Living in a household with two photographers, Lucia our 19 month old daughter, has really become comfortable with having cameras around. Unfortunately we have not given her the opportunity to play with ours. The thought of our toddler breaking our equipment was scary. Still, we had the feeling we were depriving her of something by not allowing her to see first hand what we do. Interestingly enough I came across an article on education.com about the importance of art for children of a young age. This article talked about how children in the modern world are seen as though they do not know anything, and any attempt at art is seen as insignificant or not good enough.
Children on the other hand have not been trained to be self-critical and perfect, and when this genuineness is portrayed in any form of art it should not be ignored. When a child is taught to be creative they enjoy to learn because they are allowed to express what they see and feel. They are allowed to be spontaneous and without inhibitions. Art allows a child complete freedom of speech in a world that teaches them the “right” way to think on a daily basis. This article made me realize that teaching my daughter the art of photography would help her in the future with her education, her relationship with teacher’s, and even the way she views herself.
So with that in mind we decided to give it a try and give our daughter an old film camera that we had in storage. We loaded the camera with film and showed her, or at least tried to show her how to take a picture. It was very clear that with her being a toddler we were going to be lucky if she even held the camera upright. We were very patient and after about an hour we got her to open her eyes while looking through the viewfinder. Once she realized she could see the world through the little hole she was filled with excitement! That day she only took about two pictures, but as parents seeing our daughter interested in something we love so much was amazing.
We want to show our daughter how to express herself through art. If her art of choice is photography then we plan to encourage her to play, and be spontaneous. We will eventually develop what she shoots, and you never know, she might have a special way of capturing the world with her camera.
Here are some of the pictures Maritza took of her that day.
Lucia, the youngest photographer in Colorado…at least that we know of.