See My Work with Patty Lakinsmith for the ISGB/Bead and Button Convergence Exhibit

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Teach Them While They're Young!

Well, it's been an exciting week around the Smith household! A visit with my son and granddaughter always has me hopping! Now I know why we have kids when we're young! We "old folks" just don't have the energy level that is required with an "almost" four year old!

The wonderful thing about all that energy is that they have such inquiring minds! It's the best time to teach them! And of course, I did my best to introduce art....coloring books, stickers, and....Studio time!

During their stay, I had a couple of custom orders to finish up. My little angel, Amaya, was full of curiosity about the room that was "off limits", so I set up a little table, far from the tools and other "dangerous, don't touch" stuff, and gave her some rings with prongs I had made and a box of lampwork beads. She was so excited to be creating and her hand/eye coordination was right on! She sat there, talking a mile a minute about her creations as she fitted bead after bead onto the ring prongs. I was facinated and thrilled! How better to fuel her curiosity about what Nana makes, and start her off in the art world.

She asked about colors and wanted to know how the beads were made. I almost Skyped my friend, Patty Lakinsmith, the maker of all those wonderful beads Amaya was using, to explain the process, but didn't want to bother her and wasn't sure Amaya would really understand anyway. However, I need to mention that her favorite beads were the lil meanies that Patty makes. She thought the teeth and tongue sticking out were funny, and understood they were glass and would break if dropped on my concrete studio floor.

I read a lot of artist bios and one thing always strikes me as infinitely important. Many learned their trade or developed their interest at a very young age, at a grandparent's knee or another adult mentor who was wise enough to develop a young person's curiosity about the art. As an artist, not just a grandmother, I feel an obligation to carry that forward at every opportunity. Art needs to be cultivated and nurtured at all ages and when better than when they're young and full of questions and open to new things???

Tah Dah! The finished product! (And look at her smile!)

Ok, then...time to get back to the studio, though it'll be a little lonely now!


1 comment:

Patty said...

You're a wonderful grandmother, Cyndie! What great pleasure she will take someday as a young woman to see these photos. And who knows, she may actually become an artist too!

It's striking that she asked how the beads were made, as opposed to assuming that they just come from a store somewhere. She's off to a great start!

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