Often when I am working on a painting, my son wanders in and insists on painting with me. This time I set him up with his own canvas panel, some acrylic paint, and a graphite pencil to let him create to his hearts desire. Well, his heart desired lots of painting, but most of it was not saved for the canvas.
It's so beautiful to see him lost in his own little creative world! But I do kind of wish that I hadnt left the room to answer the phone and returned to find that he had drawn in a colorful mustache and beard for himself. He had very little interest in working on the canvas any further than he already had, no matter how much coaxing I offered.
There were all these large globs of paint smeared across the board with scribbles of graphite behind them. There was lots of white space left and the shape and texture of what he created really interested me. I was feeling inspired and had felt recently challenged by post that a friend had done that day about painting more freely with less thinking and planning, so I squeezed out more color and started working away around his work. Here's what I came up with.
I covered it in a resin glaze to really accentuate the textures and globs all over it. It makes me feel really happy to look at it. I created an 8X10 print of this collaboration with my son, if you are interested. You can find it HERE.
Try this exercise sometime. Take a picture or painting that your child has made and add to it, using their artwork as a design element. You'd be surprised how much it frees your process up to be more loose and accept flaws while using them to your advantage.