Thursday, October 23, 2014

Halloween Crows and Pumpkins



 So striking Presley! (1st grade)





In honor of Halloween, my Mixed Media art groups created these collaged pieces using charcoal, chalk pastel, watercolor and acrylic. Since my classes often have a wide age range (K - 6th) I find this style of art helps everyone to feel successful. But I suppose this project was inspired by the very loud group of crows that have been gathering across from my bedroom window lately. Have a Happy Halloween!

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Sea Otters

 Such a sweet face Jenna!

I love the watery effect!

We kicked off our new Mixed Media Art Class session with these sweet sea otter pieces. This project was inspired by this gallery I found on Artsonia. The kids created their otters on black construction paper using chalk pastels. They followed a direct line drawing lesson to put down the basic shapes of their otters. I encouraged them to add texture with their pastels to create the look of fur (we learned sea otters have the thickest fur of any animal - 1,000,000 hairs per square inch!) Their backgrounds were created with watercolor to give the appearance of the otters popping out of the water. Artwork by K-6th graders.

Fun fact: Sea otters are social animals that float together in groups called "rafts" and hold hands when they sleep so they don't drift away from each other. So darn cute!

Monday, September 22, 2014

Tropical Bird Batiks

 Sonja, 4th grade

 Cora, 1st grade

 Sadie, 3rd grade

 Scott, 4th grade

 Andie, 3rd grade

Liam, 1st grade

Sorry for being such a blogger slacker lately! Fall starts a bit slower for me in my private classes as parents are trying to get in the swing of a new school schedule with sports and other activities. Since my summer class, Art Experiment Lab was such a hit with the kids, I decided to give it another go with my new group. It's a fun mixture of art and science. Our first project is always a winner, toothpaste and aloe vera lotion batiks. I was instantly smitten when I learned about this from Phyl at There's a Dragon in My Art Room, 4 years ago. In my summer class, I let the children choose whatever subject matter they wanted. This was a bit overwhelming for some, so I decided on a tropical bird theme with my fall crew. I did a few line drawing lessons on the white board and encouraged the kids to fill their space to keep the compositions interesting. Amazing how one thrift shopped bed sheet and some Dollar Tree materials could be used to create such beauties!

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Summers' Big Finish

 Feeling the effects of Hurricane Marie

 My Mom happened to be visiting today and she was
 totally game for climbing the berm to see the waves with me.

The calm before the storm - taken just hours before it hit.

Lifeguard tower 8 is down

 My daughter, Savannah and I shared some wonderful sunset strolls this summer in clearly calmer conditions.

Today was not only the first day of school for our local public schools, it was also the day to witness the effects of Hurricane Marie. This is fairly uncommon in these parts, and more of an east coast norm. So, it brought out the lookie-lous (me included), the media, and the crazy/brave surfers. I'm hoping for a swift end to these extreme conditions. Mother Nature has let it be known she is large and in charge. 

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Bubble Prints with Jellyfish

Today was the last day of my Art Experiment Lab class as well as my summer art series.It's been Wonderful! (I still have plans to post their salt dough pieces and toothpaste and aloe vera batiks soon).
I found many bubble print ideas on Pinterest and decided to use a recipe of dish soap, water and watercolor. Tempera paint, bubble bath and bubble solution were alternatives. This is a great project to use what you have on hand. It's messy! So I'm glad I purchased some disposable aluminum containers to ease clean-up.

Basically the kids mixed a combination of 2 tablespoons of liquid watercolor, about 1 tablespoon of dish soap and 1/4-1/2 cups water in a plastic cup (we adjusted when needed). They taped 5 straws together to give them more "bubble power". Then they began to blow, and as the colored bubbles rose past the lid of the cup, they took their watercolor paper and laid it on top, making a print. I offered a variety of colors that they could swap around. They obviously kept their same straw bundles and rinsed or wiped them before changing to a new color.

These made cool looking organic abstract art pieces all on their own. But I decided to add the element of chalk pastel jellyfish. (Maybe inspired by my daughter's insistence that a jellyfish was ever present during last weeks' body boarding venture) These were done on rice paper to mimic the translucent quality of jellyfish. But given the fragile nature of this paper, basic copy paper would be a fine alternative. The children drew simple jellyfish bodies with chalk pastel, blending in "little circles" and leaving the centers white to mimic the translucent look. They were then cut out, glue "sticked" to their dried bubble prints and then pastel tentacles drawn on top of their bubble art. (K-5th art)

Bubble prints were a real crowd pleaser!

Here are some of their bubble prints on their own - really beautiful actually

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Watercolor Experiments with Leaf Prints

My final themed art class this summer is Art Experiment Lab. It's half art class, half science lab. Our first project dealt with how different materials reacted with watercolor. It expanded on a project I did last October. The children first started with a watercolor wash and laid their leaves down, veins up. I offered salt, rice, rubbing alcohol in mini spray bottles, and baby oil to use about their pieces. The children could see which elements absorbed the watercolor and which repelled it. Last they used a darker color to paint around the edges of their leaves and left them to dry. If they chose to, they created a contour leaf drawing with chalk pastels to glue to their finished piece. While this project emphasizes process over product, I think their pieces are quite magical. Artwork by K-4th graders. ( The original idea for this project can be found here from Groove Is In The Art )

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Global Art Fun

The last 3 weeks my Global Art Fun classes have created artwork inspired by the art and cultures of Japan, France, Mexico, Egypt and China. Here's a sampling. (K-5th)