I try to work on a summer art project with my son every year or find a local show he/we can submit artwork. There are some really wonderful small galleries here in Sonoma County and a few generous ladies have allowed us to exhibit in their spaces over the last few years.
As my son gets older, it a little tougher to get him on board and excited about committing to a summer-long art project.
Last year, we committed to doing a Summer selfie project and I wrote a little bit about it here and here. The Moleskine journal that houses our drawings is one of my most prized possessions. It has served as a wonderful snapshot of what my kid was like at 12 years old - into his hair, manga + chibi-style drawings, skateboarding, hiking and t-shirts that had something to say emblazoned across them. For me, last summer was a summer of trying new things, getting over myself and just having fun without overthinking it.
I didn't let myself get caught up in the "I can't draw people" loop last year and just went for it. Like he does. My son was very much my teacher last Summer and we mostly had fun on this project. I say mostly because it started to feel like an assignment after awhile (and I guess it was) and we both kind of petered-out near the end. We gave ourselves permission to quit on July 25, 2015 (aka Day 51).
In July of 2015, G had two pieces of his work selected for a group show at Kitty Hawk Gallery - his watercolor "Invisible World" (the rabbit shown leaping in the middle (above) between G + Grace Levine, the gallery owner, talented artist + curator), as well as his "100 Faces of Origami Yoda" installation (below)). He was over the moon. I love how kind and generous fellow artists can be and Grace is definitely the bee's knees.
This year we were a little late to the party with starting our summer art project. We just couldn't land on anything that seemed sustainable with our outside commitments this season, so we both agreed that we would embark on the Summer Selfie Art Journal Project, again.
This is such a simple concept and I hope others can take inspiration and run with this idea.
1. We buy a small Moleskine journal (preferably without lines, but ours was on sale for $5 bucks at our local bookstore and has lines). This size is key in maintaining the practice. I can pop it in my purse and that ensures we always make time for it;
2. I date stamp our pages because, in my next life, I'd like to be a librarian + it helps keep us on track;
3. I glue the pages together, back-to-back, so that any bleed through or line marks don't affect the next day's drawing; and lastly,
4. We draw whatever we want on each of our sides of the journal (mine is on the right this year) and spend no more than 5-10 minutes on each entry.
Let me know if you decide to jump in and play along. I'm using the hashtag #gr8ymomartjournal2016 on my Instagram feed @tammisalas. We're already off to a fun start and I can see that Pokemon GO, manga-inspired eyeballs and happy kid are already shining through as a theme for my kid. I'm in my head a lot this summer, but I'm working my way out.
I'd love to see your creative summer adventures, too! Link or share in the comments.