Where the inside of my mind leaks onto the screen.

Monday, November 16, 2015


Several different Jake attempts
I sat beside Dylan at a loss for how to help as he hung his head heavily in deep despair.  Strewn around him lay several attempts at drawing Jake, the most recent of which had caused him to declare, "This looks nothing like him," before taking his forlorn pose at the table.  Somehow, his plans to draw a book about Jake had taken a turn for the worst, and I knew better than to think that my high praise of his drawings would do anything to change his own critical eye.

"Should we call Aunt Michelle?" I asked.  "Maybe if she came over to draw a picture of Jake, you could try to draw one like hers."  It was the only idea I had, and I was pleased when he agreed. 

Artists at work
"What part of his drawing is he upset about?" she asked over the phone. 

"I don't know.  He just says they look nothing like him, and he is really upset."  I added details about the pile of discarded Jakes all over my table.  "There must be six attempts here, and he isn't happy with any of them.  Is there any way you can come over?" 

Well, Aunt Michelle came to the rescue, and the pair got straight to work.  Jake even got in on the fun, posing for his portrait.  I had to laugh when Michelle started criticizing her own work, erasing a too-long neck.  "I think it looks perfect," Dylan said.  "It is just right."  But Michelle pointed out that he likely gets his perfectionism from her and proceeded to work on the proportions. 

Michelle's quick sketch
They studied the dog, trying to get his spots in just the right places.  And Dylan, usually stingy with his compliments, pronounced the final product to be "so good."

And then he realized his kindergarten motor skills wouldn't be able to accomplish the detail.  "I'll never be able to draw it like that," he complained, back to his dejected square one. 

This time, I knew what to do.  I taught him how to trace Michelle's version onto his own piece of paper.  It was like magic.  He was thrilled to be able to get the basic shape right using the guide and then color it on his own.

Later, in speedy and high-pitched tones, he told his brothers all about his process. 

"Are you satisfied?" Adam asked.

"No!  I'm not SAD!  I'm happy!" he answered.

Kirk and I giggled silently while Adam carefully tried the question again.

"No, Dylan... are you sat-is-fied?"

"I don't even know what that means."

Finally sad-isfied


KHALES said...