These kids are amazing! They worked hard at looking and adjusting each line and shape without complaint. Mixing colors and developing the lights and darks came with their choice of oil or dry pastel.
Beyond the gorgeous results, the best part of this project for me was the students' discovery of how cool daffodils are! After carefully observing them, they were excited to notice them blooming all over town!
Who knew that a random variety of jars and bottles from the refrigerator could look so good?!
The challenges here included drawing each different shape (harder than it looks.), positioning each container on the table (some higher, some lower, some tucked behind others) to show depth on a flat piece of paper, and using good colored pencil technique to the very end (requires patience!).
For color, we ignored the 'real' colors and students began with one main (favorite) color and then chose a color harmony (complementary, analogous, secondary) to complete their work.
Mixing and balancing colors were part of the fun, too!
Although I do stop and smell the roses (Really, I do.) and take photographs - up until now, I hadn't stopped to paint them.
But then my friend, Dorota, commissioned me to paint a picture for her - a rose.
I consider 'Fragrant Beauty' a portrait of Dorota in the form of a flower.
The passionate red, the layers of color, the flowing lines and the light shining through - Beauty...Dorota.
This lovely woman is the owner and sole beautician at DKN Salon in Glen Ellyn, IL. We met 3 years ago when my family moved to the area. During my first few appointments, other clients stopped in to just to say hello or to bring Dorota gifts. I thought to myself, "Don't these people have lives?"
Well...now I understand. When you enter DKN, it's like being invited into Dorota's home. I am greeted with a hug and a "How are you, My Friend?" - I doubt that I am the only one. :) She offers coffee, tea, wine, water and european candies. She works her magic and our conversation begins.
I am inspired by Dorota's life story: leaving her home country of Poland in her late teens, living in Germany for a couple of years as a young bride, moving to the United States, having 2 boys, then raising them as a single mom - and owning her own business. I am blessed by Dorota's warmth, generosity, servant heart, strength, openness to learning, faith and character.
A fragrant beauty.
Fall II - Drawing Class
These kids amaze me.
"The world is full of magic things
patiently waiting for our senses to grow sharper."
- WB Yeats
When we stop to observe what is in front of us - taking time to study it so that we can capture it on paper - we are sharpening our senses. We discover what we would normally pass by.
Our appreciation grows for the 'magic' that surrounds us.
My 1st through 5th grade students rose to the challenge of drawing from life. It can be easier to draw from a photo. The view is cropped for us and what is 3-dimensional has already been translated to a 2-dimensional image. The landscape (a view from my backyard) was especially challenging - but SO good for stretching our observational skills!
Click on the image for a larger (and complete) view.
Click here for current information on classes.
In our last week of summer classes, my students and I traveled around the world in 5 days.
We kept our artwork to 5x7 inches - a lit bit bigger than a post card.
It was exciting to imagine flying around the globe.
I loved seeing the confidence grow as the kids approached drawing a variety of subjects within the week.
There's more to see! Click on each image to the students' work from each continent:
THE AMAZON RAINFOREST in SOUTH AMERICA
Using colored pencil, creating a foreground, middle ground and background &
mixing a variety of greens.
FAMOUS LANDMARKS in EUROPE
Constructing a building out of basic shapes before looking closer for details. Pen & Ink.
THE GREAT BARRIER REEF in AUSTRALIA
Drawing one line at a time - looking at where the line starts and where it finishes.
Looking for light and dark values & mixing blues and greens.
A SAFARI in AFRICA
Building an animal with basic shapes. Comparing sizes and adding details.
Creating light and dark values with pencil.
The HIMALAYAS in ASIA
The same drawing approach as The Great Barrier Reef: one line at a time.
Drawn on black paper with white colored pencil.
Students chose between colored pencil and tempera paint to mix their colors.
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Sometimes I feel the need to remind my students of how young and amazing they are!
I hated to see these paintings head out the door!
Get ready for gorgeous flowers created with a variety of materials and compositions.
Each color you see is a color they mixed. :)
(For those who are interested, I linked some of the art materials to the product we used.)
Students zoomed in on the flower - creating interesting centers and their own unique flower.
OIL PASTEL W/ WATERCOLOR WASH:
These young artists created a bouquet of flowers including 2 or 3 different kinds of flowers
and a chosen color harmony. (secondary, analogous, complementary)
LIQUID WATERCOLORS (I like to call them watercolor dyes.):
Each student chose a photograph and looked carefully at each petal they drew.
They also chose whether they wanted to work with a rectangular or square piece of paper.
ACRYLIC PAINT ON CANVAS:
These girls worked on developing light and dark values while learning how to manipulate acrylic paint on an 8x10 canvas. (They are also quite competitive when it comes to 'Name that Musical' while listening to songs on Pandora's 'Showtunes' station.)
Because of the angles and details - planes, trains and automobiles are interesting, but not easy to draw. These guys did great!
Do you see the use of 1-point perspective in the trains?
Along with the challenges (and success!) with drawing, I couldn't resist the opportunity to develop light and dark values and incorporate color mixing into our projects.
In the train pictures, all the gray and brown colors were created by mixing complementary colors (colors that are opposites on the color wheel).
In the airplane drawings, students created some aerial perspective by making the sky darker at the top of the page, and lighter as they approached the horizon line (where the sky meets the ground).
Our last day of class included the opportunity to draw cool cars. Again the kids worked on seeing and drawing the unique angles and details found in their vehicles.
What a creative, focused and thoroughly enjoyable group of kids!
Together, we explored the world of birds through oil pastel & watercolor, pen & ink with colored pencil, acrylic paint and Tombow markers.
Students also experienced what it felt like to create on different surfaces -
construction paper, watercolor paper, wood and shiny slick paper.
Summertime - my creative energy has shifted to spending time with my own children, teaching art classes, taking photographs and painting when I can carve out quiet blocks of time. :)
In last week's 'Leapin' Lizards' class, students created 2-dimensional drawings and 3-D sculptures.
The enthusiasm of this group was contagious!
One of the boys came in one morning - a huge grin on his face - and said, "I just can't stop smiling!" When I asked him why, he replied, "Because I'm at art class!" Apparently, he was up early, all ready to come... 2 hours before class started. Love it!
Each student chose their own lizard picture to work from and we spent the week observing shapes, creating textures and mixing colors - AND getting our hands all slimy with papier mache!
Drawing bikes with my students:
I brought one of my boy's bikes into our studio space.
After looking for and drawing the details on the bicycle, we took things a step further by choosing a shape and/or line found in the bike to create a unique pattern for the background.
When it came time to choose colors, each student selected a color harmony - complementary (opposites in the color wheel), analogous (neighbors on the color wheel) and neutrals are shown here. Light and dark values give the pattern a bit of contrast.
Click here for a schedule of upcoming children's classes.
Springtime in art class meant drawing some frogs and bicycles.
There was quite a bit of drawing practice as each student enlarged a small tree frog photo onto 9x12 black paper. Just trying to figure out where all those toes go was a bit tricky!
Using oil pastels, the kids then mixed colors and values (lights and darks).
Rich, vibrant results!
I will post the bike drawings tomorrow.
Click here to see a schedule for upcoming children's classes.