The following picture was drawn by my daughter when she was in preschool. I could not remember what it was supposed to be, but thought that it was a monster of some sort, maybe a bear because that was a very friendly looking monster. I also remembered that she went through a phase where she put nipples on lots of drawings. When I showed her this drawing last night, she had not seen it in over 6 years, but she immediately said it was a dinosaur. So, there you have it! Mystery solved! A pink dinosaur with nipples, it is.
Fast forward 6-7 years from that image. My daughter just happened to draw a dragon the other night. I thought I would provide it for contrast.
I swear I did not ask her to draw this or give her instruction in any way, shape, or form. This is what she happened to draw when over at a friend’s house. The dinosaur picture was collecting dust on a shelf in my school office, and she had no idea her work was going to be of value to a course I am taking. Note: more use of colors, but similar shapes to how she drew it as a 3 or 4 year old (She’d argue with me here as the first picture is a dinosaur, not a dragon). Also, unlike my other kids, she labels her drawings and ALWAYS puts her name on them. She sketched it out in pencil before committing to marker.
She is at a stage where her work has become stylized. She has learned to like certain features, and she uses them repeatedly. For instance, in the following picture, the hairstyle, the eye shape, the missing nose: these are hallmarks of her drawings of people these days. Two or three years ago, they were stick figures with clothing drawn over the sticks, and all females were given a 1950s flip hairdo while all males were given about 8 lines of hair sticking straight up from their scalp. My youngest boy has his own hallmarks; each of his stick figures always had a hand that was a circle with four fingers and a thumb when he was in kindergarten.
The last two pictures have been artwork from a 10 year old girl. The following is from my youngest, an 8 year old boy. All of the animals have specific features. The bird in the upper left appears to be a chicken. The bird in the tree is clearly an owl. Sizing is off, as the birds are both larger than the pig, who is for some reason hanging out with a tiger. Just behind the pig is what appears to be a dandelion or two. The point here is that all of the characters in the picture are identifiable without a parent having to ask. Like my daughter’s dragon, this picture has been drawn in pencil first before being colored in, but items like the sun and the flower have been drawn spontaneously in crayon.