The Inherently Creative Family
Summertime is a perfect chance to get creative together. Here are some ideas for engaging the artist in every family member.
All individuals are inherently creative. But we typically reserve the title of “Artist” as a sacred one for which only specially anointed individuals are worthy. However, our humanness makes us all creative. My son, E, has no interest in initiating drawing on his own. Although when there is drawing time at school and all of the other children are involved, he will create fascinating pictures that give me insights into his thoughts and feelings.
This week his teacher asked each student to do a sketch. His depiction of “what I did over spring break” was a picture of the Earth as viewed from the moon with our family faces in orbit. We had gone to the Neil Armstrong Space Museum and out of the many other activities of the past week, that is what he chose to draw. He often brings home drawings and we discuss what they mean to him. He proudly displays them on our refrigerator and becomes an “Artist” each time.
Art for the purpose of the expression of feelings has been a central theme for centuries. The famous painter, Rothko (1903-1970) created simple rectangles of color with the expressed purpose of evoking raw emotion in the viewer. Art is also used to tell stories and define cultural experiences. Picasso painted Guernica, perhaps his most well-known, as an anti-war reaction to the Nazi bombing during the Spanish Civil War. And art has been used effectively to heal. Art therapy has been promoted healing since the 1940s. There is research to suggest that art therapy has had a healing influence on cancer patients and children with asthma.2 “Art making may reduce anxiety and stress reactions…”3
Not only can the arts heal but they can also connect us to one another as we get to know the deeper parts of who we are. In our busy family lives, connecting on an intimate level can become difficult as we attend to the obligations of day to day life. But art can be used as a tool for bringing families together, building self-awareness and self-confidence, dealing with intense emotions, exploring perceptions of the world or even envisioning the future. Read full post.