Oct 15, 2016

Paper Plate Flower Collages

My inspiration for this project came from this post at 'Pink Stripey Socks'. They had used four paper plates cut into flower shapes of decreasing size and stapled together. I gave students two paper plates each and one small circle of thick paper for the smallest shape.

I began by asking grade one students to fold their plates in half and drawing a simple pattern of petals around the edge of the semi-circle. They then cut through both layers of the plate (which proved a little difficult for some tiny hands who needed assistance) and unfolded to reveal the whole circle. Once they had cut their three circles, we stapled them together and the children used bright coloured tempera paints to paint their flowers.
Once dry, they also used oil pastels to add more colour and detail and scrap pieces of coloured paper to add leaves and stamen to their flowers. 
They were all quite different and look fantastic displayed together!

Sep 4, 2016

Clay Bird Vessels

These clay bird vessels were made by my grade 4 students recently, inspired by these bird vases from 'Be Creative Mary'. Students rolled a slab of clay and cut a basic bird shape. They then rolled a second slab and traced the first bird shape so they had two identical pieces. The pieces were joined at the head and the tail, leaving the middle section open and unjoined. 
The vessels were stuffed with newspaper for stability whilst texture and decoration were added to the bird using clay tools.
After firing, students added colour by rubbing oil pastels into the surface of the clay to pick up the texture and then painting with coloured inks and dyes. I later added a coat of spray varnish to each piece to seal it. 

Aug 8, 2016

Self Portrait Pinch Pots

This is one of those grade one projects that nearly made me die of cuteness! As a twist on the usual introduction to ceramics, I was inspired by this adorable project from 'Handmade Charlotte'. After students learned to create a pinch pot, I had them make a lid for their pot by rolling out a small slab of clay and tracing the top of their pot to cut a circle to fit as a lid. They rolled and stuck on a small ball of clay to act as a handle for the lid/nose for their face. 

After discussing portraiture and self portraits, students were asked to use ceramic glazes to paint their skin colour, hair colour and facial features in very basic detail using a very small brush. 

Aug 3, 2016

The Red Tree

Image from Shaun Tan's 'The Red Tree'.
Australian Book Week is coming up with the theme this year being 'Australian Stories'. 

These grade three artworks are inspired by the children's book 'The Red Tree', written and illustrated by West Australian author and artist Shaun Tan.

The story is inspired by the experience of depression. The main character is a lonely little girl. Almost unnoticed in each illustration, a red leaf follows the girl throughout her day. On the book's last page, the girl stands smiling at a beautiful red tree, growing in her bedroom. 
 The students and I discussed the symbolism in the book before they created their own artwork showing the contrast between despair and hope.

Students were asked to create a dark background inspired by the book's images of confusing cityscapes. They used pieces of card and found objects such as plastic lids dipped into paint. I then asked students to add a red tree of any size somewhere in their picture. They were given their choice of medium, choosing collage, pastels, paint, glitter, markers and more. 

I have included so many images of the children's work as I find each one inspiring in its originality. 
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