Thursday, July 19, 2007

Creativity in Maine

Andrew Wyeth, who did some of his most famous paintings near where we are in Maine, said his father believed children need ample amounts of boredom in order to develop their own creativity. I think he was right.

We've had mostly beautiful weather during our vacation in Maine, but we've also had our share of rain.

Rain, fog, no television, no friends, and no phone. M deserves a medal for playing a record number of "Monopoly" games. There are other children around - we see them at nearby tennis courts for lessons - but they don't surface when our children play baseball or soccer on the big lawn below our house.

I think the lack of anything to do, the boredom that my children are experiencing, is bearing fruit. Fruit in the way of collaborative creativity.

The other day my oldest son, who is 17, started writing a play.

In the evening, as I read Babar and Zephir (by Jean de Brunhoff) to my youngest two boys in their bedroom, my eldest came in to sell the roles he'd created for his youngest brothers.

It rained this afternoon, beginning on the way home from our family's less-than-scintillating visit to a nearby town. Tonight all six of my children are at the dining room table reading the new script.

Even if they never spend another minute on this play of theirs, I love the fact that for a little while they are doing something creative, something with their minds and hearts, something that has nothing to do with computer games or movies or other technology that is served up to them for their entertainment.

This morning I tried to draw a picture of the incredible view out the living room window. I already respected artistic abilities, but my meager drawing made me put artists somewhere close to God.

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