Inspiration goes both ways…

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I love to see these two girls of mine interacting. They play the funniest made-up games and give the sweetest hugs (and know how to push each other's buttons, but we won't go into that…). They also inspire each other, whether in play or art. Usually it's Daphne who is learning from and emulating Maia, but the inspiration goes both ways.

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Daphne has been obsessed with scissors lately (thanks, Marin!) and has been spending a lot of time cutting bits of construction paper over the last few days. (Note: I periodically show her how to hold the scissors most effectively, but then she goes back to holding them any which way.)

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Maia has caught the paper cutting bug and has been cutting little bits of paper alongside her sister.

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And then using all her colorful paper bits to make collages.

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I love how she glued her paper shapes to the white paper then went to find a large piece of black posterboard to continue the piece.

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And here she drew a spiral then began filling it in by creating a pattern within the lines.

Daphne started doing some collaging as well, because Maia was, but soon went back to her very important work of learning how to cut. I think I'll try letting her cut playdough snakes today…

How about your kids? Do they inspire each other artistically? Or, if you have an only, does he seem inspired by the art that his friends make?

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  1. Dena says

    We love collage but I have been doing all the cutting.
    So, scissors, I just bought some for my daughter Naomi who just turned 2 and she is having a hard time. I did buy the plastic ones from M&D and wonder if I should have gotten something else. Any thoughts?

  2. liisa says

    Yes, I was excited this weekend when my 5 year old abandoned her idea of painting rocks to look exactly like ladybugs and just mixed colors on the rocks after seeing my 2 year old do it. She was starting to get frustrated that they weren’t turning out as she would have liked…but once she mixed the paints and explored new colors she had fun…whew, 2 year old to the rescue. Loved the post today, thanks!

  3. says

    My twins, at 3.5yrs are, yes, obsessed with cutting paper! It gets everywhere, and you just clean it up then turn around and there’s more. We have yet to figure out what to do with all the leftover bits. I’ll try to encourage the collage idea. Thanks. :)

  4. says

    I have three girls and the two younger usually copy whatever art the oldest is doing, although sometimes it goes the other way. Right now my oldest (seven) is very into making puppets, so everyone is having fun with that. Their favorite right now is the simple kind you can make with brown paper lunch sacks.

  5. says

    I think that just goes with the territory. Scissors are hard to master and two is young for it. Daphne is about to turn two and scissors are hard for her. But she is determined. They get better at as they get older of course. Some ideas:
    Cut a long skinny strip of paper and let her cut pieces off of it.
    Hold the paper for her while she cuts (she may need both hands for the scissors).
    Roll out a skinny playdough snake and let her use the scissors to cut pieces off it.

  6. says

    Maybe create a paper pieces box — all the cut pieces go into it and when you’re ready to make a collage you already have what you need! You can do this with glue on paper of course, but also on contact paper…

  7. lucille says

    Your girls are adorable. I’m curious, does your daughter’s school offer art class? We haven’t had art in my county for over 13 years and I try to intergrate it into the day as much as possible. Do you know of a good curriculum for art at the kindergarten level?

  8. says

    My littlest one is only 7 weeks, so he isn’t making any art…yet! But, as an artist, it is really fun to get inspired myself by my 2 year old!! We have a lot of fun making art together, and it’s fun for me to have “no pressure” art-making sessions where I can just play with materials like he does. Thanks for all the great project ideas!

  9. says

    This is great! I would say my children inspire each other in many, many ways, but so far the fine-motor skill type art projects is not always one of them. My older child is very focused on fine motor activities and is very good at them. And my younger child is very focused on gross motor skills activities and tends to give up more easily on fine motor skills. This isn’t age; it’s how my two girls have been their whole lives.
    So I’ve noticed that my younger daughter sometimes gets discouraged when her projects don’t look like her sister’s, or she just gets up from the table very quickly. I’m hoping to figure out some ways to solve this in an unobtrusive, discreet way.

  10. says

    Not only did I find my wee ones inspired each other, they often inspired me! I’ve made many projects over the years that my inspiration came from them. Children are born thinking outside the box. As adults, we often get narrowed minded in our approach. They remind us that the sky is the limit :)

  11. Dena says

    Thanks so much for the advice. I feel very fortunate that my daughter is the same age as Daphne as I never know if what I am trying is too difficult or not.
    You are my go to art blog, thanks again!