“We are all born artists. Almost everything kids do is art.” – Young-ha-Kim
I live with the best 1st grade teacher there is. And, according to her, she has the best 1st grade class there is. Today, I had her ask her kids one simply, yet wildly complex question.
“What is art?”
She wrote down their answers…word for word. They had some pretty funny (and, surprisingly, enlightening) things to say.
- Art is when I play with my friends.
- Art is writing about a dog.
- Art is fun.
- Art is coloring
- Art is when you write something.
- Art is doing pictures.
- Art is when you write stories, then paint them.
- Art is painting.
- Art is drawing on an easel.
- Art is cool
- Art is writing sentences, then coloring them.
- Art is if you draw a book.
- Art is singing.
- Art is we can write songs.
- Art is painting a butterfly.
- Art is when you draw a very good picture.
- Art is happy.
I like their answers because they’re all right. As an artist, anything can be your canvas. When you’re a child, it is; the kitchen table, the couch, your own hair. The trouble is maintaining that angle as an adult. It’s hard to protect that wild curiosity and creativity from being bombarded with practicality.
As Pablo Picasso once said, “All children are artists. The problem is how to remain an artist once you grow up.”
How do you stay creative in a world that pushes us to be practical and realistic? Maybe you should ask a six year old. Maybe it’s simply remembering that art IS happy.