Saturday, July 10, 2010

Drawing Your Child

In my next four blogs, I’m going to go over some great ideas I got at some of the workshops given at the Compassionate Friends Conference July 2-4. My first idea deals with doing a freehand pencil drawing of your child to always treasure.

Let me emphasize you do not have to be artistic to do this. The finished product will definitely be an unbelievable likeness that you can show to others and/or display in your home.

Make an 8 x 10 Xerox copy of a picture of your child’s face. (You can also do a 5 x 7 Xerox.) Do a one inch square grid in pencil over the copy of the 8 x 10 or a ½ inch grid over the 5 x 7. Then take a clean piece of paper, make an 8 x 10 or 5 x 7 box and start copying wherever you want on a clean sheet of paper. Inch by inch, square by square, you are copying a particular feature of the face that is in that one inch square grid. It is such a small space you are working with, that it will be easy to follow the lines and shadowing.

When you get to the eyes, nose and mouth, you might want to take two 1 inch squares and do together, if easier to make a smoother transition. Or you can still continue with the 1 inch at a time. The teacher was always there to help the parents who became a little frustrated, but mostly she traveled the room and encouraged everyone to keep going, knowing it would turn out well. This is a technique that dates back to the Egyptians and is an excellent way to draw a likeness of a picture.

“Drawing and painting my daughter after she died made me feel like I was still with her,” said Jeneane Lunn, teacher of the class. “When you draw something, you are able to see it more clearly. Participants are both surprised and pleased with how well they turn out.”

As I walked around the packed room of almost 100 people, each parent was very immersed in what they were doing and trying to be very precise. It felt almost like an important goal they were aiming for to honor their child, and I was simply amazed at the likeness of the actual picture and the drawing each participant made. At the end of the session, you could see these smiling parents proudly sharing their work with others in the room and amazed at how well the drawings turned out.

No matter what the results, you will appreciate the time you get to spend drawing your child and the way it will make you feel closer to him/her.


  1. Hello, Just a quick note that I've ordered your new book tonight. We lost our 9 year old daughter Sofia a bit over 4 weeks ago and are struggling through the days. I would never understood before just how exhausting grief can be. Every moment you are on the edge of breaking down...

  2. This is such a wonderful idea! I am going to try it.

    I am so very sorry for your terrible loss. I lost my 10 year old son last August. I know how deep the pain is for you right now and my heart aches for you. You will learn to survive and live and honor your precious girl. It is POSSIBLE. Find gratitude in the tiniest of things. MAKE yourself do it until you believe it just might be a good thing to still be alive to remember and honor your daughter.

    I hope it helps you to hear you can survive. I had no one who had lost a child who could tell me that, & when I finally found someone, it was like a lifeline, a breath of air, a candle in a deep cave. bless you and may you find moments of deep peace and joyous memory.

  3. Wonderful site. What a stunning idea to draw your loved one. Thanks for doing what you do! Hugs!