The art of Mr. Matisse evolved over the years mostly due to his health issues, but I admire that he found a way to continue creating. I find it interesting how he reduced his compositions to the basic elements of LINE and COLOR.
Simplifying a composition is definitely not simple! Reducing a piece of art to its most basic elements is very difficult indeed!
In looking over some of my sacred children's songs to prepare them to possibly submit for the new LDS Children's Songbook, I have thought about Matisse and his cut-outs. I have felt that I must strip down my little songs to even more basic elements. Musical elements can also be reduced to LINE and COLOR. But in music, those basic elements are called MELODY, RHYTHM and HARMONY.
So, I have been working to edit these little songs into staves and measures that will fit onto just one or possibly two pages. The type must be large enough and look uncluttered enough for a typical Primary pianist to read easily. The lyrics must be placed between the staves with the melody easy to follow. Any supporting harmony must be no more than three notes and in not more than one octave intervals per hand. The words must be on the level of a 6 to 8 year old child with enough imagery that visual aides can readily be created for ease of teaching. Simplified guitar chords must be placed over the upper staff. And that's just the partial list!
DO THESE PARAMETERS SOUND SIMPLE TO YOU?
See if you can detect the changes I had to make to get this one to fit onto just two pages. I fudged a little bit to keep the accompaniment passage that I just couldn't part with. Keeping the word count down was particularly heart-wrenching. Did I cut it down too much?