Monday, August 06, 2007


See my pretty sunflowers? Why are they in a jar? Because the wind is blowing so hard, it broke their little heads off. Even these two small little flowers were no match for the wind. Of course, it's close to 100 degrees here, but that doesn't stop the wind.

Looking at this jar of sunflowers reminded me of being in art class. I loved taking art in school. I could not draw, but that didn't stop me from loving art class until I hit the 8th grade and had a woman teacher (her name escapes me at the moment). She was big on drawing and I couldn't draw. Day after day after day of drawing and she would return my papers with D's on them. I kept hoping we'd move on to something else, but no, she was a drawing person.

Then the day came when we walked in the room and every table had big huge vases of sunflowers on them. Our assignment that week was to draw what was in front of us. We would be doing this for a week -- draw what is in front of you. As the week wore on, the sunflowers drooped more and more and we kept drawing them in their stages. What a long week! In her class, there was no talking whatsoever. Just a long hour of drawing droopy sunflowers.

At the end of the week, the teacher gave a speech to the class about how disappointed she was in all of us. In fact, there was only one person who actually "saw" what was in front of them. Oh great, I thought, here comes another D. But I was the one person! Her complaint: nobody else put stems on the sunflowers for the leaves to come off of. I did. My first A. For dead sunflowers. Of course, her little comment on the paper was to the effect that I needed much more training and practice in drawing -- I still wasn't good at drawing -- but she gave me the A because I did try to capture what I saw.

I was very glad when she left the following year and we got a man teacher who thought art was all about being fun and creative and you had four different mediums to work in. And drawing wasn't one of them.


Gerry said...

congrats on the A! That teacher might have had more of an impact on your current creativity than you realize.

Lauri said...

Oh My!!!!That must have been a awful year,Reminds me of the math teacher who only helped the ones already admitted to MIT type of schools.If she could see your artwork now!

gocrazywithme said...

I agree with Lauri; if she could only see your work now! Sometimes teachers don't realize how much power they weild over their students, or how long their comments can ring in our ears.

Jo in NZ said...

AAckk! I wonder how many art teachers are responsible for the demise of many great artists ( before they even get started)?

Susan said...

I love the sunflowers. Between here and Hettinger, there are two farms with entire fields of them. I guess they are a cash crop for some farmers. There was a spot in Montana where there were miles of them. I just loved them! You still get an A in art, from me.