Monday, December 2, 2013

Colorful Paul Gauguin Art Lesson

Paul Gauguin used bright flat colors in his tropical artwork and is a favorite artist of mine to teach about. I got the idea for this project from a picture I saw on the  art blog Painting With a Twist. It looked like something Gauguin himself would have had fun with and I knew my students would too!

First we practiced the palm tree on a scratch piece of paper, (since this was the only real difficult part of this whole picture). Once the kids had figured out how to curve the trunk and make the palm fronds we switched to an 11x15 sheet of watercolor paper and redrew the palm tree, then added the background details step by step. I let them fill in the bottom of the picture with their own plants and foliage. Then we outlined everything with Sharpie, and the fun began! The only rule with the paint was to try and paint things as differently from real life as they could. To use their "imagination" like Gauguin did when he painted his pictures. We used vibrant Dick Blick brand liquid watercolors. I did this with K-6th graders and they all turned out great. With the older kids we added white acrylic paint dots with the end of the paint brush for stars. Below are a few of the K-1 finished projects. I got busy and didn't take any  pictures of the older kids' projects, so I will try and post more later.

My Sample

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Keith Haring Mural Art Project

This was a really fun art project that every single child enjoyed. I always forget how much kids like working together on a big project. I did this in both a K-2 class and a 3rd-6th grade class with good results in both. First I introduced Keith Haring to the kids by showing different images of his artwork, and discussed how he got his start as a street artist. His artwork is really appealing to kids( and adults) of all ages.

First, I broke them up into pairs and I gave each pair  a different dancing figure template to trace and then outline with Sharpie, somewhere on several large pieces of butcher paper that I had taped together on the back. They could choose one of 6 acrylic colors to use. Together the two students painted the figure in and re-outlined with a thicker chisel tip black marker.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Paul Klee Art Lesson

This art project is based on one of Paul Klee's most recognized paintings called Cat and Bird-

This is an easy cat a bird to model drawing for all ages.  We practiced drawing the picture on a scratch paper first then did our final drawing in pencil on watercolor paper. We went over the pencil lines with oil pastels-I let them choose which colors they wanted to use-but told them to use a variety of colors. Then we filled in the rest of the picture using chalk pastels similar to the colors Klee used in his work. This worked well for kids k-6th. Below are some of the finished pieces. I think they have the same soft feel of Klee's work.

Charlie Russell Illustrated Letters

This is the third project I did with my 3rd-6th grade class on Charlie Russell. After watching some youtube videos on Charlie Russell and talking about his life and art, I had the kids illustrate a letter  telling someone about him,(like he often did when corresponding with friends), using soft watercolors and western images. They turned out great and the kids really enjoyed this lesson. They decorated the envelopes as well with colored pencils and we mailed them for the final step.

First they did a rough draft on a scratch piece of paper, and then did a final draft on a  piece of watercolor paper cut down to a letter size. The drew in some guidelines in pencil to help keep their writing straight. We used a extra fine line Sharpie for outlining the pictures and the writing.

Below are some of the finished projects.

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Charlie Russell Painting Lesson

This is another Charlie Russell project I just finished with my 3-6 grade class. These kids really enjoyed learning more about this artist. I showed a couple of youtube videos on him and several of his prints. Like I said in my earlier post on Russell, the kids in this small Montana school can really appreciate his art and love looking at the history of their state that he so masterfully portrayed in his pictures.

For this lesson we took one of his paintings called "Just a Little Sunshine" (see below), and I had the students copy the cowboy and horse, while creating their own background. We worked on using a soft touch with the watercolors to try and give the same feel that Charlie Russell had in his work.

I chose this particular painting because I thought it would be an easier picture to copy than most of his paintings which have alot of action in them. I think the kids had alot of success with this project, and they were very proud of their work.

Charlie Russell horse lesson

The next Charlie Russell project I did with my K-2 class was a horse head. We practiced a step by step drawing of this with pencil on a scratch sheet then they did a final one on a sheet of watercolor paper. They outlined the pencil with a black flair pen and then went over the lines with a  damp watercolor brush. I love the look this creates-it was a simple medium to use for these little drawings. Here are some of the finished pictures.