A Fun Place For Kids to Explore Their Creativity

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Fauvist Self Portrait Inspired By Von Werefkin

I am always searching for interesting ways for students to create a self portrait. I found a fauvist/expressionist artist Marianne von Werefkin (1860-1938) as perfect inspiration. She was born in Russia, she studied in St Petersburg and Moscow. She came Munich and soon belonged to the circle around Kandinsky and Der Blaue Reiter. She had contact with the Fauves and her portraits are among the most succinct of this style. Fauvism emphasizes emotion rather than intellect and color instead of form, it attempts to externalize what’s internal. In our lesson we are inspired by von Werefkin fauvist self portrait. We focus on creating a real self portrait using unreal colors and space. 

Materials: Mirror, sketching pencils, and oil pastels or acrylic ink

Step #1: Draw light guideline down the center and across the middle of your paper. Use a hand mirror or any mirror and draw the shape of your head

Step #2: Draw your eyes, nose, and mouth.
Step #3: Draw ears, neck and hair.
Step #4: Draw your shoulder and add your shirt. Now add your background.
Step #5: Add your details and use fun unreal colors to create your fauvist self portrait.

Friday, May 18, 2012

Artist Wayne Thiebaud Still Life

I was lucky enough to study under Wayne Theibaud when he spent a semester at the University of Minnesota. Thiebaud is an American painter whose most famous works are of cakes, pastries, toys and lipsticks. His last name is pronounced "Tee-bo." He is associated with the Pop art movement because of his interest in objects of mass culture, however, his works, executed during the fifties and sixties, slightly predate the works of the classic pop artists. He did a wonderful shoe poster for Daytons in the 1980's. Thiebaud uses heavy pigment and exaggerated colors to depict his subjects, and the well-defined shadows characteristic of advertisements are almost always included in his work. We use his “Cupcakes” painting from 1963 to learn about repeating images, shadows and color.

Materials: Heavyweight paper, sketching pencil and pastels or colored pencils.

Step #1: Draw guidelines down the middle and across the center of your paper. Use the center guideline as the back edge of the table. Draw three slightly curved lines evenly spaced across your paper as shown below. Add the sides of the cupcake.

Step #2: Draw the tops of the cupcakes and add the ribbing of the cupcake base.

Step #3: Draw the repeating shadows that connect the cupcakes.

 Step #4: Decorate your cupcakes and add your own details. Have fun, be creative.




Thursday, May 17, 2012

Audubon Great Grey Owl

One my favorite items to draw or paint is birds, and I am most inspired by John James Audubon. Audubon (1785 - 1851) was a French-American ornithologist, naturalist, hunter, and painter. He painted, catalogued, and described the birds of North America in a manner far superior to what had gone before. In his later years he started cataloging all the animals he encountered in his travels. The Great Grey Owl is the largest owl in North America and hunts during the day. Audubon first saw this owl in the Boston area and later painted it London in 1834. We use Audubon’s “Great Grey Owl” as the inspiration for our lesson.

Materials: Heavyweight drawing paper,sketching pencil and choice of materials to finish.

Step #1: Draw guidelines down the center and across the middle of your paper. Draw a circle for the head. Draw the owl's eyes and beak. Draw a large "M" shape around the eyes. Remember the great grey owl has smaller eyes than other owl's because he hunts during the day.

Step #2: Draw the body and the wings. The wing has a heart shape to it as shown below.
Step #3: Draw the leg, talons and tail feathers of the owl.
Step #4: Draw a branch for the owl to perch on. Now add some feathers to the head, wing, tail and body.

Step #5: Time to add your details, have fun and be creative.




Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Artist: George Rodrigue "Blue Dog Speaks"

Whenever I think of creating dogs in unreal colors I think of George Rodrigues' Blue dog series. Rodrigue is a great advocate for kids art and donates his time and money to bring blue dog to sick children. For our inspiration we use a work from George Rodrigue's book "Bue Dog Speaks" called “ In My Heart You’ll Live Forever" from 1995. Rodrigue is a Cajun artist who grew up in New Iberia, Louisiana. He is known for his creation of the Blue Dog series of paintings, featuring a blue-hued dog, attributed to his deceased dog named Tiffany. The blue-hued, ghostly spaniel/terrier is often featured with a white nose and yellow eyes. In this Rodrigue painting the Blue Dog is sitting next to a pot of flowers. Students get to color their dog in a multitude of unreal colors. We use color and shape to create dimension and interest.
Materials: Sketching pencils, heavyweight paper, watercolor pencils or oil pastels.

Step #1: Draw guidelines down the center and across the middle of the page. Draw a oval for the dogs head as show below.
Step #2: Draw the dogs eyes, snout and ears.
Step #3: Draw the dogs short stubby body.
Step #4: Draw a line behind the dog for floor and add a flower pot.
Step #5: Add your own details. Now time to add some color. Have fun, be creative.