In this research, the focus was on the portrayal of an imaginary character which children in pre-adolescence period created in their paintings on the basis of a conceptual realism rather than an effort to establish a visual similarity. The paintings of the children were examined and the processes in which children go through while painting were observed. The obtained data were analyzed via content analysis technique. The sample of the research consisted of 37 children between 9-12 years old. In the first study, the children were requested to portray someone from their immediate surroundings. In the second study, the children were asked to portray the main character of a song called “Pala Remzi” which did not have any representative visual but included an imaginary character. The process and results of two studies were observed separately and then compared. As a result, it has been concluded that the main factor for children to find their paintings successful or unsuccessful was related to the similarity of the images used in the paintings to the reality. It was also observed that the imitation concern could be prevented when there has not been the probability of comparing between the images and reality.
Keywords: Realism stage, child paintings, creativity, imitation concern