The little guy in the picture above was inspired by my mother, and Marcel. Both gave me the idea to let Aidan create his own miniature pet rocks. My Mom has had a small, smooth, gray rock for as long as I can remember in the house growing up, with two little blue eyes painted on it. My mom was the professional artist of my childhood and has pieces of her work all over her house, including her pet rock, which I vividly remember staring at me at the breakfast table in the morning, among the condiments on the lazy susan. A few months ago my mom sent Aidan his own pet rock that she made for him. He carried it around in his pocket outside for weeks, he even lost it a couple of times. It was only found and returned each time by the neighbor boy because of those blue eyes my mother gave it. Aidan has a fondness for rocks. He collects them everywhere we go and has even attempted to pick them out of asphalt if they look cool enough. His collection has grown to fill small buckets and before I knew it I was imagining faces on those rocks.
Now Marcel is not someone I'm related to. Marcel is a shell, with shoes on. Marcel gained attention on the Internet when her creator posted videos of her on Youtube. A friend of mine introduced me to Marcel last year, and her simple humor made me laugh. Marcel came out with a children's book recently. It's funny, just like her, but the font is a little hard to read, and Aidan understood about half of her jokes, because some your typical preschooler would not get. Aidan did ask for my husband to read this book several times though because he gave Marcel a french accent, and it was funny to see a shell sleep in her "breadroom," a piece of bread.
One afternoon I presented Aidan with a few activities to choose from, he went with the rocks of course. Painting his favorite pocket fillers sounded too good to pass up. I set out some acrylic paints, several different sized brushes, and he picked out some rocks, and seashells from our last trip to the beach, from his stash.