Wednesday, November 16, 2011

From the HeART

Kevin created a series of paintings a few years back called Knife, Fork and Spoon, given those were the items used to create the art. Often there was a spiral of paints from a center point with great energy emanating from the creation.

Around that time, the movie "Horton Hears a Who" became popular, and Kevin saw his paintings as somehow looking like the "speck" or spore in the movie which Horton would speak to and turned out to have a whole civilization living inside of it.

Wherever we went, Kevin would pick up dandelions or other flowers and speak to them, hoping to hear a response. Sometimes he thought he did. I loved the broader messages of the movie of how we perceive and interact based on what we think we know to be true. I also loved the poetic aspect of Kevin wanting to find and interact with whatever species he might find inside these spores. Somehow it was easier for him to interact with this than other people, yet his desire was a bridge to socialization with other people.

The artwork then became known as the Pollen series - they are quite beautiful and many pieces have been used as thank yous for large donations. Some people have commissioned Pollen pieces. In the photo, Kevin is creating a new Pollen piece called "Speck-tacular." It was used as an auction item for another charity.

The creation process is a great tool for anyone working with children especially those with Autism, ADHD or other processing disorders. As a parent or teacher, you can help by providing the supplies for any creation. We discuss ideas.I help Kevin with his articulation, coaching him on ways to express verbally what he is thinking and planning. Then there is the planning process: what does he want to do; what does he need; is there a theme; do we need to buy anything; can his brother or sister help; will he make a sample first or just dive right in; does he have enough time to finish now or will he need a couple days; who is cleaning up. As he creates, there are other pieces of cognitive processing merging with the creative urges...and it's always interesting.

This art was different in that included a sparkly yarn being glued on for accent. This was a new twist to his earlier pieces. People loved how it turned out. And he knows his piece was used to help another group raise funds.

With children, you can consider their sensory issues and motor planning issues. Use crafts as a way to create patterns in the brain and the body which will help them with other skills they need for daily life. You can use the crafts to reinforce math concepts or science. Your interaction allows for modeling of social skills and communication. Of course, at all times be encouraging...not imposing...this is their creation.

When we tap this part of the brain and being, we help them to grow in more whole person ways than traditional academics. The left brain activities of school require a different processing than these artistic right brain experiences, yet the 2 sides of the brain link and cross, and actually, left brain processes are enhanced by what occurs here.

So, grab some smocks and art supplies, cover your surface, pick your mediums, and simply begin to play and express. Enjoy the heart connection that happens when we create together!