A few years back when my first born Maya who is now 6 years old was born, I started on a journey to include more “Perfectly Imperfect Art” experiences into our daily lives. Then by the time my second daughter Cianna who is now 3 and my third Mattea who is 2 came along, it became more of a necessity for my mind and soul to stay sane…
You see some people do yoga to relax, others exercise or even garden, for me, I art with my kids! Art speaks the language of my soul, it calms my nerves and helps me let go of all those daily anxieties that being a mom comes with. You see, truth be told I have not found adjusting to parenting as easy as those magazines, books and some moms I know make it look. I am that mom who is always searching for lost keys, found in my pocket after frantically searching everywhere, late no matter how early I leave the house, wondering where in the diaper bag my wallet or the dummy is. I am constantly wondering if I am doing things right, whether it was breast feeding, milestones, routines, or just actually feeding the children.
You name it, I have worried about it or worse phoned or visited specialists about it. The only time I find I am relaxed is when I do something creative with my kids, we don’t worry about tidying up, whether it’s the right way, or how quickly it was done. We just enjoy and let be.
It’s difficult to explain because it’s not what it looks like but rather what it does, often when people see us painting they say “but isn’t all that mess stressful, the tidying up must be terrible?” But if they knew how much it feeds my soul they would know the mess is definitely worth it.
By this point I can already hear you saying “what on earth is this Perfectly Imperfect Art you on about?”.
Perfectly Imperfect art or otherwise known as process art is art that focuses on the process or creative journey rather than as a deliverable end product. This kind of art celebrates the experience of discovery. For us it is child centred and child directed, I simply set out invitations for the girls to paint or explore and then allow them to make decisions and try new things. It is time that we spend as a family not worrying if the painting will be perfect or if it looks beautiful, but rather time spent living in the moment and enjoying our journey.
Because there is no “right” way it should look, the fear of them making mistakes is removed and they enjoy making new discoveries. As a mom it gives me time to step back from my mom role and truly enjoy bonding with my kids. To have that time to see how their mind works and what ideas lie inside of them and see their confidence grow with each new project is truly magical.
As a family, doing projects together helps us communicate better, learn to share and make decisions together. We all have our different styles and ways of doing things but through these projects we learn to appreciate our differences. For my kids I feel it’s particularly important to have time to indulge in process art because I feel it fosters so many positive attributes.
You see I want my girls not necessarily to be artists but to rather think like artists! I want them to be confident and try new things, to not be afraid of making mistakes but rather to learn from them, to take risks, to think outside the box, to use their imagination and to enjoy their journey to be happy!
These are the exact reasons why I purposely seek to put creative invitations in our lives for them and for me. Einstein put it so beautifully when he said “I’m enough of an artist to draw freely on my imagination, which I think is more important than knowledge. Knowledge is limited. Imagination encircles the world.”
I have seen the benefits of process art in our family and this is why my whole mom philosophy is centred around the ideology of “Perfectly Imperfect”. There are some days when I am feeling down about life and wondering if I am enough, then we paint and I look at the “Mini Masterpieces” my girls create and I am reminded that even in imperfection there is always something perfect. It’s a great reminder for me to not focus on always trying to be perfect but rather to enjoy the journey and find my version of perfection in my imperfect life.
There are lots of different activities that I have done with the girls but this is one of my all time favourites as a family activity, we even have our mural hanging up on our wall in our house!
It’s such a stunning mural to do as a family because even if you have kids of different ages or if you are scared to paint or don’t know where to start, all it needs is for you to start with just a dot and then build on that. Just one small dot and then as a family keep adding more circles and dots and before you know it you’ll have a Mini Masterpiece right before your eyes.
I hope this will inspire you to let go of the ideals of perfection and learn to enjoy and see all the beauty imperfection holds.
Have Fun letting go!
For the Collaborative Circle Mural You will need:
– Large paper/canvas material
– Paint (we use liquid tempera as it washes off easily with kids)Bowls for paint
– Paint brushes
– Masking tape to hold paper/material down
– Different circular objects to print with
– Optional: Different circle objects to stick on
– Glue if you are sticking.
How to Paint A Collaborative Circle Mural:
– Stick the paper onto a surface with masking tape so that the paper is secure whilst painting.
– Put different colour paints in each bowl, with paint brushes and different objects to print with.
– Explain that the rules of this project are that you may not destroy someone else’s circle, but you may only add more detail to a circle..
– Paint circles, print circles and stick circles.. Have fun exploring and choose which ever method you like…
– Use as many or as little colours like…
– Have Fun..!!!!!
The results are stunning and Perfectly Imperfect…
Marcia Sissing is firstly a wife and mother of 3 adorable little girls. She studied education (B-Ed in foundation phase) and specialised in special needs before becoming a SAHM when her eldest daughter was born.
Marcia’s blog is her gift to them… her dream is for them to see how much they inspired her to be a better “me’..!!
You can find Marcia over on Mini Matisse Diaries