Every week after I am done with class as I start cleaning up, this little sparkle of a kid - who thinks and talks fast (*Which i truly appreciate) dazzles me with her insight, great conversation, and her original takes on the rainbow.
One day as I was cleaning up, the girl popped in and started in right away.
"Did you know there are a lot more colors than just the colors that usually get put in a rainbow" she said.
I look up and say, "yes, come to think of it, there are."
she has taken up to one of the tables and helped herself to the materials available (*which was totally o.k. and I think I let her use them the week before as i was cleaning up, but she didn't talk as much, just colored.) - but today she was ready to talk.
"YES!" she said as if making a big point in the middle of some seminar, or that someone finally understood an important fact that seemed to be lost on the world. "you know, when i draw a rainbow, i add the colors that aren't there. Brown, and pink.. "she's coloring away...... then looks up at me with a big smile - ready to tell me the best secret ever. "Did you know, I just discovered a new color the other day?!?!" and I'm about to ask what it is, but she's too excited to wait for me to get the words all the way out of my mouth "IT IS PEACH!!"
Week after week I have some of the most inspiring and creative conversations with her. She's like a high-pitched professor in pink sneakers.
The next week, i was feeling really down. Had a lot of crummy things going on, and just wasn't feeling much like talking. I was cleaning, and then this little head peaks up from below the stairs behind a railing. It was like a little puppy yelling surprise and throwing confetti
"DO YOU REMEMBER ME???" she asked. I smiled - of course I do....
I cleaned and was keeping to myself, and she picked up on the little black cloud over my head for sure. She grabbed some paper and a pencil. She crumpled her forehead a bit, getting into serious work. When she was done she announced "LOOK AT THIS!! IT IS FOR YOU!!!!"
Usually, kids give me their drawings as an alternative to the recycling bin in these circumstances, and that's usually what they say right before they run off and abandon you with the clean up. I look up and see this: (*above)
"It's for you" she repeats "it's for you to put your own colors in so to make sure that all the ones you like are represented. And don't worry, the colors don't have to go in order."
I was a little blown away, and felt like perhaps I should let her teach the next class. As an artist, I usually pride myself in being able to look at things differently and find new connections and options... but here is this little girl who's challenging the "ROY-G-BIV" theory!
So i learned a lot from her that day.
The next week she felt that perhaps it is good to see a traditional rainbow... so I don't get confused, but reminded me again as she handed it over "Now, there are colors missing here. Just so you wouldn't forget, I added the brown"
Last week I had already put the drawing materials away, so she hunted around the area to see if she could find an alternative. We were doing paper mache or something, so I left the markers at home, not realizing that perhaps I need to bring them to the class I take from her on creativity after teaching one myself as a reward. She opens a few bins, closets, tupperwear containers and appears with a paper place mat at some crayons. "don't worry, I'll make you a rainbow"
Her face got really serious this time, and then she started to warble to herself for a few seconds to then quickly look up and say "I like to sing when I draw."
"That's nice" I said thinking that actually is kind of hard to do and was impressed by her multitasking as she was back to coloring, singing, and now the top half of her is completely focused on this drawing, while her legs are dancing all over the place.
"I think it is important to have music on when you are drawing" she says without looking up, but her legs are still dancing, while her upper body is leaned over the drawing with all seriousness like crafting some sort of government bill. "When I have music on it directs me on how I make my marks and affects the picture you draw"
"how old are you?" I ask still trying to find my jaw.
Now i'm ready to start following the cult of the little rainbow girl, and now, she already has a following.
Today it was her, and we had a lovely conversation about making silly voices. We bonded over being fast talkers and having people miss what you were saying, so they mock back "all I heard was grubjfdjsjfkjrjle" I'm glad I'm not alone. She expresses her great disappointment in those who cannot follow at her speed. We then talked about having silly dads.... As she is coloring, a few of her friends follow her, and then next thing I know, it's another art class, but definitely being lead by her, who is clearly the youngest in the group - by a lot, and yet totally in charge.
So today little rainbow girl gave me these:
a rainbow in today's weather:
This one she brought it over and could tell that the feeble mind of the adult might miss the obvious narrative. She points to the green guy "This is a sea turtle" (green and light blue body) "Mixed with a mermaid" (note the 2 green and brown tails coming from the ears) "Mixed with a dolphin!" (the black and purple).... yet no mention of the origins of the antenna. "AAAANNNNDDDD it's surrounded by cats!"
I look at it for a moment as she's going "here's a cat, and there's a cat, and another cat" - giggling all the way through it.
"so are the cats underwater then with the turtle-mermaid-dolphin?"
She looks shocked and slightly offended by my stupidity. "They are all underwater of course!" (*the point of using the blue side of the paper placemat.
So as I said, she has a following now in the cult of the rainbow girl. This is what they drew after looking at her drawing / her directive.