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Animal Drawings
working on compositionsThere are two ways that children between the ages of three and five make animals. One is by subtraction and reorientation. By reducing the number of radiations, or arms and legs, and turning the figure so that it is parallel with the ground line, the drawing becomes an animal with a front leg and a back leg. A round circle provides a face, because animals continue to ware faces much like the human face. The beginning schema for an animal is a body in profile, but the head is identical to the human face in symmetry - two eyes, a nose and a mouth - which looks out at the viewer. There is no profile and generally the animal characteristics are restricted to the addition of ears, or tail.

The other way of drawing animals is by using the identical schema that is used to draw a human, that is upright, but varying the shape and position of the ears. A bear or a rabbit will have ears on the top of their head. A human has ears on the sides. The human drawing and the animal drawing will match in their upright orientation, their symmetry from left to right, and that all parts face forward: the face, the body, the arms and legs are visible on a frontal plain. The animal is just a variation of the human composition. A few details changed.

Michael, Age 4