Sunday, 25 October 2015

Observations: Workshop at Sapphire Heights

We conducted another  workshop at Sapphire Heights Kandivali on 17th Oct 2015. The participants were few children from the previous workshop plus some new.
Names of children who participated: Jeevika, Aathira, Shreyas, Aadit  
The children were of age from 4 to 10 years. 

We conducted following activities:
Before we started with the activities we showed them an interesting video named "La Linea" (“The Line") which is an Italian Cartoon series showing a character (drawn as a single outline) and his encounters with object/adventures as a part of infinite line on which he walks and he himself is a part of that single line. What is brilliant about the video is the expression of the creativity through something so simple as just a line. We wanted the children to know that creativity can be expressed with something as simple as a line.  
Character from La Linea, Courtesy: Wikipedia
Self Portrait
The Self Portrait is a depiction of your own self. Aathira knew what a portrait is and she explained “when the picture of face is drawn till the shoulders”. We asked them about self portrait and how they can create their own picture. There were some thought-provoking answers which left us astonished as to how innovatively these children can think.
E.g Aathira said, by remembering about your features from your memory, one can do a self portrait.
Shreyas’s answer was unique: he said, we should paint all over face, our body and press ourselves on the paper.
Actually what he said was such an original thought because he has never heard anything about artists and their experiments. When he said it, I remembered that I have read something similar to his idea somewhere, After recollecting and searching where I had read about it, I found out that : although not exactly in the same context of self portrait but the similar idea has been executed by one of the Gutai Artist: Shimamoto Shozo, check out this link to see this experiment.

After which we introduced them to the concept of symbolic self portrait. A symbolic self portrait is a depiction of all the things that describe you the most. Because you are not just the representation of your face but much more than that and which can be best represented by your liking. Children started painting their own portrait by identifying what they like. 
Self Portrait: Aadit,Jeevika,Aathira
Jeevika’s self portrait showed flowers and it showed that she loved shades of blue the most. Her entire palette was full of blue colour.

Aathira created a self portrait depicting her school houses. And the symbols for each of the houses.
Shreyas’s self portrait depicted space containing Sun, Earth, Mars and a spacecraft. He also created distinguishing representations of stars and comets. He explained about his self-portrait that he loves space and wants to be an astronaut.
Aadit said he loves cars, so he depicted one. His representation of a car is unique, it has all the four wheels side by side.

Still Life
Artist Paul Cezanne is a master of creative still life. He used day to day objects like apples, oranges, vases etc. as an inspiration and painted them in his unique style creating thick brush strokes. Most important point of his still life paintings was : not copying or imitating the object. He wrote about the still life that “it is realizing one’s sensations”.
We introduced the concept of still life and briefly told about artist Paul Cezanne. Aathira already  knew a bit about still life. She told about her understanding of the concept to others:  “Still life is a painting of objects that can remail still and also have life, like fruits, flowers etc”. However she discarded trees and plants from still life as plants sway with wind.
Shreyas was curious whether stars and planets can be painted as a still life.
Children were told to paint the still life by looking at the objects arranged and simply take it as an inspiration to paint it. They were also encouraged to not copy it as it is, not represent it as it is.
Here are the results of painting:

Still Life: Top Row: Shreyas,Jeevika  Bottom Row: Aathira, Aadit
Exquisite Drawing
This is a collaborative activity where each participant has to contribute his share to a painting. We introduced this concept to the children by showing them a small example of a sentence creation using collaboration. Each one was given a piece of paper and on it, either noun, verb, adjective or an object/animal was to be written in the space allotted (till the marking). After writing it, they were supposed to fold the paper (so that the next person is not able to see it) and pass it on to the next participant. The order in which they were told to write down was in such a way that in the end, an interesting sentence will be constructed by it. The sentences thus constructed can be amusing as well as bizarre.
As we started this example game, children enjoyed it a lot, and interesting sentences were constructed: 
"Vedantika acting red toys"
"Crowd running red rabbit"
"Lion dancing kind car"
"Mumbai running pretty rabbit"

Then children were given drawing papers and were told to repeat the same activity but this time with drawing. It produced some amazing results.
Exquisite Drawing: Top row:Aathira, Aadit Bottom Row: Jeevika, Shreyas

Overall, the workshop gave some thought provoking insights for us as well as the children :)

1 comment:

  1. Great going.....this whole concept of teaching kids in such a unique manner is just amazing and so commendable! Keep it up gang :)Best wishes -Jessica aunty.