To Paint Like A Child


“Salvation and Desire” – painting by Michele Bledsoe


“It took me four years to paint like Raphael, but a lifetime to paint like a child.”  Pablo Picasso

I am not sure what it means “to paint like a child” to Picasso..

but I know what it means to me.

To paint like a child does not mean a return to the artistic skill level of a toddler.

Scribbles and stick figures. Blobs of random colors. Lopsided animals.

To paint like a child is to paint with abandon.. a complete lack of inhibition and restraint.

When you put a piece of paper in front of a child

they don’t agonize over what to draw.

They don’t make preliminary sketches or thumbnail drawings.

They don’t concern themselves with composition or concepts.

They don’t follow trends or make statements.

They don’t worry about what it means..

They just start drawing.


When I paint, I  put a blob of raw umber acrylic paint on my palette,

pick up a paintbrush and start drawing on the canvas until it is done.

When the drawing is finished – I paint it.

That’s it.

Stream of consciousness..

the painting becomes whatever it wants to be.

That’s how every one of my paintings begins..

And that’s how every illustration in The Secret Kingdom came to be.

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