While I’ve named this series 52 Cards (I know, I’m so original), I could also subtitle it “How Many Times Can I Turn My Toddler Loose with Paint Without Losing My Sanity?” Getting ready for any type of art project with a child takes a little bit of preparation and a lot of patience.
Today I let her pick out a bird image from an old field guide I have, and she chose an emu. That led to my inspiration, because the cassowary was on the other side of the emu page. I noticed in the description that the cassowary is native to Australia, so I tore apart a map and layered Australia behind the bird image. Believe it or not, it was only after I glued down the map and the bird that I noticed that we’d used the ace of spades, leaving a nice A in the corner to stand for Australia. In addition to our “found” papers, we used acrylic paints and Mod Podge.
Here are the fronts of our cards (mine is on the left, Aoife’s is on the right):
And the backs:
I’m really happy with how mine turned out, and Aoife’s is always amazing. Instead of just putting down several blobs of color for her to choose from (because she would usually choose ALL THE COLORS), I had her tell me one color at a time that she wanted to use. Today the most interesting thing for her was to dip her paintbrush in the paint and then directly into the water, coloring the water instead of her card.
As much as it takes a little more prep and clean up, I love this little weekend project we have going. Aoife has no fear and no knowledge of technique, so she is constantly experimenting. I always try to think about four steps ahead, making me much more hesitant to use any of my materials. I’m learning to be fearless, and I’ve apparently been waiting for a two-year-old to teach me.