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Old 04-25-2012, 05:10 AM
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LMWilliams LMWilliams is offline
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Question What to do with the husband/kids?

I'm new to the whole experience of drawing and painting outside but it's something I'd love to pursue rather then work entirely from photograph. My main distraction from doing this are my young family who along with my fidgety husband, have no interest in waiting for me to finish being creative, so out comes the camera and I'm back to square one. I see their point. If we're out on a family outing it's not entirely fun for one member to whip out their sketchbook every ten minutes to become completely absorbed in something else. It doesn't help my husband isn't creative that way and has no interest in joining me and my children are far too young to join in as well (2 year old and a 5 month old).

So what are your tips on keeping them occupied whilst I do a few drawings etc? I'm thinking about sending them off for 20min and meeting up later. Does anyone else have this dilemma? Should I distract them with food?
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Old 04-25-2012, 05:50 AM
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Re: What to do with the husband/kids?

Always a problem. I have a tolerant wife who like to knit or crochet while I sketch. On tours I often forgo guided tours of cathedrals etc to stay outside and sketch. A lot can be achieved whilst your spouse is having a snack or a coffee in the square.

Doug
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Old 04-25-2012, 08:23 AM
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Studio-1-F Studio-1-F is offline
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Re: What to do with the husband/kids?

Hi, LM! This exact topic was discussed at length in the thread "Sketching Etiquette". There were a lot of very good suggestions offered as to how to handle the young fidgety family aspect of plein air outings. Your instinct is spot on: distract them! I hope you can find some good advice there.

Jan
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Old 04-25-2012, 09:13 AM
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Re: What to do with the husband/kids?

Yorky- Thanks for you comments. I think I'm going to have to find a moment like you do to sneak off and draw away from them all.

Jan- a fabulous link, thank you, and your comment on there was particularly helpful!
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Old 04-25-2012, 12:08 PM
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Re: What to do with the husband/kids?

It wouldn't seem to me that you could solve this alone, especially regarding who watches the children.

I was a dedicated runner years ago before I married. My wife, a lawyer, chose to delay her career to have children. So, she was home all day with our daughter and understandably did not appreciate my need to run 3-4 days a week at the previous schedule. We had to work it out together. The details do not matter so much as we found times for me to run that worked for her and time-off for her to do things that mattered to her. There were still times together with our kid(s).
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Old 04-28-2012, 12:52 AM
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manfrommerriam manfrommerriam is offline
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Re: What to do with the husband/kids?

You need to get him a girlfriend. Failing that, learn to setup and draw very quickly. Carry a tiny pad and a pen that requires no fussing about... such as the Microns. As the little darlings age teach them, (and perhaps that girl friend) to draw.
Have fun, Dave
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Old 04-28-2012, 07:25 AM
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Re: What to do with the husband/kids?

That's a tough one. I would suggest sticking to the camera for now and establish a routine of getting a sitter to watch the kids once a month to start out with. Your hubby will probably be more prone to support you if he isn't being pressured to watch the kids.
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Old 04-28-2012, 09:11 AM
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Re: What to do with the husband/kids?

I save the plein air when I've got ME time, or when as a family, we are just out relaxing, like dining outside, or the beach when everyone is occupied and the sketching isn't taking away from the moment or adding undue stress to it.

For all other times, it's camera time.
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Old 04-28-2012, 12:37 PM
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Re: What to do with the husband/kids?

Quote:
Originally Posted by LMWilliams
Jan- a fabulous link, thank you, and your comment on there was particularly helpful!
I'm glad it was useful. You adjust to their needs, but part of their job is also to adjust to yours. You are all in this family adventure thing together. Right? Keep your chin up!

Jan
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Old 04-28-2012, 04:02 PM
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Re: What to do with the husband/kids?

My wife hikes with the dog while I paint. When she comes back after a couple of hours, I know I need to be done!
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Old 04-28-2012, 08:35 PM
James or Jimmy Jim James or Jimmy Jim is offline
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Re: What to do with the husband/kids?

Hi Lianne,

Some good comments here ... however, I would suggest divorce and adoption.

Okay, maybe not.
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Old 04-28-2012, 09:39 PM
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Re: What to do with the husband/kids?

does your hubby like fishing?

do you have a baby back pack?

the oldest will probably throw things in the water
and run around between you and dad...
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Old 04-29-2012, 07:59 PM
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Re: What to do with the husband/kids?

Hi,

I feel your frustration. I have two little ones and I actually started plein air painting just so I could have ME time! They just would not leave me alone long enough for me to paint in the studio. I also have a special needs child so the time commitment was huge. Nonetheless, my husband wanted me to have time to myself and so he was completely supportive. I remember one year he asked what I wanted for a mother's day present and I said "I want to go out and paint all afternoon!". I also remember painting our old apple tree in the yard with my four-year old watching over my shoulder and asking questions every two minutes. Children are harsh critics.

My advice to you is forget trying to paint when you're out with your family. This just leads to frustration. Unless there are other people around who can entertain the kids for quite a while, you will just be distracted and annoyed the whole time. I would encourage you instead to find time to do it on your own. A couple of hours on a Saturday, the odd evening after they've gone to bed (I always look forward to the days getting longer for that reason!). Explain to your kids that mommy is just going out to paint and she'll be back soon. Don't feel guilty about it, I'm sure your hubby has things he likes to do... My hubby and I try to give each other a break every weekend - he'll take Saturday afternoon to do his thing and I'll take Sunday morning or something. Sure, I don't paint as much as I'd like, but oh well, they'll be all grown up and gone before we know it! Oh, and carrying a sketchbook and maybe even a watercolour set on family holidays is not a bad idea... you just never know when you might have the opportunity to do a quick sketch. But if you don't get to do it, tell yourself there's always a next time.
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Old 04-29-2012, 11:24 PM
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Re: What to do with the husband/kids?

Hire a baby sitter and send him out to do what he likes.
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Old 05-04-2012, 06:55 PM
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Re: What to do with the husband/kids?

Young wives, especially, feel they need to be at the disposal of their family, especially the small children. I do understand that, and I am sure you are there for their every need and comfort. But you have needs, too. your grown up husband should understand this, and help figure out a way that you can have some alone time, too. Its hard at family picnics I guess, the little ones wouldn't understand your drawing time as easily as your husband would. Perhaps a small sketch book where you can at least look at a scene with a viewfinder and then make your 2 or 3 or 4 value sketches just as you would if you were going paint them----When we paint outdoors, these value sketches help us attain succsess in our paintings and they are normally only 3 x 5 inches or so, done quickly in a small sketch book that is like gold to us, we never loose our little books!!! Also, read all you can about plein-air or sketching outdoors, maybe you already do. But when it comes time for you - - -you will be ready. Just use your pencils, and cross-hatch for the different values, remember to simplify each scene Good luck!
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