoing Green by William Blake!

With grade twos, IT’S EASY BEING GREEN!   Imagine!  Grade twos paint Celtic crosses and a four-leaf clover, as they contemplate March!

1. Begin with dots in chalk on the edges of your picture plane!

2. Reach for these dots, so that your cross/shamrock is large and fills the space.  There are NO MISTAKES…just rub a little with your hand and make your changes with chalk again. (If you draw with just a little pressure, the lines are easier to change….just get darker and darker as you change your minds.)

3. All sorts of green paints…remember, two hands on the bucket!  Dip! Wipe! Stroke!

4. Paint in your Celtic Cross solid, one colour!  Outline your four-leaf clover and then fill it in with a new colour.  Remember!  Walk-don’t-run to the paint center.

5. Now, time to decorate.  Think of different shapes that you can use to decorate.  Reminder?  How is that you can tell when paint is dry?  RIGHT!  It’s lighter in colour.

MAGIC!  Green Magic!

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Green

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A child said, What is the grass?

A child said, What is the grass? fetching it to me with full
hands;
How could I answer the child?. . . .I do not know what it
is any more than he.

I guess it must be the flag of my disposition, out of hopeful
green stuff woven.

Or I guess it is the handkerchief of the Lord,
A scented gift and remembrancer designedly dropped,
Bearing the owner’s name someway in the corners, that we
may see and remark, and say Whose?

Or I guess the grass is itself a child. . . .the produced babe
of the vegetation.

Or I guess it is a uniform hieroglyphic,
And it means, Sprouting alike in broad zones and narrow
zones,
Growing among black folks as among white,
Kanuck, Tuckahoe, Congressman, Cuff, I give them the
same, I receive them the same.

And now it seems to me the beautiful uncut hair of graves.

Tenderly will I use you curling grass,
It may be you transpire from the breasts of young men,
It may be if I had known them I would have loved them;
It may be you are from old people and from women, and
from offspring taken soon out of their mother’s laps,
And here you are the mother’s laps.

This grass is very dark to be from the white heads of old
mothers,
Darker than the colorless beards of old men,
Dark to come from under the faint red roofs of mouths.

O I perceive after all so many uttering tongues!
And I perceive they do not come from the roofs of mouths
for nothing.

I wish I could translate the hints about the dead young men
and women,
And the hints about old men and mothers, and the offspring
taken soon out of their laps.

What do you think has become of the young and old men?
What do you think has become of the women and
children?

They are alive and well somewhere;
The smallest sprouts show there is really no death,
And if ever there was it led forward life, and does not wait
at the end to arrest it,
And ceased the moment life appeared.

All goes onward and outward. . . .and nothing collapses,
And to die is different from what any one supposed, and
luckier.

Walt Whitman