Friday, December 29, 2006
Fiona loves painting. She's had exposure to tempera and acrylic paints, but what she loves are watercolours. She loves the intricacies of bleeding colours, washes, dry brush, dry and wet paint, blends and colour combinations. She plays around with these techniques endlessly, not aware of them as techniques per se, just experimenting and experiencing the different ways the paint responds and marries itself to the paper.
Erin went through a watercolour phase a year or so ago, and Fiona insisted on her own set of paints like Erin's. I found her one of the inexpensive Yarka sets that she really liked. They're a little gelatinous, but rich in pigment and they served her well. She wore them out, though, at a rate of about a set a month. Let's not even talk about paper. While I'd sometimes buy her the nice blocks for a treat, I settled on department store 9x12" sheets cut into quarters a lot of the time.
I thought I might buy her a block of good paper and another set of Yarkas for Christmas, but when I went to the local store, they had a sale on a Cotman portfolio & paint set ... 10 tubes of Cotman colours, two fine brushes, a palette, a small pad of good paper and a 12x18" zip-up portfolio. The whole thing was a great deal, around $40 Cdn, what I would pay for three or four monthly Yarka sets and a block of paper. So I bought it. Yup, for a 3-year-old.
She is thrilled. She has almost finished the new pad of paper, though the paints will last ages. She has been creating paintings for people, and when we've mailed them out as gifts, we've enclosed a recent photo, "a photo of the artist." So Fiona has taken to calling herself "the artist."
I love watching her paint. She is variously intent, gentle, observant, contemplative, quizzical, bold -- and always fully engaged. Creativity at its finest.