This morning my daughter came downstairs and saw the drawing I made last night. She decided she wanted to draw too, but quickly became frustrated and annoyingly began to say ridiculous things like, "I am bad at drawing." and "I can't draw."
I told her, "Drawing can be tricky, you have to draw what you see, not what you think it looks like. You have to look carefully and practice, but really there is no wrong way, the important things are to really look, and to try." Alas, she tossed her paper aside anyway, and moved on to other things.
Then, this evening, she asked, "Can we do something together?" So she and I sat side by side drawing. As I pondered where to begin, she sang to me about using my imagination, then she carefully studied some shells I had out, and began to draw. . . Without complaint (or self deprication) she drew with confidence, trying out some shading and shadows and making boxes on her paper to contain many small sketches.
As I swirled a pencil around trying to capture a wave on a flat surface, she said, "You inspire me to try something else." And on she went to fill another box with lines, texture, shading, and imagination.
When I tucked her in, she was still drawing away. Whales, shark fins, sunsets, an owl on a branch... I wonder what she will dream about tonight. . .