Summer Camp Lunchtime Doodles June 2015: Arty Tricks in Torino…

You draw is very beautiful! Is very good!” Awww, you’re too kind, kids…

That is what I doodly-do when I do summer camps. I get sketching, mesmerise Italian children with my doodles and then bat away their compliments because I’m not Moebius and am therefore not satisfied with my artistic (in)ability. Regardless, when I’m away in Italy I really look to raise my game and get art action on and amped up to a higher frequency. I do this because: 1. Camps require arts and crafts and visual didactic materials; 2. Italian children love drawing and love looking at drawings and art is a great communicative art and means of providing entertainment; 3. I love doodling and it makes me feel good and when you’re in a beautiful place with beautiful people feeling good anyway, yeah, perché no?

Drawing is fun, but it’s most fun when you’re doing it for and/or with children because of their childishness (‘good childishness’ in terms of a sense of wonder, curiosity, playfulness and an open-hearted and ever-present willingness to be amazed). At summer camp, the best drawing time is at lunchtime and that’s because I’ve sorta-kinda created a tradition of ‘lunchtime diary doodles’ (like these from two years ago! And these from last year! And those! And yeah, them as well!).

To entertain (and potentially educate) i bambini, to keep myself amused, to practice my craft and to keep a chronicle of camp, I thus do these doodly-doodlings on paper placemats every day. I’m a sucker for rituals and short-term compulsive creative projects so naturally when I arrived at this new school in Torino one of the first questions I asked was “Erm, you have paper placemats in the canteen, right?

They did, so I did my daily sketch journals and they were all uploaded onto Instagram for the interwebs to see if they wanted. The kids, the other English tutors and the school’s teachers liked ’em. My personal fanclub of sweet Italian children loved them and were fascinated by them. (Any time I’m lonely and feeling unloved I can just remember that I’m like an inky-fingered rock star to several select bands of bambini back in bella Italia.)

To gather them altogether in one place, what follows is the full collection of sketches from this June’s camp in Torino. For the record, the camp (run by Lingue Senza Frontiere) was superhero-themed and that explains the occasional cameo from Captain America or Batman. Also, each day had a different focus topic and specific activities like ‘Food Day’, ‘Talent Show’, ‘Water Day’ (a.k.a. ‘Maliciously Soak the Kids and Destroy Them All In A Water Balloon Battle Day’) and a ‘Lo Spettacolo’ final show ran as well and are alluded to. I won’t go into detail annotating them – though there are a lot of in-jokes, Easter eggs, esoteric references and parts where my subconscious/psyche/mental state are bleeding out onto paper, it’s all pretty self-explanatory. And if it isn’t self-explanatory, “please, accept the mystery” and drive yourself wild coming up with theories or psychoanalytical assessments of where my head and heart are at.

Without much further ado, let’s get into the lunchtime doodle action from the two weeks in Torino. Pronto? Allora, andiamo

DAY ONE (contains a SuperPig)

Lunchtime Doodles from English Summer Camp in Italy: Day 1…

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DAY TWO (contains a Supreme Warrior Sheep)

Lunchtime Doodles from English Summer Camp in Italy: Day 2…

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DAY THREE (contains a robot that has fallen in love)

Lunchtime Doodles from English Summer Camp in Italy: Day 3…

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DAY FOUR (contains a penguin… on the Moon)

Lunchtime Doodles from English Summer Camp in Italy: Day 4…

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DAY FIVE (contains a magical unicorn that can cut through paradimensional fabrics and cross Time and Space using her rainbow horn)

Lunchtime Doodles from Summer Camp in Italy: Day 5…

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DAY SIX (contains a slice of singing Opera Pizza)

Lunchtime Doodles from English Summer Camp in Italy: Day 6…

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DAY SEVEN (contains Power-Patrizia: the Super Cyborg Panda)

 

Lunchtime Doodles from English Summer Camp in Italy: Day 7…

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DAY EIGHT (contains a Sheepfish Psychiatrist)

Lunchtime Doodles from English Summer Camp in Italy: Day 8…

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DAY NINE (contains a dragon that breathes fire, eats humans and sometimes likes to visit museums and watch arty films)

Lunchtime Doodles from English Summer Camp in Italy: Day 9…

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DAY TEN (contains Ultimate Pineapple Hands – the personification of a song I created especially for camp and that has become a fruity cult phenomenon in this bizarro sphere. I think this is one of those occasions where we just drag out “You wouldn’t understand” and move on. “Please, accept the mystery”)

Lunchtime Doodles from English Summer Camp in Italy: Day 10…

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And for bonus extras, here are a few more arty bits from camp. First some doodles I hid around the playground for bonus points during the treasure hunt. No-one found ‘The Third-Best Pizza in the World’…

'Awesome Treasure' for the children to search for in tomorrow's Summer Camp Treasure Hunt…

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… and finally, some interactive playground art. I got really high off this – attacking the ground with oversized chalks to make fantastical photo opportunities for people who didn’t mind lying down and turning their clothes into a pastel mess. The idea was to draw skyscrapers and a cape so that everyone could pose as a soaring superhero. As I eyed up the playground, however, I thought “Yeah, I’d rather draw a monster and right now I’m all about pineapples“. Thus, I chalked up the following public artworks with the monster turning into a fiery manifestation of the diabolical repressed desire to see all these children burn alive (not really… I think). Modeled by yours truly, here’s some Pineapple Power and a Fantastical Flaming Death…

Playground Art from Summer Camp in Italy: my superpowers come from pineapples…

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Playground Art from Summer Camp in Italy: Hot damn! Fire-breathing Kaiju attack…

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And that draws summer camp drawing for June 2015 to a close. I hope you enjoyed the doodlings and I hope I get more opportunities to mess around with more stuff like this in the future because, as I say, it’s just so much fun… 😀

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2 Comments

  1. Homecoming, Hailing the Best Summer and Creative Action Ahead, Ma Dai… | ENTER... JAMES CLAYTON
  2. Summer Camp Lunchtime Doodles August/September 2015: Drawing Pictures in Padova… | ENTER... JAMES CLAYTON

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