The Drawing Development Of Child

Age Development By Viktor Lowenfeld
Creative and Mental Growth
Betty Edwards
Creative and Mental Growth
2 Years Scribbling stage
First disordered scribbles are simply records of enjoyable kinesthetic activity, not attempts at portraying the visual world. After six months of scribbling, marks are more orderly as children become more engrossed. Soon they begin to name scribbles, an important milestone in development.
The scribbling stage
Random scribbles begin at age one-and-a-half, but quite quickly take on definite shapes. Circular movement is first because it is most natural anatomically.
3 Years The preschematic stage
First conscious creation of form occurs around age three and provides a tangible record of the child's thinking process. The first representational attempt is a person, usually with circle for head and two vertical lines for legs. Later other forms develop, clearly recognizable and often quite complex. Children continually search for new concepts so symbols constantly change.
The stage of symbols
After weeks of scribbling, children make the discovery of art: a drawn symbol can stand for a real thing in the environment. Circular form becomes a universal symbol for almost anything. Later symbols become more complex, reflecting child's observations on the world around him.
4 Years Pictures that tell stories
At four or five, the child begins to tell stories or work out problems with her drawings, changing basic forms as needed to express meaning. Often once the problem is expressed, the child feels better able to cope with it.
6 Years The schematic stage
The child arrives at a "schema," a definite way of portraying an object, although it will be modified when he needs to portray something important. The schema represents the child's active knowledge of the subject. At this stage, there is definite order in space relationships: everything sits on the base line.
The Landscape
By five or six, children develop a set of symbols to create a landscape that eventually becomes a single variation repeated endlessly. A blue line and sun at the top of the page and a green line at the bottom become symbolic representations of the sky and ground. Landscapes are compose carefully, giving the impression that removing any single form would throw off the balance of the whole picture.
8 Years The gang stage
The dawning realism The child finds that schematic generalization no longer suffices to express reality. This dawning of how things really look is usually expressed with more detail for individual parts, but is far from naturalism in drawing. Space is discovered and depicted with overlapping objects in drawings and a horizon line rather than a base line. Children begin to compare their work and become more critical of it. While they are more independent of adults, they are more anxious to conform to their peers.
The stage of complexity
At nine or ten years, children try for more detail, hoping to achieve greater realism, a prized goal. Concern for where things are in their drawings is replaced by concern for how things look-- particularly tanks, dinosaurs, super heroes, etc. for boys; models, horses, landscapes, etc. for girls.
10 Years The stage of realism
The passion for realism is in full bloom. When drawings do not "come out right" (look real) they seek help to resolve conflict between how the subject looks and previously stored information that prevents their seeing the object as it really looks. Struggle with perspective, foreshortening, and similar spatial issues as they learn how to see.
12 Years The pseudo- naturalistic stage
This stage marks the end of art as spontaneous activity as children are increasingly critical of their drawings. The focus is now on the end product as they strive to create "adult-like" naturalistic drawings. Light and shadow, folds, and motion are observed with mixed success, translated to paper. Space is depicted as three-dimensional by diminishing the size of objects that are further away.
The crisis period
The beginning of adolescence marks the end of artistic development among most children, due to frustration at "getting things right." Those who do manage to weather the crisis and learn the "secret" of drawing will become absorbed in it. Edwards believes that proper teaching methods will help children learn to see and draw and prevent this crisis.
14 Years The period of decision
Art at this stage of life is something to be done or left alone. Natural development will cease unless a conscious decision is made to improve drawing skills. Students are critically aware of the immaturity of their drawing and are easily discouraged. Lowenfeld's solution is to enlarge their concept of adult art to include non-representational art and art occupations besides painting (architecture, interior design, handcrafts, etc.)
16 Years





Why Children Need Art?
Child art is the drawings, paintings and other artistic works created by children. It is also referred to as "children's art" or the "art of children".
"Child art In its primary sense the term was created by Franz Cižek (1865-1946) in 1890-s.The term 'child art' also has a parallel and different usage in the world of contemporary fine art, where it refers to a sub-genre of artists who depict children in their works.
Third connotation of "child art" implies art intended for viewing by children, say illustrations in a book for juvenile readers. Such art could be done by a child or a professional adult illustrator.


Premises for understanding of importance of art for children were laid by J.-J. Rousseau (1712-78), J.H. Pestalozzi (1746-1827), John Ruskin (1819-1900) and Herbert Spencer (1820-1903).
Agenda of art education for children was discussed at the International Conference of Education 1884, held in London at the Health Exhibition. The discussion framework was largely shaped by the widespread of schools of design for professional training of children and youth in the UK, beginning from 1852. Some of the conference participants underlined importance of creativity, imaginations and special methodology for development of children's artistic skills. Ebenezer Cooke (1837-1913) has pointed out that "if a child follows its bent and draws animals its own way, in action, and repeats them, outlines them, and colours them too, he will produce a drawing which may be comparable to the archaic period of more than one historic school." The proceedings of the conference, ed. by E. Cooke, were issued in the 1885-86 Journal of Education, published by the Society for the Development of the Science of Education.
First European exhibition of drawings by children was organized by Robert Ablett (1848–1945) in London, 1890. First collection of 1250 children's drawing and sculpture pieces was assembled by Corrado Ricci (1858-1934), an Italian art historian.
Aesthetic appreciation of children's art as untainted by adult influence was extolled by Franz Cižek, who called a child's drawing "a marvelous and precious document." Discovery of the aesthetic quality of the unskilled visual expression by children was related to the aesthetics of modernism and, in case of Cižek, to the Vienna Secession
In 1897, Cižek opened the Juvenile Art Class, a weekend school upholding children creativity uninhibited by adult vocational standards. The initiative was supported by his Secession friends-artists and opposed by the traditional art teachers. The Class accepted pupils of 2-14 years old for two hours a week, free of charge, with no selection. Cižek claimed that he was working "as an artist, not as a teacher", and actually "learned and not taught." In the work, the theory of developmental stages was propagated.
Psychologists' interest in children's art was reflected in works by Georg Kerschensteiner (Die Entwickelung der Zeichnerischen Begabung, 1905, on the grounds of analysis of some 100 000 drawings), Georges-Henri Luquet (Les Dessins D’un Enfant, 1912, using 1500 drawings of the author's daughter from 3 to 8 years old), Georges Rouma (Le Langage Graphique de l’Enfant, Paris, 1913), Karl Bühler (1918 ff.), Florence Goodenough, Helga Eng, Robert Coles. According to D.D. Kelly, consequent domination of Piagetian theory of cognitive psychology largely marginalized the psychological studies of children's art, which were revitalized only towards the end of the 20th century.

Stages of child art
As the child develops, their art passes through a number of stages. 4 of them were for the first time defined by E.Cooke, under influence of Herbert Spencer's evolutionary theory.

Presently, the stages are generally differentiated as follows:

Scribble by one year old. From about their first birthday children achieve the fine motor control to handle a crayon. At first they scribble. The youngest child scribbles with a series of left and right motions, later up, down and then circular motions are added. The child appears to get considerable pleasure from watching the line or the colours appear. Often however children do not pay attention to the edges of the page and the lines go beyond the confines of the page. Children are often also interested in body painting and, given the opportunity, will draw on their hands or smear paint on their faces.
Later, from about their second birthday, controlled scribbling starts. Children produce patterns of simple shapes: circles, crosses and star-bursts. They also become interested in arrangement and can produce simple collages of coloured paper, or place stones in patterns. Once children have established controlled scribbling they begin to name their scribbles.


Smiling person (combined head and body) age 4½From about age three, the child begins to combine circles and lines to make simple figures. At first, people are drawn without a body and with arms emerging directly from the head. The eyes are often drawn large, filling up most of the face, and hands and feet are omitted. At this stage it may be impossible to identify the subject of the art without the child's help.
Later drawings from this stage show figures drawn floating in space and sized to reflect the child's view of their importance. Most children at this age are not concerned with producing a realistic picture.


Birch bark document 202, showing symbolic drawing of people, age 6-7. In this stage of a child's development, they create a vocabulary of images. Thus when a child draws a picture of a cat, they will always draw the same basic image; perhaps modified (this cat has stripes that one has dots, for example). This stage of drawing begins at around age five. The basic shapes are called symbols or schema.
Each child develops his/her own set of symbols, which are based on their understanding of what is being drawn rather than on observation. Each child's symbols are therefore unique to the child. By this age, most children develop a "person" symbol which has a properly defined head, trunk and limbs which are in some sort of rough proportion.
Two schematic figures on a green base line Before this stage the objects that child would draw would appear to float in space, but at about five to six years old the child introduces a baseline with which to organize their space. This baseline is often a green line (representing grass) at the bottom of the paper. The figures stand on this line. Slightly older children may also add secondary baselines for background objects and a skyline to hold the sun and clouds.
It is at this stage that cultural influences become more important. Children not only draw from life, but also copy images in their surroundings. They may draw copies of cartoons. Children also become more aware of the story-telling possibilities in a picture. The earliest understanding of a more realistic representation of space, such as using perspective, usually comes from copying.


As children mature they begin to find their symbols limiting. They realize that their schema for a person is not flexible enough, and just doesn't look like the real thing. At this stage, which begins at nine or ten years old, the child will lend greater importance to whether the drawing looks like the object being drawn.
Artwork by 9 year old (Rafael Mesa) this can be a frustrating time for some children, as their aspirations outstrip their abilities and knowledge. Some children give up on drawing almost entirely. However others become skilled and it is at this stage that formal artistic training can benefit the child most. The baseline is dropped and the child can learn to use rules such as perspective to organize space better. Story-telling also becomes more refined and children will start to use formal devices such as the comic strip.


Art therapy can be an effective way for children to develop and connect with their emotions. Some children with autism have found that drawing can help them to express feelings that they have difficulty expressing otherwise. Similarly children who have faced horrors such as war can find it difficult to talk about what they have experienced directly. Art can help children come to terms with their emotions in these situations.


Home | About Us | Inspiration | Admin | Events | Testimonials | Reach Us
Little Fingers Art Studio, Copyright Reserved, © 2012, Website Designed By Wiyamana