My visitors today

Thursday 19 July 2012

Oh what fun it is to paint!

End of day one!

What a find!

A long time ago I was in the German equivalent of a pound-shop. I went there with the hope that I would find some canvases going cheap. I was lucky and I soon had my bike laden with a score of them in all shapes and sizes. Oh, how I wished I had had my trailer with me, I could have bought even more.

While I was walking down the aisles in the shop I suddenly realised what an amazing selection of brushes and mops there was available, in all shapes and sizes to and all for just a few cents each. Most of them were meant to be used for cleaning, washing and cooking, none of them for painting, but nevertheless I soon had a collection on my bike too. I had also found a roller that I think was originally meant for collecting fluff from dark-coloured clothing. You can see from our photographs that it is now used for orange paint!

Summer’s coming

It is almost the summer holidays and our after school group will only be with us for another two weeks before the children all venture off on their various holidays and we, the conductors, will be enjoying all sorts of different work.

We had two hot muggy afternoons this week and we knew that the children would arrive exhausted, especially those who had sport’s day at school on one morning.

It was time to get out the paints

We have a wonderful cleaning lady and another wonderful lady working in the office, who had both given me stacks of old white tablecloths. One of the mums had recently arrived with arms full of pots of coloured emulsion and, put together with my array of weird and wonderful brushes, we had the beginnings of an amazing work of art!

It all took just five minutes to prepare.

I was especially grateful that we had not thrown out the packaging for our second big blue mat when it arrived a few months ago. This huge piece of plastic helped to protect the floor just a little bit, but with Little Princess going at it like a maniac with a shower sponge on the end of a long plastic stick I was still at work long after the children were at home, scrubbing the floors at least five metres away from the painting!

Look out for low-flying paint!

Spontaneity all round

I love doing these huge art projects with the children who come into their element and always show us so spontaneously how much they have learnt over the past months.

One little boy was trying very hard to stay in a knee-stand just long enough to dangle the newspaper-stuffed fingers of a bath-time glove in the middle of the picture. Off course we made sure with lots of encouragement and a little help that he made it.

There was also the thirteen-year-old who said –

‘Susie, do you really think that I am going to paint with a toilet brush?’

'This is fun!'

'Boom coming over!'

'Its that toilet brush again!'

I reassured her that it was clean and that she really should give it a go as the pattern looked like summer flowers in a meadow.

'A meadow with flowers'

I heard my colleague tittering to herself in the background as she worked with some other children, when she heard the same teenager say, just minutes later –

‘Susie, you do have some brilliant ideas.’

Even if I say so myself, yes, this really was one of my better ideas and the children had a very jolly time and made some lovely meadow-flower patterns on the cloth!

'All getting stuck in to some arty-action!'

'Jolly Prof. inventing his own techniques!'

'And no one minded about who painted where'

'Look out! Low-flying paint coming over once more. This time its red!'

Today the children asked me what this huge work of art is going to be. I actually had to admit that I had not thought of it being anymore than an “arty action”, but now of course we will have great discussions about what we will produce with it.

Eventually we will decide whether our creation will be hung on our wall, donated to one of the offices that have greater expanses to cover, cut up to make cushion covers for the group, used as a tablecloth for festive occasions, or made into a big cuddly toy!

The answer, when found, will of course be published here.

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