This work, "Making Rainbows" by Lynnea Strout stopped me in front of its display window as Kyle and I meandered around ArtPrize in Grand Rapids. I was initially drawn to the colors: I love pastels. They're sweet and playful. And I loved how the paint was splattered on the canvas, as though the silhouetted boy was blowing the paint bubbles onto the canvas in real time. To me, the silhouetted boy could be any boy, or any child, a symbol of our childhoods and simple pleasures. Life seemed so adventurous. We were so curious. So imaginative. Life was vibrant with opportunities and mysteries and games. This painting captures that idealized portrait of childhood for me.

The painting evokes a playful mood, but I would imagine the process of creating it was a form of play for the artist. The messy paint splattered everywhere. Blowing the bubbles. Channeling one's inner child. Creating. Playing.

It's visual cotton candy. Simple, sweet, and full of whimsy. But it's also a transportive work that made me think back on playing skip-it, dancing around with my little ponies, coloring with sidewalk chalk, and pretending I was a mermaid, splashing around in the tub with goggles on.

On the ArtPrize website, Strout says of her work: "I'm hoping that when people see this piece they will remember the happiness they felt when they were little and loved making their own rainbows." She definitely succeeded in doing so for me.

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    About Me

    A lover of literature and the arts and an advocate for global awareness and active citizenship, I spend my days with high school English and Social Studies students exploring why it all matters and how they can have a voice in the world.  This is my space to document and reflect on my practice, note happenings in education, and share my appreciation for the arts.


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