Painter in Toddler.
Painting is a non-verbal form of communication which leave a trail of pigmented visual
lines. Plato would call it a form of imitation. Painting is the reproduction of experiences
of what individuals feel, see, hear, taste and smell. These senses are identified as
energies used to determine colours, the direction of strokes and form for painting. The
colours used in painting are often associated with mood, behaviour, intention, etc.
Certain colours stimulate certain responses from nerve-sense system which produce
emotions and these colours get associated with a certain feel like feeling the blues or
seeing red. (Helmholtz, Physiological Optics, 1867).
Painting is a great way to keep your toddlers creatively engaged. Toddlers start showing
interest in art when they are eight months old. After they get familiar with the basic
idea, they experience different stages of art development. These stages reflect the
stages of the child’s development. In stage one, the child is experimenting with colours,
strokes, and mediums of painting. The development of motor skills paves way for the
second stage, where the toddler has greater control over his movements which help him
make circular patterns and straight lines. In the third stage, toddlers are able to combine
these lines and circles to create and draw denotative objects like stickman, sun, etc.
Understanding and materialising connotative ideas of drawn objects betide later with
Creative art like drawing and painting renders emotional satisfaction in toddlers. This
satisfaction comes from the fact that, while drawing or painting, a toddler has full
control over his work of art. He takes autonomous decisions where he can pick his own
style, colours, shapes, and decide when the painting is complete. Each of these aspects
give toddlers the opportunity to freely express what they are thinking and feeling,
consequently building their self-esteem. (Schirrmacher, 1998)
Painting and drawing aids in the development of Hand Eye coordination. By the age of
three they have reached a benchmark in hand eye and coordination, when they are able
to throw a ball in a specific direction or make strokes as they desire. Painting enhances
fine motor skills and hastens development of Hand Eye coordination.
“The first writing of the human being was drawing, not writing”. (Marjane Satrapi)
Languages were born out of symbols which grew out of drawing made by our ancestors.
Drawing and painting is the foundation of words, letters, symbols. Toddlers are taught to
draw alphabets which slowly conjure to words, sentences, paragraphs, etc. Ergo,
creative art is the basis of literature.
Parents must cultivate the habit of drawing and painting in toddlers. Introduce them to
different textures, shapes and figures. Finger painting is a great sensory experience and
a great way to direct your child’s interest towards painting. Other mediums of painting
can include cut vegetables and fruits, leaves, etc.
As children grow old, their perception and representation of art changes. They are often
restricted to a certain type of drawing; writing letters and words. This could prove to be
harmful as it restricts their ability to think and create outside the box. Drawing is an
interplay of various sources and must always be encouraged. (Arnheim, 1954).
Drawing and Painting: Children and visual representations. Author: John Matthews