Monday, September 29, 2014

creating with a kid


I have my annual You, Me and the Sea Retreat in my studio next week and recently I painted a fun ocean themed mural that will serve as a backdrop for group photos. I filmed the entire process with a plan to share some tips and insight into working large (I'll save that for later this week) but my experience painting with Lucy by my side was too entertaining not to share! 



Creating with a toddler by your side is NOT for the faint of heart and there are times when it is downright insanity and a big test of my patience. But the practice of allowing Lucy to create, play and go wild while I create is teaching me an incredible lesson in learning to go with the flow (both as a mother and as an artist). Painting while a toddler drips paint all over the floor, then wraps you up in paper towels, then runs around with an umbrella is crazy (and not for everyone) but at the end of the day, IT'S SO MUCH FUN and I want to have fun while I make art!


While it would be easy to exclude Lucy from my art making, I made a decision early on that I wanted to include her as much as possible. Because I made this choice, I've had to change the entire way that I go about making art. Sure, I could leave home everyday for my studio and create by myself (and there are days when I do) but I like to invite her to participate in my projects. Sharing art is a little like sharing my heart with her and while it makes no difference if she ends being an artist, I do want to her to grow up knowing the freedom, confidence and pure joy that come with the creative process.


And as challenging as it is to juggle my own creative process with hers, there is nothing I would change. This time is fleeting and precious and I will gladly take the messes, the short attention span and the insanity that comes when creating with a kid!


You can check out more of our family collaborations HERE

or read more about Life With Lucy HERE


52 comments:

PJsArtFun L said...

That was so much fun to watch!

jabbott said...

Lucy is a beautiful child x

Sarah Shermann said...

That was lovely to watch :-)

Jo Murray said...

Love the video, the concept...AND the mural. SO much fun.

Chloe said...

Aw what a brilliant video!

Benita Joy said...

omg!!! i have a toddler too, and watching you create/play together just made me laugh so much!! isn't it wonderful having a little person to make crazy interruptions to an art project :)

LauraJane:) said...

Glad to see you are in the Practice of what is Most important in a mom's life right now:)
Lucy is very fortunate..and so are you.
Hugs

Kelly said...

So cute! She was totally cracking me up. :)

Julie said...

hahaha she's so cute! I can't wait to do stuff like this with my little one. She already loves coloring so maybe we will try fingerpaints soon

studioGypsy said...

just so beautiful.. xoxo <3

TwinkleToes2day said...

Adorable! Totally adorable! I love Lucy's wrapping you in kitchen towel and that you placed the cup atop your hair. I giggled out loud a few times; Lucy is just so precious. I was very impressed with her colouring the fish within the lines and how she holds a brush is just wonderful. Thank you for sharing such delightful times :o))

Jeanette said...

Alisa! Thanks for sharing, the video was priceless!!! She is adorable and I appreciate the laughs as it was just so, genuine! Good for you to include her and develop our next generation of artists and creators!! Woo hoot!
Best,
Jeanette

ladylyn said...

I wish I was going to be there again this year!

Kim said...

Well that just made my day! Thank you for sharing.

Emma Elliott said...

I think its awesome I involve my two boys as much as I can and have learnt to let go and go with the flow. She's a cutie xxxx

curlygirlpress said...

This is so hilarious to watch (of course paper cups are drums! And paper towels are scarves and head bands!), and you are such an awesome momma.

Catherine Parkinson said...

Been there done that!! It is great fun being creative but hard work cleaning sometimes. I had a mud pit in our last house for the kids that they spent endless hours in. Best thing ever. Creative kids come from creative adults who are unafraid of letting children create with messy things.

Lynette (NZ) said...

<3

Gaia Maria said...

The video had me laughing out loud! It is a clear testament to the wonderful imagination and creativity that children have and I am sure that with your attitude towards including her in your art, she will be able to hold on to that into her adult life.
Plus she's one funny kid, that's obvious!

AlexM said...

ah!ah! Lucy is the best!!! And you are my hero (again!)
She has such great hand-coordination!
Thanks for sharing, it was hilarious and inspiring.

Nicole Hilborn said...

I love this post, and the video!! I learn so much from you, as an artist and as a mom and human <.3

Rosa said...

So funny! I had to laugh at her running around being a kid. But I was also really impressed by how long she could focus when she was painting! Really amazing to get a toddler to stand still for so long at one activity. Thanks for sharing this!

Anonymous said...

So lovely and really funny. I laughed out loud several times Lucy was just so funny. Playing the drums was so cute. She is quite wonderful and so are you for giving this to her. I wish I could have been so patient.
Sara

Se7en said...

Oh Lucy, your little fan club in Cape Town absolutely loved seeing you at work!!! Everyone is crowded round my screen to watch this magic!!!

Michellem said...

What a precious memory and experience for you both!!

Stephanie Ackerman said...

I love you..but I really love lucy, too!!!!!

iris said...

omg, this is soooooo cute :)))

Corrine at sparkledaysstudio.com said...

You have so much patience and that is where the heart comes in. She is a wonderful whirling dervish of cuteness. :)

Stephanie said...

sooo cute!! The mural is good too. :)

susan w said...

Lucy is being given an extraordinary gift. This is what children's experiences need to be. My wish for her is that these opportunities continue to grow. My other wish for her is an option beyond public school. I just left the kindergarten classroom after 26 years because it is no longer a good place for little kids (due to misguided pressures and expectations.) Her comet burns so brightly because her parents are the fuel. You all are an inspiration

alisa burke said...

Awww thanks so much for your comment Susan and not to fear we have some alternative plans for education starting with homeschool during the early years :)

Raine said...

I loved it at the end when you kissed her little feet! I don't know why but I found that very touching. You are such a good mom!

Glenda said...

Exactly!

Vicki Miller said...

I really enjoyed your video, it was like the two of you were dancing. Beautiful, and so was the mural

Denise Cortes said...

Hi, Alisa. I've long been a fan of your blog and I'm always tickled by the similarities of our life as artists/moms (although I'm a mom of six!). Watching the video takes me back to the time when my kids were little -- painting at home with all of them running around was how we did things (and still do!). Its just survival as an artist. We didn't have time to wait until everyone was napping/with a babysitter before we got creative. Some people can't wrap their minds around working on a full scale mural in their living room with a toddler around but it's doable! I know from experience. :)

morningdove said...

i think this is why i loved homeschooling so much. they are very creative and remind us to lighten up. wonderful vid.

Allyson Mandry said...

This was amazing ��

Grace said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Grace said...

I do love watching you paint...but girl I think Lucy stole the show in this video! I kept reminding myself and rewinding it at times to see something you painted cause I was watching Lucy more times than not (the broom was the best bit, ha!). When I quilted way back when I gave my kids fabric that they cut up and glued and stitched and all manner of stuff while I worked. I think it's a matter of not stifling their innate creativity just so we can work unimpeded. Sometimes I would just stop what I was working on just to watch them for a bit. The other day my now 24 yr old AF son called to tell me about an art project he's going to tackle for his apt wall....this from a guy who does no art. Those moments playing on the floor while I worked is now paying off. Love it!

Oooh, and thanks for the tips on working large.

Anonymous said...

This is really inspiring! And beautiful! I love reading your Blog. It's very inspiring to learn about all your creative adventures and the adventures wiht you family. The Photo's you post on your Blog and on Instagram are really beautiful. Thank you for sharing, also for all the tips and tutorials. It inspires me to (continue to) be creative. And I love to see how you workt with your lovely daughter.

Mariƫlle

dawn said...

I love this so much!! She is so cute and funny! Your art and patience during this was amazing to see! I couldn't have done it this well, you are doing so well with her.

LOVE your go big tips too, I love going big sometimes, all that space to fill up and have fun with.

Robin Cooper said...

Love the video!!!! What a precious decision you have made. Lucy cracks me up!!

Dana Barbieri said...

That was so incredibly adorable. I love it so much. She is funny and you are so right it will be gone before you know it. Thanks for the smiles this morning.

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Heather said...

Oh my goodness, that is just the cutest thing! What fun! I always include my son in projects and it's been such a joy. Who really cares if the end product is "perfect" you'll always look at what you've done and smile....priceless!

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