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MCSA Lockdown Tip 30

MCSA Lockdown Tip 30

Lockdown Day 30 – Still life set up in own home


Too often our days are too fast, too hurried, too ‘superficial’…

As we spend or 30th day together, let’s take some time today to be in the moment, to take ‘time out’ of the world’s current stresses, and to just observe and create.

Today’s activity is about the art of ‘still-life’ or observational drawing. Observational drawing is a great exercise in taking the time to really see what we are looking at and drawing this as realistically and as true to your observation as possible.

This is a different kind of drawing experience. By doing still life drawings, we are aiming to slow ourselves down to notice the small details of life – the shapes, patterns, perspective, colours, textures, shadows, and how all of these details interact with each other.

You may wish to start the activity off by looking at the art of some artists who were famous for their paintings. Perhaps most notably Vincent van Gogh’s sunflowers or Paul Cezanne’s fruit bowls. Also have a look at some South African artists – Isabel le Roux’s flowers are a beautiful example.

This is a wonderful opportunity to come together as a family. It is not about who is the best artist. There cannot be a ‘better’ artist when each person is creating their own representation of what they see!


  • Tablecloth (preferably plain in colour)
  • A Box or small table to place the items on.
  • Objects of your choice – a bowl of fruit, a vase of flowers, a special clock, a pretty lamp etc. Each person in the house may like to contribute one item to the table to create the ‘scene’ to be drawn.
  • A4 white paper
  • Any drawing medium of your choice: pencils, pencil crayons, wax crayons, pastels, water colour paints etc.


  • Drape the cloth over the table/box. You may wish to keep it smooth, or you may wish to have folds in the fabric. Be as creative as you like! Arrange the items that your still life will be made up of on top of the tablecloth.
  • Give each person an A4 page and a hard A4 sized book to press on and allow each person to choose the medium they wish to use.
  • Put on some quiet music (or not)!
  • Sit about a metre away from the still-life, observe, and start drawing!
  • Sign and date your artworks when done.


Once all the drawings have been completed, you may wish to put them up next to each other, or around the objects you have created.

You can have an interesting discussion around the differences, similarities, perspectives, colours etc in the individual paintings. This can be a good exercise in teaching (or reminding) ourselves that life is really all about perspective!

Remember to keep your drawings in a safe place. These are always fun to look back on in the years to come.


We would love to see some of your creations!