Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Computer Artist

I don't think you'll need any further evidence that Oliver is the perfect combination of Marty and I after this post. When I was pregnant with Oliver, and daydreaming about who he would be, I usually imagined he would take after one of us, but not both. He'd either be like me, an optimistic, creative art historian/interior designer, or his father, a cynical, orderly engineer and computer nerd. Hey, opposites attract, right? But do they blend? Apparently, they do!

Yesterday, I mentioned how Oliver has become more obsessed with the computer, though this isn't really a new development. We've watched youtube videos together for a long time now. But he is definitely becoming more independent about doing things himself in many aspects of his life, and this is just another one. The list of activities he enjoys on the computer has grown so long that he would spend hours on it if we let him. He types his beloved alphabet, he listens to music, watches videos, browses our photo collection, and he paints. He is proficient at clicking the mouse, scrolling, typing, making menus selections, and reformatting things. As I said in yesterday's post, it's really quite amazing, and scary. Of course, we are always watching him to make sure he doesn't ruin anything, or worse, buy anything, or wander where he shouldn't. I do wonder a little bit how healthy this obsession is, but so much of what he does is creative that I don't feel I can discourage it. I'm not sure how common this activity is among kids his age, but I get the feeling that he's probably  more interested in the computer than most.

Lately, he has been waking up from his naps and groggily declaring, "Want to paint." By the way, yes, he's sleeping again, but only after he peruses all his Curious George books. So he often wakes up with book imprints all over his face and arms. Anyway, he doesn't mean with actual paintbrushes and paints, but with the far neater Windows Paint program on the computer. I think his interest started last summer on a visit to Grandma and Pop-pop's house, when Marty was trying to entertain him when Grandma was busy, and opened the Paint program on their computer. Then Oliver remembered it when we visited them again at Christmas, and hasn't forgotten it again. I started trying to save some of his pictures when I can, though he often screams at me when I try to grab the mouse and click save. And other times I see an amazing picture on the screen, only to have him completely blacken it out minutes later. But I've saved a few, and thought I'd share them with you, and see if I'm not the only one who thinks he is immensely talented. I'm supposed to think that, I'm his mom. But I'm also an art historian, and I think these rank up there with the best!

I had to compress these for the blog, so you can click on them to see them bigger, though the line quality is better in the original files.

 Doubly creative: playing music and painting!


Check out those compositions, color choices, and creative decisions! Are these awesome or what?! I think I'll choose a few favorites and have them printed poster size to hang in his room after we move.

Don't worry, I'm still encouraging his manual creative skills. He does lots of painting at school, and coloring at home. So what does the combination of artist and engineer become? Architect? That would be fitting, since my first degree was in interior design in an architecture program. Graphic designer? Computer game designer? Oh, that would be Marty's dream come true! I don't know, but I love it, and I love watching him become the person he will be.

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