March 30, 2012

more than meets the eye

I am not an artist.  Oh, sure, I can sketch a pretty good pony or the distorted likeness of my mom's face, but without fail the pony's head looks like a hotdog bun and the shading between my mom's teeth is so dark that she might as well have some kind of funky gum disease.

Like I said, I am not an artist.

Now, Bright and I are very similar.  Our idea of a good time is a wild round of hang man, or making tiresomely long lists of homonyms.  Bright would forgo a video game for the opportunity to play with the spell check on Microsoft Office.

Not Zion.  Zion is an artist.

The other day, while painting, he asked for permission to dump his brush water all over his paper.  I thought to myself, 'That is going to ruin what he has made, not to mention make a huge mess of the room.'  I gave him permission, anyway, and he was incredibly pleased with the results.  It was exactly what he had envisioned, apparently.

"Look, Mama!" he proudly exclaimed, "here is my painting of Africa."
The craft at our local children's library (a.k.a. Jenny's living room) was a halved apple made from the letter "a."  Zion was a good little boy and followed the instructions, with a glazed-over look of boredom on his face.  Of course he knew how a letter "a" was supposed to look, and of course he could write his name.  He writes it every day on the top right corner of his workbook pages.
After he was done, however, he asked for another set of materials, and while the other kids were off playing, he set to work on his own creation.  The finished result puzzled me.  He had done everything wrong.  I laughed nervously to my friends, excusing his mistakes with a wave of my hand.  "Four-year-olds," I said, or something like that.
And then, when we got home, it occurred to me to flip the paper over and view it through the light.
Well, I'll be.  Turns out there is more to art, and the artist, than meets the eye.