You have to love blogland, you really do. All three artist were so sweet and supportive in their response! Dani was available to call in during my time with the kids and generous enough to offer her time and knowledge as well.
As expected, the kids loved all the whimsical creatures and people I showed them. Just as I was passing out the clay, the phone rang in the classroom. We put it on speaker and when Dani said her name, there was a series of gasps that swept over the room! They could not believe it! It was so long and such a shock to them that we had to laugh. :)Dani prepared a little speech for them and I hope she doesn't mind if I post it here. I think it's great advice for everyone, not just first graders! :)
I would explain how I make my living from art by sculpting..mainlycharacters (of all things..lol) all year long. It took me years to realize that I could make money on what seemed like a silly idea. The point is you never know until you try.
My love for Holiday arts also inspired me to start SpookyTimeJingles an online website where we sell Halloween and Christmas handmade arts all year long!
Also...often in art we can be hard on ourselves b/c we may think what we are doing is never quite good enough. We often think it should have been better.
When the truth is we are right where we are supposed to be. Art is a process just like anything else we learn to do. It can take us many tries to learn how to ride a bike or tie our shoes. It is the same with art, except the fun part is we can always learn something new to do in art. So you can never get bored!
Finally, the next time you are working on an art project and you think you messed it up or made a mistake. I say don't start over! Use that so called mistake and make it part of your project. Every single time I have made a "mistake" I have not given up but instead used in my work and it has always worked out and most times made the piece even better! So the next time you think you made a mistake-turn it into something else... Paint drops can become -polka dots or clouds. Smears can become mountains or even faces...whatever comes from your imagination!
Never feel like you have to color in the lines. Only do that if you want to. Those lines are only a guideline not a rule..so have fun!!
Afterwards, the children got to ask Dani questions. Lots of them were asking, "How do I make a ________?" Such patience Dani exhibited as she went through each creature...her best advice being to start with the belly...I'm going to try that because I always start with the head. As she talked about armatures, they nodded in their understanding...they loved her tips! One girl asked why her favorite holiday is Halloween...Dani replied because it's the one holiday that you can be as silly and free as you want to be...what a lovely answer.
I can't THANK Dani enough for taking the time to help me out this way. She definitely made a difference in their lives that day. Art isn't just something you do to pass the time, it's an everyday part of life and a wonderful outlet for all the little things going on in their little brains!
I'm posting some of their clay creations...check out the cat! I see a future Spookytime Jingles artist!
Here's a video of them saying thank you...they are always a bit on the quiet side because they've been taught not to disrupt the other classes, but they loved it! Thank you Dani! :)