Pablo Picasso once said “every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once he grows up.”
Translation: everyone’s creative until they’re told not to be. It’s common practise to this day. Kids enjoy drawing, coloring, and painting. Then they get to adolescence and authority figures tell them to drop it and pursue a safer, stable profession.
One budding young artist, however, has gone against the grain and refused to let the suits quash his artistic instincts.
Nine-year-old Joe Whale kept getting into trouble for doodling at school.
Instead of putting a stop to his abilities, his father, Greg, decided to send him to an after-school art class. His teacher, bowled over by the talent, then posted his work on Instagram, where a Shrewsbury restaurant got in contact and asked if Joe fancied decorating an entire wall of their establishment.
Greg said: “Joe is a really talented little boy, he’s excelling at school, he’s a great footballer and cricketer, but drawing is definitely what he is most passionate about. It’s actually quite annoying, he’s better than me at most things.
“He was in school getting frustrated at the little amount of art he could do so he used to doodle on the table’s whiteboard in class and get into trouble for doodling. His mum and I decided to get him into an art class outside of school called Bloom, he’s been there for about six weeks and he loves every minute of it.”
Greg continued: “His drawings blew his teacher away and they gave him his own wall to keep doodling on which he does every week when he goes there.
“A few weeks into his classes, his teacher asked if she could post his work on her Instagram for everyone to see and a short while later we got another call from her about a restaurant who had seen his work.
“They wanted to get Joe into their restaurant to complete an art piece on their wall, and it was in their main dining area, we were over the moon.
“I asked Joe and he of course leapt at the chance to do it so we have been going there after school where for a couple of hours a night he’ll put his creativity on their wall.
“Joe loves doodling and we’re so proud of everything he’s achieving, the fact that a completely independent business has asked our nine-year old son to do a professional piece of work for them is incredible.”
Joe’s art teacher said that she recognized his eye for drawing straight away.
She said: “I first met Joe several weeks ago, he was a bit frustrated at school because he couldn’t doodle as much as he wanted to and had been asked to stop,” Kerry said. “I asked his parents for some of his work to assess his level and could not believe what I was looking at, we moved him into an older class straight away.
“His work is very exact and immaculate, it’s very balanced, he goes straight to ink and creates perfect work straight from the start, no practicing beforehand.”
Good to see him doing well!