Monday, August 6, 2012

wonders in watercolor

diana took a week-long class in watercolor technique with miss becky from lab rat academy.

"untitled"

"twin moon"

 she said learning to blend the colors was challenging.
but the next exercise was easier.  i think she's getting the hang of this.
still life looks good enough to eat.  she did this by blending only three colors.  i especially love the hint of the shadow.  don't know if my novice photography skills adequately portray what she created.
"apple"
the addition of geometric shapes provided interest.
"bubbles"

"diamond"
and the final culmination of her skills learned in the class - not quite finished:
"rainy day"
i asked diana (as i do whenever she takes a class - it's part of me checking in and processing what she's learning) what she thought of her teacher and of her learning experience.  she really, really liked that miss becky sat down and did the art with her.  it wasn't about a teacher providing a lecture or demonstration and then watching the student and providing feedback.  diana's lessons were full of teacher and student sitting together, working on their art side-by-side (or across from each other), able to ask and answer questions as they felt them come up.  each of them had a product of their work by the end of the session.  they were in the flow together.

there are so many reasons i can speculate upon that explain why this was such a good experience for diana.  teacher knowledge of, skill in, and enthusiasm for both the subject matter and in teaching it.  compatibility of the teacher and student.  student interest level and desire to learn.  appropriate tools and materials for the exercises.

i have little doubt that the extremely small class size was a factor, too.  it felt like diana had a private tutor.  like in her earliest session at morley's swim school this summer or in her piano lessons, having one-on-one interaction with an experienced facilitator allows for the opportunity for fine-tuned tailoring of the session to meet the student at his/her level and capability.  it also creates an atmosphere and sets an environment that minimizes distraction and focuses attention and effort.  and it's non-competitive, which i believe is extremely important for the psyche of my children's minds when they are building and exercising a new skill.  yes, it's demanding.  yes, it's expensive.  yes, it can be difficult to find such an opportunity.  the results, though, both short-term and long-term, are worth it for us.

oh, and something else we really, really like about miss becky: she's got a snake.  a corn snake named copper.  and we got to hold him.  heaven!  thanks, miss becky!


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