Apr 2, 2016

Clay Cactus Sculptures

A while back my grade fours completed these cactus sculptures, inspired by this post from Hope at 'Mrs Knight's Smartest Artists'. 
I began by having my students make a simple pinch pot for their plant pot. It was interesting to review the pinch pot process, which students had learned in grade one and two. 
I fired the pots and after studying various actual potted succulents from my house as well as different images, I asked students to sculpt their plant using Model Magic. I felt that the texture of Model Magic was perfect for succulent plants and allowed students to directly add other elements such as cut up toothpicks and matchsticks. 

Students were encouraged to paint their pots using bright colours and to attempt tonal variation with different greens when painting the plant.

Mar 26, 2016

More Chinese Scroll Paintings

 I recently revisited this project which I first completed with grade 4 students back in 2012.
The only change I made this time was that instead of using pastels for the blossoms I had students dip a paintbrush into red, pink and white paint and use the tip of their brush with the three colours on it to create the plum blossoms with a variegated effect.

Feb 20, 2016

Monkey Portraits

My grade 2 students recently celebrated Chinese New Year with these monkey portraits for Year of the Monkey. These were inspired by the Pop Art Chimp paintings over at MaryMaking. 

After discussing portraiture and viewing some examples of famous portraits, students were given photos of many types of monkeys, chimps and apes and we discussed how to build up our drawings using basic shapes (e.g oval head, semi-circle ears, triangle nose etc).

Once the drawings were complete, students outlined them in permanent marker before adding wildly colourful painting using tempera paints. Some also worked back into their paintings with oil pastel once dry. 

I never stop being amazed at my very young students abilities to create faces full of such personality and use colour so fearlessly and expertly.
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