The Artistic Intelligence of a Child

As I was working today, I kept thinking how lovely it is to have a kind of partnership with the painting process and for that matter any of the artistic processes.  I thought about how many times we hear about how doing something over and over again makes it more like second nature, which i am certain has happened for me.  Except today I realized that children when they are handed a brush and paint make the most extraordinary things.

  It never ceases to amaze me how kids will innately place color in such compatible ways and how so very often the composition is spot on.  And as I was thinking about that today as I was in my process of applying the paint to the sculpture, I realized that yes, the countless hours that I have spent placing color on various surfaces certainly has made the process a kind of second nature to me, but equal to that is the fearlessness with which the process must be approached. 

  If I go to the piece all worried about what color, how and where to place it, etc., I will either sit poised above it paralyzed, in fear of choosing wrongly or intellectualize it with color theory and composition and value, attacking it with my brush until it has lost every bit of magic that it once possessed.  

 But if I go with the artistic intelligence of a child, then not only will I find so much more joy in the process, but hopefully a bit of beauty.  It is in that understanding that I realized that the only thing that children haven’t had enough time to practice in their art-making is the fear that they might not know how to make it.

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