All kids draw and it's wonderful to see how they interpret and view the world around them through their drawings. There's nothing like seeing a child with that creative sparkle and excitement in their eyes as they show you their latest drawing and describe what it's about. More often than not, I'm amazed at their beautiful imagery and how succinctly they can portray a scene, or what they are feeling.
Whilst children are prolific drawers in their early years, when they reach 10 to 12 years old, many stop. Why?
Around 10 to 12 years in age, children's perceptions become more complex and they have an expectation about how their drawings and images should look—they should look 'realistic' (in their view - and many adults often feel the same way). So they embark on trying to make their drawings as realistic as possible, and when they don't quite 'turn out right' they believe they have failed. The second reason they stop drawing is because of remarks/comments from others, whether it be a parent, teacher, adult or siblings and even other kids. One single sarcastic or off-hand comment about their art from someone can, and does, have a detrimental affect on a child's will and desire to continue drawing. Those children who receive positive feedback about their art will continue to grow and learn new techniques, which in turn enable them to improve and develop as young artists. They are the ones who will keep drawing.
Matt White - 9 years of age
One child who displays an amazing artistic talent is young Matty White. At only nine years of age, he is already displaying a talent well beyond his years. He loves to paint and his works of art have a wonderful expressionism about them, of which many adult artists would be jealous (including me!). Matty draws and paints often, and with each new work of art he produces, he gets better and better. With art and drawing, it is one of those activities where the more you do it, the better you get.
Matty also has limitless encouragement and support from his parents, Neil and Shirlene, who continue to foster his love of art by exposing him to galleries, other artists, and classes. As a result, his talent is flourishing! His mum Shirlene is his unofficial 'manager' and is responsible for running around and packaging up Matty's work to send to buyers interstate. As proud parents, they often post photos of his work on their Facebook pages and are inundated with positive comments, praise, and orders from admirers far and wide. With this continued support, Matty is sure to go a long way in the art world. I look forward to one day seeing his name as an Archibald Prize winner.
Matty is also an artist with a conscience - his beautiful painting of a cow (above) has been donated to Drought Angels who help Aussie farmers in need - because every bit helps . A very worthy cause and I'm sure they will love it.
Good luck in your artistic pursuits Matty - we love your work and amazing talent! And DON'T STOP drawing.