So, my youngest is eight years old. He can be absolutely full of the gimmes and the I-wants. If you have kids, you know what I mean.
Every time he starts asking for something, or more of something, or something else, or whatever his fascination is that moment … I tell him (what I told my two older kids), you need to get a job and make your own money. I also point out to him all the kids online that I have read about, seen, supporting or just been amazed by who have done just that…created a job of their own for themselves and who are making money at that job. I have shown him kids that cook and bake, kids that paint, kids that sew, kids that crochet, kids that knit, kids that mow lawns…walk dogs…water plants…sharpen knives…make knives…write stories…write stories and draw artwork for comic books… create their own video games…and the list goes on and on…
It’s the same thing I have always done. Create your own life your own way. Work for yourself. Get started. I will help in every way I can.
Well, mostly, that has gone in one child’s ears and out the other child’s ears…of three children, I finally have one that has been hearing me…other than his whole idea to supply the world with cool sticks because he loves sticks…I have started to paint again. Not like I did before. I am immersing myself in an organic abstract space and just having fun. Well, the first canvas I brought out…the boy saw…and he had to help me paint. Which is fine at that stage–beginning layers will end up covered up most of the time. No big deal. Plus, it’s abstract and random–what could he possible hurt? On the canvas? Right?
Well, he threw down paint like a pro…and then the colors started to turn muddy and I told him we had to stop for the day and let it dry. I had given him two rules: no black paint and no brown paint. If things started to turn muddy, or brown, or black…we would stop and let everything dry completely before continuing on. He can make mud so fast my head spins, I tell you. I let him…it’s a rosy shade of mud right now…but he puts paint on thick and so there is a lot of texture going on…which is what I am after. So, perfect.
Except that five, ten minutes of painting (a 30-inch by 30-inch canvas) just was not enough for him. I pulled out two-eight-inch by ten-inch canvases…and let him go to town. Then he needed another two of the same size canvas. Well, that took another 10 minutes. Those four canvases are all his own. He is saying he is using the ‘rules’ I taught him…like using the end of your paintbrush to make marks in wet paint, like making patterns, drawing lines and circles or both, that sort of thing. He is still also working with me on our collaborative pieces. Once we are all done and we seal our work, we are going to sell our paintings.
Here’s why I love him. We are going to sell our paintings, he says, because our art is so beautiful people will have to buy it because it makes them happy…and we are selling our paintings because he, I mean we, need the money. Why does he need the money? Video games…Pokemon plushes…balloons…French fries…the usual…ya know.
So, since i can’t beat him, I am joining him. At least we all go mad here together.