Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Fantastic Friday with the Arts - Tissue Paper Forsythia

While perusing my favorite blogs recently, I came across a must do art activity. Pink and Green Mama posted a fantastic art project using paint and tissue paper to recreate the flowering plant, Forsythia. I love to see Forsythia in the spring, and the thought of a classroom full of painted Forsythia sounded exciting! I decided to have my small art class give this project a try. We followed the directions listed on Pink and Green Mama's blog. Here is a link to the activity on her blog - Pink and Green Mama: Easy Kid Spring Art Craft: Tissue Paper Forsythia

1. The kids used a straw to blow very watered down tempera paint into the shape of Forsythia branches.

2. Next, they painted small green leaves around the branches.

3. Then the kids glued on crinkled pieces of yellow tissue paper to represent the Forsythia blooms.

4. Voila!! The finished Forsythia plants! Hang these in your home and it can look like springtime all year round!

Thanks Pink and Green Mama for the wonderful and fun Forsythia activity!!

Friday, April 23, 2010

Fantastic Friday with the Arts - Joan Miro

Joan Miro was a Spanish artist who developed a very whimsical style back in the 1930’s. His painting called “People and Dog in Sun” is a fun one to imitate by drawing stick figures and stars.

1. Give each student a 9" x 12" piece of watercolor paper and pencil. They are to draw one large stick figure in the middle, preferably in some action pose. Miro often repeated shapes in his work so ask the students to add more shapes to their art but ONLY by using lines and dots. At least two of the shapes need to intersect (overlap) to make more shapes to color.

2. After the pencil drawing is done, the students need to trace it heavily with a black crayon.

3. Have the students fill in all the shapes they have made with a different color.

Have a super time creating your own Miro's! Check back next week for a new lesson based on a different artist. See you then!

Friday, April 9, 2010

Fantastic Friday with the Arts - Japanese Folding Screens

Japanese artists make the loveliest folding screens, carved with designs and painted black. Some are made from wood frames and have hand-painted silk stretched in each panel. The paintings are often of flowers or landscapes. The Japanese also have a love for things that are very small, so miniature table top screens are a popular decoration. This week my art class made their own miniature paper folding screens to hold their favorite photos.

For this project, I asked each child to bring in four photos that they would like to have on their screen. I also had magazines on hand the day of the lesson for those kids who forgot to bring in their photos. Those kids were able to cut out pictures from the magazines to use on their screen.

The first step in this project is to fold construction paper to make their screens. Each child needs 2 pieces of 9"x12" paper. Both papers need to be folded in fourths in a fan type of fold. On one of the pieces, cut a small photo window at the top of each folded section. I did this step for the kids with an exacto knife. Next, tape one photo behind each photo window. Glue the second 9"x12"piece of paper to the back of the first to create the backside of the screen and to give the screen strength.

It is now time to paint the designs. We used black watercolor paint to simulate the black india ink that would be used by real Japanese screen artists. Black marker could be used as well. I printed out pictures of flowers for the kids to look at for ideas.

I also printed out some simple Japanese words in case they wanted to put some Japanese writing on their screen. They really seemed to enjoy painting the real Japanese characters.

This lessons is also a great time to teach the kids about the art of calligraphic line painting. Based on oriental calligraphy or "beautiful writing," calligraphic line is characterized by variations of line width and the power of a simple line to convey a complex feeling. I encouraged the students to use black ink with various sizes of brushes and sticks, practice making marks with different widths, directions and pressure.

Here is a finished miniature folding screen. This will make a terrific table decoration!

The kids seemed to really enjoy this project. They liked exploring the art of a different culture, and anytime they can include photos of their loved ones in an art project, it is a big hit!

MckLinky Blog Hop

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Spunky Jack Russell

My husband just completed this digital portrait of our energetic puppy in a rare inquisitive moment. She is usually burning a trail in the backyard.

This image is painstakingly drawn/painted digitally with no photo manipulation.
It is essential to him that the process mimic traditional drawing and painting techniques.
He is currently using a Intuos 3 Wacom tablet with Corel Painter X.

Portraits make great gifts for friends and family - know anyone with a birthday coming up? Check out my husband's website - we have a quick and easy way to order that special portrait.