chapter  2
25 Pages

The Tadpole Figure

Introduction The young child's first drawings of the human figure are rather curious in that they seem to consist only of a head, which may include facial features, and legs; if the arms are present, they are attached to the head (see Fig. 2.1). Some other items may be added too, such as hair, ears, hands and feet, but indications that the figure has a tummy or a torso are extremely rare; indeed, the definition of a tadpole form is generally held to be a head-legs figure which has no distinct torso drawn separately from the head (Cox & Parkin, 1986; Cox, 1992). These kinds of figure were noted by Ricci (1887) and have been called cephalopods as well as tadpole figures.