Seriously Silly for Art

For Mr. Darcy’s 40th birthday I gave him an online drawing class with Carla Sonheim, the author of Drawing Lab.

The class is called Silly 5: Drawing Worksheets for Adults and the description included:

“Our goal: to get you to just PLAY, just 10 minutes a day, with pen and paper, thoughts and images. (You will be surprised how a shot of silliness like this will positively inform the other goings-on in your day, including your regular artwork.)”

The only part that nagged at me was the bit about the daily assignment as a worksheet. “Worksheet” conjures the seventh grade sweat of trying get the one correct answer to the problem and the smell of the locker room (but that’s really another story), and we pretty much strive to avoid them in our homeschool life. “Worksheet” does not immediately conjure anything to do with art or open-ended or silly.

So I wondered and bit my nails a bit.

But, I also had to trust the artist who has brought such joy and freedom into our family art life (via her book), surely she knew the same things about worksheets as I did and she had found a secret life of worksheets that I hadn’t a clue about, right?

The class started this past week and we’re now on our fifth silly sheet and I can tell you these things are definitely not the worksheets your dog ate the night before math class.

As part of the class, Mr. Darcy was allowed to share his worksheets with all of us, and we can post them to the flicker group as well (teachers participating can share them with their students!).

Let’s get to some visuals:

Basic instructions: Draw this fish a few times with your dominant hand, switch and draw with your non-dominant hand.


When we started this one I immediately thought of the small space of the worksheet (and the worksheet heebie jeebies crept up) and I opted for my sketch book instead.  Then we peeked at the flicker group and the other class members had leapt right out of the box and their fish were swimming all around, over words, in the borders, some had mustaches or canes or attitudes.  Here are two examples from our fam:


Our 9 year old

Click here to see one more from the flicker group.

Basic instructions for this next worksheet: Draw the eye as exact as you can to the one that is there, flip the nose and draw it, add a mouth.

Once again, I thought most of these would look the same and my imagination stayed small.  Then I watched my family and these silly classmates create crazy characters (characters that certainly wouldn’t believe they were on a worksheet even if you told them).

Our 9 year old:

mr. darcy

And my favorite worksheet-defying face from flicker, click here.

Basic Instructions for this next one: Turn the blobs into something else.

By this time I knew this wasn’t a worksheet, this was a PLAYsheet. Take a look at these:

the 9 year old:

the 11 year old:

the mr. darcy:

the me:

Basic Instructions: Create the Squeen’s Car (That would be the Silly Queen of Fleep)

the 11 year old:

the 9 year old:

Basic Instructions: Draw your feet without looking at your paper (blind contour drawing, this is also in her book)

the 9 year old

Don’t you feel your imagination cracking wide open to the possibilities, aren’t you ready to grab a pen?

Thank you, Mrs. Sonheim, for a seriously silly path to art.

You can see more of the student’s work, which continues through the 28th, here.

And you can read more about our family’s love of Drawing lab, here and here.

No comments

No comments yet. Be the first.

Leave a reply