Monday, March 26, 2012


Play has a bad reputation. It is seen as a waste of time. It is not. Play is a vital and necessary part of any intelligent creature’s life. The higher the intelligence the more important play is.
Pumpkin in Coffee

For most intelligent creatures play is an essential part of learning. It is a way of exploring both the limits of our environment and ourselves.

Play is an essential part of art. We need to explore both our media (materials) and our own creativity. Play is how we do it. We need to understand just what the art material can and cannot do, and how to combine them to get the results we want. Most people call this experimentation. And it is. But it does not have to be dull.

Bags of Candy
Take the color chart.


Work, right? Well yes, but that does not mean it cannot be fun. And should be. Doing both color charts and value charts should engage us. They should not be simple chores assigned by an evil task-master (art teacher). These charts should be how we come to understand and love our material.

Yes they are serious learning exercises, but more than that. We need to come to an understanding of just what is color, hue, tone. We need to play with the paints/materials to learn this.

Home Made Color Wheel


  1. Yes I enjoyed looking and reading your page, and I whole heartedly agree with you in playing to learn it is fun, if it wasn't fun I wouldn't be an artist now, we need arts and hobbies in our lives, it's not only that it gives us something to do with our time, keeps the brain active, painting take me into another world which is so peacefull and beautiful.Freda Gudopp

  2. Good for you, Freda. We all need this "play" it is not unimportant but vital to our wellbeing as humans.

  3. Sometimes that play can be scary!


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