For the month of March I will be participating in the Slice of Life Challenge sponsored by The Two Writing Teachers Blog. Each day I will be sharing a Quick Write as my way of slicing. The idea is to offer a SPARK that will kindle thinking and then write as quickly as you can for 5-10 minutes. No filters, no revisions. I’ve been curating a collection of Sparks and will share some with you all month. It’s a great way to ignite your writing life.
This form of prose or poetry is inspired or stimulated by a work of art; the goal is to make the reader envision the art described as if it were physically present. The word ekphrastic is derived from the Ancient Greeks to mean “description”. I love how the art of writing and the art of painting can become symbiotic in this form. See some examples HERE or check out the book World Make Way: New Poems Inspired by Art from the Metropolitan Museum of Art, edited by Lee Bennett Hopkins (2018)
This is a fun quick write to try with kids when you offer them several examples of art work to choose from and invite them to quick write a description or a poem-ish piece as they look carefully at the paintings. Then if they choose to share, their classmates can try to guess which artwork they are writing about by attending to the description used.
Some pieces of art lend themselves to story, while others may create some dissonance or confusion for our budding art ‘aficionados’. Build up an eclectic collection of art work that spans multiple genres of art. We can build in a few minutes of art appreciation alongside writing and thinking-and that could make our students lives all the richer. Remember-they are quick so they don’t have to be polished or published, they just have to exist as evidence of thinking.
Here’s my quick write: