Brina Schenk and The Proud Art Post

There are a few moments and experiences that have lead me to where I am right now. It feels serendipitous as if there’s nothing else I should be doing. 

  • My two kids have inspired me the most, their desire to draw every day and show me what they’ve created. They know I’m proud of all the art they do and how they are progressing.
     
  • Over the past year, I have helped create a few kid’s art programs through The Arts Station and I am amazed by the focus and attention each child puts into their artwork. I know kids can get distracted fairly quickly but when we work on a creative project together, we always run out of time.
     
  • After I led my daughter’s Grade 1 class in a step-by-step drawing, the teacher approached me and told me, “That was art therapy.” Students in the class who usually have a hard time focusing on tasks spent an entire hour fully engaged in one single drawing.
     
  • Private art lessons with a few local boys have given me an intimate look at the joy of drawing. Offering a few suggestions and tips along the way, we, for the most part, just have fun drawing and being silly with our creations. I was inspired by my husband’s fun-focused way of teaching our kids how to mountain bike and ski. He’s more about the time spent together on the mountain, being silly and exploring than learning proper technique.

These experiences and inspirations have sent me on a new journey - designing and creating a global drawing program for kids. It’s called The Proud Art Post. The Proud Art Post is a subscription art program with new art challenges mailed to our young artists as they are completed. My first goal was to get kids drawing more. The more we draw, the better we get, the more confident we feel. It’s common for children to stop drawing around the age of 10 because they want to draw more realistically but don’t have the skills or confidence to draw the way want to. So the pencils and markers get put away for a while. I’m living proof of this. I didn’t start drawing again until I was in my 20s.

Art, at any age, is extremely beneficial. It’s a way to relate, tell stories, release, recollect, remember and heal. For kids, creating art is beneficial for their confidence, fine motor and cognitive development but it also gives them an opportunity for a bit of quiet in their day and for developing empathy. Art challenges children and can inspire a lifetime of drawing for the fun of it.

 As a professional, drawing and creating and producing new art isn’t an easy task. I need to keep working every day on myself, to stay motivated. Work hard. Keep dreaming. Don’t stop. It’s easy to find other ways to spend your free time and then, eventually, inevitably, I’ll feel as though there’s something missing in my life.

I am 42 and I’m still learning every time I pick up a pencil. I don’t imagine I’ll stop learning and growing as an artist. My goal is to keep drawing almost every day and I’ll continue to encourage kids to draw as much as they can because even if you don’t love what you’re drawing, it’s good for the heart and the soul.