2009-08-08 / Top News

Children Complete Variety of Projects for Drop In and Draw Program

By Kerri Jo Molitor

Max Darr, from Cheboygan but staying at the Geary House for six weeks, draws a sketch at the youth program of Drop In and Draw Thursday, July 30, at 1 p.m. Other children finish their drawings at the table to his right. Max Darr, from Cheboygan but staying at the Geary House for six weeks, draws a sketch at the youth program of Drop In and Draw Thursday, July 30, at 1 p.m. Other children finish their drawings at the table to his right. Encouraging children in their artistic abilities was the purpose of the youth program, Drop In and Draw. The program saw a lot of interest, with about 12 to 15 children attending each week. Some of the youngsters lived on the Island and some came from the mainland.

The two supervisors, Anna Browning and Mary McWatters, didn't treat the course as a structured class, but as a free hour where the children could explore their creative side. They did give the children small hints to keep in mind as they draw, such as to draw with lighter lines so the paper isn't ruined. When the children asked for it, though, they were more than willing to lend a helping hand.

Every class started with what is called a "gesture drawing." One of the children posed in front of the class while the others did their best to capture the likeness. The gesture drawing was to warm the children up before turning to the main project of the day.

The projects have varied over the weeks, ranging from still life paintings to creating pop-up cartoons. On the last day of the program, the children were invited to make magnets.

The magnets would display a picture they had drawn of any subject. The instructors had set out a few items in case any of the children wished to draw a stilllife, but most chose to draw from their imagination. After they had finished their picture, the art work was glued to the magnet and then lacquered.

The most important part of the program was not to teach the children how to draw correctly, but to motivate them to explore their own individuality as an artist. The difficulty in teaching this with children came when some strife was caused by teasing, but the lesson was learned, nevertheless.

"You can't make fun of art," Ms. Browning told one child who was teased. "Art is everybody's own."

A final adult program of Drop In and Draw will be held at Community Hall Thursday, August 13, from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.

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