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Painting Jazz

Contemporary artist Rachel Rong, of OneHouse Arts, has created a series of online art lessons for children ages 4-11 years old. In this series, Miss Rachel challenges her students to practice the concept of synesthesia where students can freely paint their own interpretation of the presented music. For each lesson, she introduces a new part of the world to the young artists. 

In this particular lesson, Miss Rachel and her students travel to Riga, Latvia where they study the musical masterpiece titled Millenium Stage by the Latvian Radio Big Band. For about 40 minutes, the young artists intently listen to the music and convey the music onto paper using line, shape, and color. Each student’s perspective is unique and the authenticity of their art shines. Later, Miss Rachel critiques each piece and draws similarities to pieces by master artists. The images are edited by Tori Tateishi, the texts are edited by Cher Yujuico, and the students’ work can be seen on this online gallery.

The first images in the slideshows below are the students artwork and the second images are the pieces by master artists Miss Rachel compares their works to.

Veronica, 6 years old

Veronica was able to talk with me this summer. She has opened up a lot more! I hope she will have a lot to talk about more when we meet in the future. I am good at writing, but I don’t know how to talk. This drawing looks like it is by the sea. Waves, sun, crabs, bubbles... it’s layered and spacious. I want to go to this place and I can imagine myself in her painting. I also thought about what route I would take to get to this world. The fine lines and small details are so beautiful. I want to be able to go to Veronica's world to play. Not only to walk and see the details in the picture, but I want to squat down and play for a while 😂 and watch the sunset. Hahaha. It feels like the sun is above her drawing and the waves in front of the sun are constantly moving! For reference, she can take a look at works by Gia Edzgveradze.

Angella, 7 years old

Angella! I like her personality, she is very outgoing. Although we have only known each other for 4 weeks, I feel that I can talk to her all the time. She is the only student who uses a lot of straight lines and graphic elements to express her feelings. Because of the relationship between the materials, her paintings look very unique. There are several places where she drew with two different colored pens in one hand. Cool idea! Her patterns, graphics, and composition are also very attractive. The 3 circles make the picture very dynamic. At a glance, the viewer was able to tell that she was drawing music. The design of the graphics is very similar to symbols, which makes people want to understand what the artist wanted to show. There are primary and secondary layers, which is a good use of occlusion. It is very three-dimensional. It feels like she can communicate with Kandinsky! It looks so much like the art from the Modernism movement! Paul Klee is a modernist master. Angella’s drawing is similar to his art. 

Alicia, 6 years old

Alicia improved so much during this summer vacation 😂 Every picture she did was amazing! This pattern is very similar to totems from the Mayan culture. The colors are so pretty. It also looks like tribe folk art from Africa. The yellow background in contrast to the purple in front is absolutely amazing 👍. She is very good at using the complementary colors of red and green, yellow and purple, and blue and orange.

Matthew, 8 years old

Matthew’s art piece is different from his brother because he uses more shapes. And the colors are also more vibrant. On the one above, I found a lot of interesting, cartoon-like marks, and I could see that he is inspired by abstract art. The shades of different colors vary quite nicely. He uses the same color, but in dark and light hues. He used oil pastels to add fine lines to the piece and he seems to favor crossed lines. His use of lines is very strong. If it is compared to a specific image, his art looks like Jean-Michel Basquiat’s art pieces.

Taylor, 6 years old

The last time Taylor took my class was June 2019 😂 Haha. It has already been a year. She should begin to practice and play with paint at home. She likes purple now and she has done very well. If she practices and draws more, then she will slowly become bolder and more open. She needs to feel free to express herself. The color and expression of this painting is like Andy Warhol's prints. Overall, it is very comfortable to look at. It allows me to keep watching and the more I look at the painting, the more details I see. The picture is particularly integrated! The 3 squares look like books and are evenly distributed! Really beautiful! The painting is vivid and sincere and I think it can be appreciated by people all the time.

Jolin, 7 years old

Jolin is one of my idols. She is only 6 and a half years old, but she is very thoughtful and particularly brave. Before the pandemic, she was "addicted" to cartoons 😂 and she just wanted to copy them, but she is not the type to draw an exact replica. Because drawing cartoons need proportion, perspective, and spatial understanding, it is very difficult. Cartooning is generally not suitable for children under 9 years old. So we had her focus on drawing while still allowing her to express herself and draw whatever she likes. She also likes to draw and paint so she can follow all of the online lessons. Although she has no patience to complete her homework after class, she can understand all of the class materials. Because she is a bit older now, it is easier for her not to draw cartoons in class. The green color of this painting shows strong contrast. The stroke of the gray circle on the top shows her confidence. The pink next to it is bright and the picture is very similar to a landscape. The color is pure. Haha. She no longer mixes all the colors into brown. The colors she used are reminiscent of  expressionist master Franz Marc

Andrew, 7 years old

This is obviously Jackson Pollock! This project is just to Andrew's taste. The first one has two black parallel lines in the middle and four yellow corners. The purple frame in the second painting completes the picture. Children don’t just mindlessly doodle so he must be thinking! Otherwise, he would not have painted two pictures. The color basis of the two paintings are different. Cool colors on the top one, warm colors on the bottom one. Contrasting the above painting, the lines are more abundant in the second one. If you could frame these paintings, they would look like masterpieces. Haha. 

Timothy, 6 years old
& Jeremiah, 4 years old

After listening to the music, Timothy painted a volcano, a house, the sun, a garden, and grass. The work is completed well. Although it's not an abstract painting, it clearly depicts how he felt while listening to the music. The oil pastels and watercolor work well together. The color contrast is clear and strong. It is most noticeable in the color of the building and windows where he utilizes the 3 primary colors, red, blue, and yellow. The lines are colorful and detailed, which is pleasing to look at. It is a very cute and simple picture. The colors and strokes are very similar to some of David Hockney’s digital drawings.

The second drawing is from his 4 year old brother, Jeremiah. He painted an entire scene with a garden full of people surrounded by a fence. He also clearly depicted the ground and blue sky. The foreground of the painting is successful due to the black and orange watercolor.

Ruian, 6 years old

This painting is very expressive and reflects Ruian’s unique character. It is clear that she loved creating this character. It is very story-like. It is as if they were outside a castle, observing and imagining the future. It gives the audience the opportunity to become children again; to be curious and fantasize about their own stories. The painting style is similar to cartoonist Stephanie McMillan.

Zoe, 7.5 years old

This picture is so clean and refreshing. It seems that Zoe favors vibrant watercolors. The details that she added are very thoughtful and imaginative. I can see a horseshoe, the ocean, clouds, plants, a small tomato monster, and much more. Her lines jump around the page giving it a lot of movement. The bottom of the page is full of warm colors while the top contains more cool colors. In the middle, There is a pink shape that is reminiscent of a carrot. Her drawing as a whole is very healing, rich, and full of varying details. The longer one looks at it, the more interesting it becomes. The strokes are quite loose and it is a very happy, but thoughtful piece. The glowing colors have a similar feel to Paul Cezanne’s work.

Kaitlyn, 8 years old

This feels like outer space! The colors are simple and flat and the shapes are lovely. The large blocks of color and different shapes contrast with the line below it. There are loose and tight lines, volume, and matching colors, which gives it a mature look. It is very similar to the illustrations found in children’s books. It reminds me of the work of Heinz Edelmann who created the comically hallucinogenic landscape of Pepperland as the art director for the 1968 animated Beatles film “Yellow Submarine”.

Elaine, 7 years old

This painting uses a lot of brilliant colors and shapes. There are a lot of fluid organic shapes surrounded by an abundance of small spots. The picture has a natural flow,  but it is not chaotic. The orange shape located in the bottom right corner is very special. The top is fun and enthusiastic. It is as if a lot of little elves are dancing around the page. It is comparable to the work of Karel Appel. Although she uses more concrete shape, Elaine may enjoy some of the shapes and characters of her work.

Ella, 6 years old

The lines and colors are brilliant! The divergent composition unfolds from the green triangle at the center. The picture is very clean with repetitive lines that create a pattern. The red dots at the top of the picture, the purple lines, and the dots on the block of green color elevate the painting. It gives a clear sense of space in the front, middle, and back. It is similar to a picture of a field. With imaginative perspective, the brushwork and repeated lines express a sense of child-like wonder.The black lines towards the bottom middle are reminiscent of a sheet of music, which is perfect for this assignment! The black lines hover over the light background like a mischievous elf. It is as though Paul Klee learned from Ella because their styles are so similar.

Samantha, 6 years old

This is the first painting that Samantha did for my class. It is an abstract painting. This assignment seems to have introduced her to the art of abstraction. It looks like a painting of music notes dancing by the sea. She seems to favor the colors purple and blue. Orange and red are also used quite often. The bottom of the painting contains a line that is comparable to a castle. This painting contains many details  and continuous lines. The big blue circles toward the top are very thoughtful. Based on this painting, Samantha may like the work of Joan Miro.

Emma H, 6 years old

I have loved all of the paintings that Emma has painted this summer! How does she mix these beautiful grays? She uses lines to form large, organic shapes and then paints inside of them. She did not fill the entire space, but rather thoughtfully left some negative space in the background. Some of the colors are muted and comfortable to look at. The gray rectangle and silver circle overlap at the bottom. She also used lines of watercolor, which is an interesting idea! The colors she used seem to be experimental and she was very successful in using them. This is a very complete and thoughtful piece. This piece, although abstract, resembles Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec with its deep colors and large shapes.

Emma C, 7 years old

I loved every drawing by Emma Chen as well. There are more colors and details within the large shapes. I really love the black “eye” shape and purple “exclamation marks” about it. The black line with pick and green star on the bottom resembles an organic natural feeling. Overall, the piece is highly rhythmic and vivid. Looks like the shapes are dancing, yarning for fun, zealous, and enthusiastic space.  This one looks a lot like a Kandinsky painting.

Amy, 6 years old

It looks like Amy painted a princess inside of her house. The mountains are made up of many layers of colors. The 3 potted flowers are so cute and funny. They are truly flowers drawn from music. This painting is lovely and contains similar motifs often seen in children’s drawings.

David, 6 years old

The lines are soft and the colors are muted. I’m really impressed that David can draw such an abstract picture. The yellow line in the shape of a W is very compact. The yellow, gray, and brown lines with the blue and red circular coil makes the painting interesting, never allowing the viewer to become bored. The red color in the middle brings the viewer’ eyes to be drawn to the looser composition on the right. Here, they see some concrete shapes, allowing the audience to use their imagination. He almost uses the same lines as Brice Marden.

Shawn, 8 years old

Shawn started to slowly open up more. Unexpectedly, he likes to paint freely and he draws with such happiness! The most dominant shape is similar to the sun and it holds so much enthusiasm and is full of vitality. The contrasting colors are very pure. There is one brown stroke on either side of the sun. There is thoughtfulness behind these lines because they are symmetrical. This is the kind of real, pure, emotional painting that us adults rarely draw. This is very similar to the work of Joan Mitchell.

Mia, 4 years old

Oh my gosh! I love this “potato”! Ha ha. If I were to give it a name, I’d call it “potatoes on the table”. It is a mirror image. On the left is the skin of the potato and on the right is the inside of the potato. There are a lot of contrasting details in this painting. The green dots on the left are similar to fingerprints and are very special. I envy Mia for her bold painting! Antoni Tapies’ work is a bit dark, but it has a similar feel to Mia’s painting. The 2 other dotted paintings are also awesome! The blue and red one makes me want to paint like that.

Daniel, 9 years old

As Daniel got older, he began to draw more concrete shapes. If looked at closely, there are many details. Everything is clear with vibrant colors. This painting as a whole is clean, interesting, and refreshing. It looks like outer space too. It’s like an outer space jazz party.

Angeline, 6 years old

Angeline is a very independent and understanding child. This one she drew with Sharpie and painted with Watercolor. The colors harmonize as a whole. There are a lot of cute, funny little things in the picture. I also like the inverted triangle on the black circle. And the following shape of a flag. The middle circle resembles a spaceship. Vaclav Vytlacil has some landscapes and still life paintings that you can look at.

Lesley, 6 years old

Wow! Lesley’s lines are so cool. Her paintings have a very feminine and tender feeling. It is almost like a tangle of wool. When we look at children’s paintings, we have to remember that they have a natural sense of purity and formal skills. This allows them to paint boldly, freely expressing their emotions. This is the essence of human beings. Emma Larsson is a contemporary artist and her water color is beautiful. Lesley may like her paintings.

Ryan, 6 years old

It seems that Ryan likes cartoons. This is the first time he has joined my drawing class.  The colors are so rich and it lends itself to the picture’s overall success. The 7 shapes on the house are similar to water droplets and are shaped very carefully. It’s like fire and is very energetic. Also, the 3 people in the foreground appear to have serious expressions.

Chelsea, 8 years old

Chelsea is one of the older kids. Before, she would favor figurative drawing like cartoons. This is her most freely composed painting to date. There are many interesting characters and symbols within this work. The color of the markers is neutral. The contrasting colors are well done! The curved purple line in the upper right corner is so innovative and unique! I think Chelsea would like Stuart Davis’ work.

Alex, 6 years old

Alex is much more relaxed than usual in this online class. The painting was done entirely in watercolor. The colors are so rich. It is very similar to Willliam’s painting. Each dot is so lively almost as if they were alive. When children draw, they not only think about the result, but also the process. Every time he was drawing, I watched Alex’s serious expression with his little brow furrowed and eyes shining. It was as if there was an infinite world inside his head. He has showcased his desire to absorb knowledge with a brave expression. I envy the kids for being so focused.

Leauna, 5 years old

This is a lovely picture. Leauna is relatively young in her class, but she always takes her work seriously. This painting is compact in the right and loose in the left, which gives off a sense of space. The heart with the rainbow colors are so healing. I think that every heart she draws will be comforting to see.

Cara, 6 years old

This painting from Cara takes my breath away! She usually favors cartoons, but seeing her painting abstractly is refreshing! The colors she chose more muted colors. I found that many children chose muted colors such as paynes gray and dark green. The colors have a particularly modern feel. The grey triangle has black lines that surround it in a box. This shape is so interesting. The blocks of color and lines give the painting a very cubist feel. Upon closer inspection, it bears a striking resemblance to some of Georges Braque’s lighter landscapes.

Yolanda, 6 years old

Yolanda’s paintings are very nice. The colors are so bold! The darker areas almost evenly divide the picture into large and small, which makes it look very balanced. Everything is just right. There is no need to add or subtract anything. The shapes of the fields below are shaped in squares and the dots and lines above reflect each other. It is almost if there are particles in the air. On the right, there is a shape that resembles a dolphin, which adds a magical feel to the image. There is a good sense of space and perspective. It is as if the little dots were floating away in the distance. Although the color is bright, the composition is classic. It is similar to Pieter Bruegel The Elder’s masterpiece.

Joanne, 6 years old

The colors that Joanne uses are so pure! The picture contains many layers of color and is like a landscape. The sky and ground are painted very loosely, giving the audience the opportunity to look at the painting comfortably. She likes to paint many details. The lines are very coherent and smooth. The oil pastels and watercolor combination is very beautiful. There are many variations in the transparency of the paint. Although the colors are different, the composition and layers are similar to Henri Rousseau’s paintings. Henri Rousseau also painted many bizarre figures and animals. Ha ha. Maybe Joanne would like that.

Shirley, 6 years old

Shirley’s work is very mature. Her artistic ability is similar to that of a teenager. It is neat and tidy. I enjoy the zigzag line at the bottom of the page. I also like the line that resembles waves at the beach. It seems that she drew a beach with a castle and sky. It is a very complete piece. The orange triangle that protrudes from the wave is very cool. The style is similar to illustrations found in children’s books. The top and bottom patterns from the picture. The yellow patches of color are like light illuminating the scene.

Miranda, 6 years old

There are a lot of blues and greens used. The white space in the middle is so cool. Is it perhaps a big butterfly? This picture makes me curious and I want to ask a lot of questions. Why leave the space in the middle white? What do the 3 triangles on the right mean? The triangles on the top and broken line in blue, what are they? What are the pink shapes and spiral lines? Ha ha. This is a very mysterious picture and I want to keep exploring it. It is similar to some of Georgia O’ Keefes landscapes.

Jenny, 7 years old

It’s so cute and fun! Ha ha ha. This painting proves that Jenny can make up her own stories. Her style is so unique; what cartoonist can be compared? The colors and the black lines of the sky are done well. The story is simple and clear, which proves that she has good narrative skills. The image is rich and she expresses herself vividly!

Nathan, 7 years old

This is awesome Nathan! It looks as if an infinite and imaginative world is being contained in the shape of a conch. It looks like a landscape with wonderful creatures in a field, the sea, and a rainforest. It almost resembles a human face. The purple and black areas are reminiscent of eyes and the blue block of color is similar to a nose. The pink and black circle on his cheek is fantastic. The brown shape on the black circle is interesting. It’s red edges and yellow “J” contrast greatly with the surrounding blue. The green towards the bottom makes the entire piece pop. The variations of color are subtle, but effective. I would like to ask Nathan what he felt when he painted this. How can he paint with so many rich colors, shapes, and details? It is very similar to some of Ellsworth Kelly’s early work. I envy children who are able to produce such wonderful work with ease.

Allison, 7 years old

So cool! I love it when children draw large shapes with intricate details within or next to the shape. The abundance of details allows you to look at the painting for a long time. This one has a similar composition to Shirley’s because it has a frame that borders the picture. The object in the middle seems to be alive and it moves gently and slowly. I also like what seems to be sea creatures. They are very gentle yet powerful. The contrast between the complementary colors, blue and orange, makes this picture more natural. This painting can be described as natural organic. Allison might like Hilma af Klint’s paintings because they have a similar style.

Madelyn, 5 years old

This is a very special picture. It is an entire scene with houses, rabbits, trees, rainbows, clouds, and birds. Madelyn uses a very unique color scheme for the tall building. The house appears warped and the clouds are beautiful. The tree is very tall and there is a  rainbow shape behind it. Next to the rainbow is a geometric shape composed of the 3 primary colors. There also seems to be a hand-like shape on the right edge of the page. This painting is truly special! The birds are also painted in varying colors. This image reminds me of one of my favorite illustrators, Květa Pacovska.

Matthew, 8 years old

This is the first time Matthew took my drawing class and he took this difficult class! This is the first time I teach this class, too. Hahaha. It takes a little bit of adaptation. My class is indeed fine art-oriented. There is no cartoon drawing and almost no copying. It's too hard to imagine. We want to encourage doodling. We encourage him to sit and listen to the teacher and we encourage him to cover the entire paper! He also wrote a lot of his thoughts “blah blah blah” 😂 I tried to find some strokes he can use for his art in the future. This drawing can be used in a comic, such as a child who is unwilling to listen to class and doodle in his notebook. This  is watercolor paper and this drawing can use more color. His parents should encourage him to practice and paint more with watercolors 👍 There are no masterpieces that can be compared to  his drawing 😂 because the scribbles of a master are obviously different from scribbles of a child. You can find Cy Twombly by yourself. Many people say that "my children can also paint this”, but that is not true. Children's understanding of history, the world, and concepts cannot be more profound or even compared to masters. We will compare only when Matthew could "scribble with purpose".

Ian, 6 years old

Ian has been “out of control” since he discovered watercolor! Haha. Where did this great idea for the black background come from? The contrast of the sun's colors is strong. The robot seems to be the subject he wants to draw at the moment. We don't need to force children to follow the teachers. This is what he really wants to express, and it is great he drew it out with satisfaction. The size of the paper is great! I love it when children draw on big paper! They can fully express themselves when working on a larger scale. His composition is also very good! The robot has many details. The black hollow mesh details are painted neatly and seriously! The gray contrast of the belly is also very good and soft and it added a sense of detail. This painting reminds me of a print by Picasso. Is he painting a robot? 😂 The blue areas seem to represent windows. The orange and white ball he painted in class also seems good. Perhaps he is not very satisfied and that's why he did a new one?

David, 6 years old

David is very funny. I like to joke with him and I laugh so hard every time I chat with him. He is always the first student to finish. If I could use one word to describe this picture it would be unity!He filled the entire background with different colors. This drawing clearly has figures/shapes in the foreground and a tawny yellow ochre background. It’s amazing 👍 Without this tawny color, I might think he was perfunctory 😂 But he colored the entire piece of paper! Amazing! What do children think about when painting? I think after a child finishes a picture, parents can interview the child, but be sure to ask some specific questions. Don't ask, “what are you painting?” You should ask, “why did you choose this color for this background?” And  “why did you paint the background color?” As homework for parents, I implore you to ask your child these questions. Haha. Although the result does not look the same, the paintings of Piet Mondrian could be put in a similar category to David’s work.

Gavin, 6 years old

Gavin has made exceptional progress! I asked him if the picture was of monsters fighting and he said they were men fighting. The red one looks like a monster or an insect. The colors are so beautiful. The creature made up of gray lines and an orange tail is very unique and special. This reminds me of many surrealist works.

Richard, 7 years old

Richard's drawing is clean and tidy! This drawing is very rhythmic! There are detailed designs within each shape! The use of color is rich and bold! The black cloud shape and blue lines draw our eyes into the picture, leading the viewer’s eyes to every corner of the design. This design is very much like the primitive tribal art of Africa. If he put his painting on a t-shirt or printed it into fabric and made it into clothes, I would like to wear it! The overall design is very complicated. There are many ideas! I really want to print his design onto fabric! He may like Abdoulaye Konaté's work because they have similar styles.

Christina, 4 years old

4 year old Christina is too bold! Did she really draw it all by herself? The shapes that are rainbow-colored with black outlines look like eyes! This technique is very powerful. Younger kids often have a more natural sense of colors and composition. This painting is entirely based on feelings! The strokes that only young children can draw are actually very precious. We can see such pure lines and colors only between the ages of 1 and a half and 5. I hope everyone can realize the importance of this period of growth and save the most sincere and pure artworks painted by younger children! No masterpiece could compare with this work of art, masters are busy learning from Christina.

Max, 8 years old

These 2 pictures made by Max are so full of energy! I especially like the second one. The first image looks like symbols. The drawing is very daring . He is not afraid of mixing colors and making bold compositions! It almost looks like a "Crazy Toy World".  The second piece looks like it conveys real emotions. The  blue and red colors contrast the left and right sides. He must have consciously painted it this way. The blue side uses geometric shapes and the red side uses organic shapes. If he did not utilize this technique then it would have been too much. Max must be a very thoughtful kid. Maybe he is a little sensitive. Haha. Is he Pisces 😂? It is possible that he painted 2 sides fighting each other. Overall, it is a painting that makes adults envious! The first one is similar to a graffiti wall and the second one is like Mark Rothko's early work.

Max, 7 years old

When Max paints, he is in a particularly good state of mind and we can clearly feel his confidence. Haha. His strokes are calm and atmospheric. I like the size of this paper. He also added a lot of details of small strokes. I traced Max's composition in my mind and it was very rhythmic. The contrast of graphics and lines, and the contrast between blue and orange, all make the picture look striking. Haha. If you paint with better materials, the effect will be better! The master's paint is 500 times more expensive than ours.

Jonathan, 7 years old

Hahaha. Many children cannot yet understand abstraction, which is fine. This is the human brain. It's amazing. Everyone's ideas, methods of observing, and understanding the world are different. Jonathan must have been particularly fond of painting cute cartoon characters recently. He drew an original story. The small details are particularly good. I like his method of directly drawing with a colored pencil without outlines. The shining light on the big character’s teeth, dandelions, light bulbs, and small objects on the ground are all very cute.

Sophia, 9 years old

This looks like pop art! I enjoy the water droplet shape on the left. The blue and purple sphere and the red circle on the bottom reminds me of flowers. Older children draw more concretely and are relatively more patient, which leads their paintings to be very layered. The bold, chaotic image is fantastic. Sophia should look into Andy Warhol as well as Deborah Kass.

Ethan, 10 years old

Ethan is Sophia’s brother and they can influence each other when they paint. The colors are very pure. I particularly love the references to emojis. This is truly a contemporary work; 5 years ago, emojis were not yet popular. This is a work that represents the current era!

Chloe, 6 years old

There was a lot of water mixed with the watercolors, which resulted in the picture being a bit fuzzy. The colors are quite muted.This is similar to the work of Sam Gilliam. It is hard to understand at first, but iIf you take some time to study the work then you will truly appreciate it. Children’s work does not generally contain the same skills that masterpieces contain, but they display a very unique and pure artistic perspective.

William, 6 years old

So cute! I like William very much. Usually he is energetic and mischievous, but when he paints he is calm and serious. I like this painting a lot. He uses a lot of fun shapes. It is as if they are small, precious treasures that can be picked up. He obviously carefully thinks about what to draw instead of just scribbling. He also included long lines to contrast the small drawings. It seems that he was determined to fill the entire page. These are also figures and words that show his true expression. It’s so cute and it showcases a child’s authentic self. I believe that many children will enjoy William’s paintings because it is so interesting.

Alvin, 7 years old

Alvin is so interesting. Even though we have only met through this online class, I can always sense humor within his paintings. He has painted many instruments and music notes. The humor he chose to express is inexplicable. Usually, humor is difficult to express, but it seems that Alvin has a talent for doing just that.

Deena, 9 years old

This is a very powerful painting. The color and lines have a strong impact. This style reminds me of Anselm Kiefer’s work. Although the colors are different, the impact is the same. The layers of details allows the viewer to look at it for a long time. There seems to be a rose, which expresses a strong love!

Grace, 7 years old

The pink shape and the light green below it are so cool. This reminds me of Indian designs and patternings. It also resembles an ocean scene with a reef on the right. The complementary colors, blue and orange, seem to be popular among children. There are some wonderful lines that are reminiscent of mist and seaweed. This entire painting is full of imagination. There is also a great contrast between the details and the large blocks of color, which are pleasing to look at. 

Daniel, 5 years old

This is so cool. First, this reminds me of work by Sol LeLewitt! Although the lines tha Daniel drew are organic, the colors and overall feel are similar to those of Sot LeWitt. Daniel usually favors cartoons, but this abstract painting is amazing! The lines are so beautiful! The varying colors are endless. This picture looks more like conceptual art instead of cartoons.

Alidia, 6 years old

This summer, Alidia drew very freely, creating many paintings in her own personal style. Her mother gave her a lot of freedom to truly express herself, which gave her the opportunity to paint each piece independently. The black lines are amazing and remind me of a bridge. If you dive into the painting, you would be on a suspension bridge in a forest in a world of magical creatures. The brushstrokes as well the use of black feels similar to the work of Frank Stella.

Alicia, 7 years old

What a lively and energetic picture! Circles, triangles, and squares occupy most of the space. The lines draw the viewer’s eyes in and we are transported to a world of imagination. It is truly an abstract work. The colors and shapes remind me of the art movement, Modernism. Alicia is the contemporary version of Kazimir Malevich!

Maelin, 7 years old

This is the first time that Maelin has taken my class so it is her first time to make abstract paintings. She drew a total of 3 pictures, but I like this one the most. She drew loosely with the oil pastels and used very rich colors. This makes the image appear meaningful. What does this painting mean? Perhaps only she knows. The red block of color is clearly the focal point. It’s like the eye of an angel. This painting reminds me of Christopher Wool. Artists need to understand different theories and concepts. I recommend that children begin to read books on philosophy. When I have the opportunity, I will suggest books for them to read.

Monica, 7 years old

This painting contains a brilliant composition and a lot of complicated lines. This is very similar to landscape painting! There is an excellent sense of space and perspective. This composition is amazing! Her understanding of perspective is spectacular. The objects in the background seem far away while those in front seem close enough to touch. The lines draw in the eye of the viewer. This painting is very balanced and harmonious! The composition is so good that I want to use it myself. It's so good! Monica probably doesn’t understand the technique of composition, rather she has a natural gift for it. The fun lines and patterns form a complete work, which gives it a very mature feeling! So amazing.

Emily, 7 years old

Emily did great! The yellow and red line connect to form a line similar to a figure 8. It is also connected by a magenta trapezoid shape. This reminds me of a necklace that floats in the sea. It also reminds me of a love story. It is like Kitano Takeshi’s movies with its sea, flames and underlying theme of love! It’s a little romantic, a little melancholic, yet very sweet and beautiful.

Danny, 8 years old

This is similar to Cubism and reminds me of work by Lyubov Popova. It is lively and the green makes the painting more vivid. I also like Danny’s use of gray. The gray triangle in the lower right corner is interesting. All of Danny’s paintings equally express his unique personality and he has a strong sense of creative self-expression. This is his own personal style. The overall picture is composed and his choice of colors is special. It is evident that Danny was angry and he let his emotions flow onto the paper, but he was careful and created a fluid and neat painting.

Ryan, 5 years old

My current idol, Ryan’s drawing, is finally here. Color, detail, and composition can be described as perfect. Hahaha. The upper left side of the piece looks like an eye due to the 2 strokes of black inside of the blue parentheses. The pink circle and square in the middle  and the blue mesh shape next to it form a contrast of colors, lines, and graphics. The right side of the painting is rich in colors and has many details. The left side is relatively relaxed and loose. The entire painting is like a backyard garden. It has many layers and is easy to look at, not messy. Overall, it is a complete and interesting painting. Although he did not consciously paint like this, this is a child's natural feeling and talent. We must not criticize our children for not painting recognizable things. If adults are too critical, then children will lose their unique perspective. It is similar to Mattise's painting. Actually, it is better than Mattise. Haha.

Tony, 8 years old

At first glance, the painting reminds me of easter eggs. Then I noticed the waves, mountains, hats, fields, and a chicken coop made up of a blue shape with black lines. I first thought of Vietnam because the overall color is yellow, which is reminiscent of tropical Asian countries. It made me think of the Nepalese contemporary artist Tsherin Sherpa. There is a spiritual feeling within this piece that seems to be connected to science and religion. It is very mysterious and it is a masterpiece!

Yuchen, 9 years old

This is so modern! The lines of rich colors are layered giving the painting a 3-dimensional effect. Yuchen created a character called Cloudy Man, which she included in this picture. So fun and vivid! There are shapes that are more compact towards the center with lines that jut out to the edges of the page. The lines are similar to webs, which first reminded me of Spiderman haha. This is very similar to the illustrations done for the cartoon Adventure Time. The future of cartoons depends on children like Yuchen.

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