Originally Posted by boysrus
so, from those two links, it looks like Eli is pretty typical of a 4 yo?
I'm not sure. I LOVE the space rocket one, absolutely love it. The projection line, IMO, is not typical for 4. I mean, there are two aspects of drawing at this age, I think. One is the level of detail. There's actually a drawing test (Goodenough Test?) that estimates IQ based on how detailed a young child draws a human figure. They get points for adding things like eyebrows and things. That's why, to me, that 4yo drawing on one of links is not typical, because I don't know any 4yos that draw knees and such on human figures. I mean, it happens, but it's not typical, IME.
The other aspect is the conceptual level. There are some art concepts that most children do not grasp until a later age. For example, my son uses occlusion in drawing, which is to draw something so that it appears behind something else. He drew a building with the front of a car protruding on one side and the back protruding from the other side of the building, because the car was parked in a parking lot behind the building, he said. That's an advanced concept, but the level of detail in that drawing was not that great. Then there's perspective, drawing to suggest motion, using multiple base lines, drawing to suggest distance (like your son's rockets)....lots of concepts to suggest a certain degree of sophistication.
There's a link I was looking for and cannot find. It was a paper based on Eisner in which children's drawings were analyzed to understand typical art development. It went into occlusion and using more than one base line, etc. I think there were like 13 or 14 different levels of art development in children. Anyway, I will look for it again, but I'm not sure if I can find it. I tried google; hopefully, I bookmarked it.
To me, the first drawing doesn't look atypical for the age. But the second drawing with the rockets flying off into space in that arch, that one looks very sophisticated.