We talk a lot about “Process Art”. But what is it and why do we keep going on about it? Get ready, because we know you’re going to love process art as much as we do once you’ve read this post.
Process Art is pretty much what the name suggests: art opportunities that focus on the process. What’s the process?
It’s the behaviours,
and actions that happen WHILE someone is engaged with art materials.
A key component of Process Art is the lack of importance given to what is produced during the art experience. We aren’t focused on the child making a specific product or replicating a model. We aren’t expecting a certain outcome from the experience, but rather we are placing importance on the child’s exploration of materials and using them in ways that are inspiring and engaging to them.
For example, in a process art invitation, maybe we set out a canvas, some paint, and paint brushes (very standard art materials). The child may choose to mix the paints or use their fingers instead of the paint brush. They may make circular markings on the canvas or a big overlapping bundle of markings. Maybe they tap their paint brush on the canvas. All of this is exploratory and exciting to the child! And the experience becomes child-led and therefore more meaningful to them and their growth.
Process Art experiences allow children to express themselves in ways that are engaging and meaningful to them. Children can explore and build their strengths without concern for the outcome. Art is forgiving in this sense, especially when it is child-led, and process oriented.
Imagine how empowering and uplifting this is for children? They are able to express themselves while exploring how things work, and there is no chance that they will fail, no chance of disappointing themselves or an adult.
Children can push boundaries and really test and explore when engaged in process art. There is no bar set, no expectation, and therefore no risk of failure. The experience is their own.
Process Art gives children the space and opportunity to try out new materials, learn how their bodies move and feel with certain mediums, and discover how their movements can make marks or change things. They can express themselves, learn what they like and dislike, and gain confidence in understanding the world around them.
Process Art is play. And of course, play is learning!
Share your process art creations with us! Tag us @thankfulfamilyarthouse