Jan 29 2012

#274 Less is More (29)

From Joanne and Cody in Baton Rouge, Louisiana (both age 7)

With this note:

HELLO my name is joanne! i love wolves, they are my favorite animals. when i fond this site i was so excited!!!! i check it every day.  thought i would try to draw a wolf of my own. i think i did a WONDERFUL job!! i hope you enjoy it and consider putting it on your site. my favorite food is ketchup. i eat ketchup with everything, even on my cake. yum, ketchup cake!! i hope you like margarita(my wolf) she is wearing her winter coat and her pretty bow. i love her. please put her on your site!!!!!!!!!
Salutations! my name is Cody Brown (YES it IS  a girls name) and OMG I AM LITERALLY IN LOOOOVVVEE WITH YOUR SITE!! And just so you know my favorite color is Mahogany. I love that color so much i named my toothbrush Mahogany(i wouldve named my lamp that but mom said thatd be creepy….) Well i hope you put BOTH  of our drawings in……..( my wolfies name is Kathleen but you can also call her Kath or Kat OR ((she pefers this one)) Ka-aaaaa)
P.s. we live in Baton Rouge Mississippi.
We are 7 years old:):):):)::))))))))))))))))))) hereare our wolves:
THANK YOOU (not you YOU)
Joanne&Cody<3 ;)


Nov 13 2011

#197 “Classwork”

From a stranger in China

Over the past several months I’ve seen wolves printed on a wide variety of canvasses. Artwork drawn on everything from napkins to tampon boxes to Post-It Notes has arrived in my post office box, but never have I received a picture of a wolf that was drawn on the surface of a desk in a Chinese classroom. I guess there’s a first time for everything.

One of the most interesting aspects of this picture is that it possesses both temporary as well as timeless qualities. The picture certainly reflects a level of talent that is praiseworthy; the viewer can easily tell that the artist has a well-defined skill set when it comes to drawing wolves. And so it is a bit of a shame to realize that this wolf will soon be erased or washed away (if it hasn’t been already). But at the same time, the illustration has been preserved with a thoughtful and well-timed photograph that will preserve it for ages to come. Even though the original work will be lost to annals of time, the photograph will endure.

On another note, when I look at this picture, I’m also struck by the universal nature of artistic expression by children, especially in the classroom environment. At one point we were all children working our way up through the grades, anxiously awaiting the day that we would be finished with our formal schooling and free to take the world storm and follow our own individual desires. Along the way we all doodled on desks and scribbled in spiral notebooks and passed notes to friends and wasted time and flirted with the opposite sex. Things haven’t really changed that much, and I suppose they never will. Whether you’re in China or South Africa or the U.S., school is still school, and children are still children, and there will always be that need for distraction and that desire for a personal creative outlet.

But going back to that earlier point about this illustration being fleeting as well as permanent… I can’t help but be reminded of a sonnet by Edmund Spencer which seems to strike a similar thematic chord. Your homework tonight is to read this poem and discuss it with a friend. Now get to work!

One day I wrote her name upon the strand,
But came the waves and washed it away:
Again I wrote it with a second hand,
But came the tide, and made my pains his prey.
“Vain man,” said she, “that dost in vain assay,
A mortal thing so to immortalize;
For I myself shall like to this decay,
And eke my name be wiped out likewise.”
“Not so,” (quod I) “let baser things devise
To die in dust, but you shall live by fame:
My verse your vertues rare shall eternize,
And in the heavens write your glorious name:
Where whenas death shall all the world subdue,
Our love shall live, and later life renew.”