Introduction to this Stone Soup Art Activity

Hares are a bit like rabbits, and this picture from Hungary by Katalin Kiss, 13, shows a group of people hunting hares for food. Look carefully at the picture. There is a lot going on! There are thirteen people, nine hares, four houses, four trees, bells, bags, sticks, a fence, clouds, and there is even a well.

This picture is in one color only, but look at all the detail in the men’s clothing. Some men wear hats, some don’t. There are a couple of styles of trousers, of boots, shoes, shirts. What is most amazing to me about this picture is the way each figure is posed. Everyone, including the dogs, is doing something. The characters are frozen in time, in the midst of moving, as we might see them in a snapshot.

Project: Capturing an Active Moment

Like Katalin, make a drawing in one color. Katalin’s picture is a linoleum print or lino cut, but you will probably use pencil or pen. For a subject, choose something where lots of people (at least six) are doing something active. Following Katalin’s example, capture the movements of each person in the scene at the moment you freeze the action.

Examples of subjects you might choose where you could “catch” a number of people in interesting positions are in sports, people working together building or repairing something, a family working or playing together, chefs in a kitchen cooking, all the different activities in a railway station or airport, or people buying groceries in a supermarket. In this last example you could show someone leaning over a shopping basket dropping something in, a couple of people walking down an aisle, a child reaching out to touch something on a shelf, and a worker unpacking boxes of cereal. The more people you can show making different gestures, the more interesting your picture will be.

Whatever subject you choose for your picture, follow Katalin’s example and use the entire paper for your scene—from the top of the paper to the bottom.

From the March/April 1986 Issue of Stone Soup

Art Activity Collecting Wild Hares

Capturing Wild Hares, by Katalin Kiss, 13, Hungary

About the Author

In 1973, I was twenty years old, teaching children's art classes at my college, the University of California, Santa Cruz, and came up with the idea that the best way to encourage children to write was to introduce them to the best writing by their peers. Stone Soup grew out of that idea, and I have continued to publish Stone Soup for all these years.
I am also a culinary historian. I write about traditional foodways. My book, "The Magic of Fire," is about hearth cooking. My book, "Bread, a global history," speaks for itself. I am currently writing a bread history for a University Press. I publish articles on gardening and traditional foodways at Mother Earth News. I also publish on wild mushrooms and other food-related subjects.

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