Sunday, November 27, 2011

Our Color zoO!

Inspired by our artist of the month, Lois Ehlert the first graders created collaged animals from their imagination. First we read both Color Zoo and Color Farm by Lois Ehlert, and then we talked about collaging, how to create lines and shapes without drawing them. I did a quick demonstration and then I put out heaps of construction paper pieces (great way to use up odds and ends!) and boxes full of shapes (recycled this, that, and the other!) These are the best days in art class, I love listening to their imaginations run wild while digging through the recycled objects-- ear, a paw, or a pair of wings with every new shape they discovered. The biggest challenge for the first graders was not drawing any details, rather finding an object that resembled what they had in mind. Cheers to collaged paper- it's a great medium.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Polka Dot Painting

As we begin "Pretty Polka-Dotted Pigs on Parade," the first graders spent their time in art class today painting polka dots using a variety of corks (small, large, various textures) and tempera paint on large sheets of colored construction paper. We talked about rhythm, movement, shapes and patterns before I let them go wild with the corks. As I talked with students and listened to conversation throughout the room, it was interesting to hear what they were seeing in the simple cork designs! One student discovered "roots" produced by the cork's printed texture in the paint.  Some saw globes, clouds, and rivers as the paint mixed on the paper, and others created objects in dots such as cats and castles. Polka dotting will continue during their next art class as many students didn't finish today, experiementation and converstation was a great use of our time.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Starry Night Interpretations

Second Grade interpretations of Van Gogh's Starry night. My students really enjoyed this video, Van Gogh Starry Night which we viewed prior to starting the lesson. Day one, we talked about landscapes and sketched a mountain range, and sky scape. Day 2, we went in with oil pastel and outlined and added our own version of "mark making" to create rhythm after learning about Van Gogh's style of painting.  Day 3: We added textured swirls in the sky scape using glitter gel and tiny sequins. We also added a collaged element in the sky (swirls) and the foreground (plants and village buildings.) This lesson took between 4 and 5 class periods to finish, I set up centers in the room to allow my students to work at their own pace. This is something I hope to do more and more of, self directed, self paced, creative experiences.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Panda Puppets

I think I loved this project as much as the kindergartners did! This was a simple 1-1.5 day lesson introducing  pandas, and collages facial expressions. The project began with a simple information book on pandas. The text and images gave the students a brief introductory to their appearance, habitat, diet, location.. etc. As always, this was a great time to allow students to share brief tide bits of their knowledge-base, such as what pandas eat--- "bamboo, bamboo, THEY EAT BAMBOO MISS STEWART!" The puppet was a simple plate with construction paper pieces and googly eyes. I attached another 1/2 plate pocket on the back of the plate to turn it into a hand puppet. It was fun to see the pandas parading to the bus on the hands of the kindergartners that day after school :)

Monday, November 7, 2011

Impressionism @ MAM

Beautiful  Impressionsm collection, "Impressionism: Master works on paper" on display at the Milwaukee Art Museum now through January 8th, one stop for the traveling show. I spent Sunday wandering the display of master's work, and left scrambling for pastels truly inspired by this collection. I enjoyed the collection of sketches displayed amongst the completed pencil, chalk, gouche, and watercolor works. If you're in the Milwaukee area I would recommend catching this show, check it out here: A few of my students came to class excited to share that they had been to the exhibition and saw drawings by our artist of the month, Van Gogh.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Houses in Munich

I really enjoy the simplicity, and color choice in this particular drawing.

 Collaged "Houses in Munich' inspired by Wassily Kandinsky. The third grade students used oil pastels to achieve similar marks to Kandinsky's oil painted canvas. I demonstrated sketching the drawing out in pencil, then outlining in black oil pastel before adding color, so that some of the black oil pastel would smear into their other colors. Some students really enjoyed this aesthetic, others chose to keep their drawing very neat. To emphasis certain areas of the drawing, they added black construction paper cut into window, door, bridge, and building shapes. Some students just added a portion of black paper to a each building, others covered entire buildings, both good choices! The most challenging part of this drawing for the students was deciding how much collaged paper to add, I left it rather opened ended and followed up when they asked with "well, what do you think? Remember it's your drawing" ...many times. The never ending question!

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Tree of Life (Part 2)

Third Grade: “Tree of Life” watercolor paintings. Part one: object printing with found objects and black paint (see previous post!) Part two: embellishing with an assortment of watercolors. I found glitter watercolors and metallic watercolors, both added great surface textures. Needless to say, but I’ll say it anyway…I’m yet to meet an elementary student who doesn’t enjoy a dab of glitter.