ABOUT THIS BLOG

"A Faithful Attempt" is designed to showcase a variety of K-12 art lessons, the work of my art students, as well as other art-related topics. Projects shown are my take on other art teacher's lessons, lessons found in books or else designed by myself.
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Saturday, February 28, 2015

Modigliani- Style Portrait Paintings


This is one of my all-time favourite lessons to teach. you know how you have like your "top 5"? Yes, well, this is probably #1 or #2 for me. Why? Because, firstly, Modigliani is one of my favourite artists. I'm a portrait painter myself, so I'm naturally drawn to portraiture. Secondly, his work is a great introduction to portraiture for new artists as it's stylized and therefore easier to tackle. Lastly, all students tend to find success with this project- it's one of those bullet proof lessons that everyone can feel good about. I've posted this lesson previously HERE.

I start off with a slideshow of Modigliani's portraits and a mini biography on him. I teach this lesson to Junior High grades (8-10). Alot of time they think his paintings are 'wierd'- why is the neck so long?  So we talk about stylization, the influence of African masks on his work, etc.

So students start off my doing some rough sketched first. They need to include the main characteristics of Modigliani's style: elongated neck, almond shaped eyes, and a small mouth. 
The rest is up to them. They do a good copy drawing on heavy white paper. Then trace over the lines with a Sharpie or a dark pencil, so the facial lines show up when you paint the face. 



We use tempera (I use Chromatemp brand- it's the bomb.com- super opaque, great quality) for this- we want a flat, matte, dry surface because later we emphasize the lines using charcoal pencils- they really stick to the tempera nicely. I encourage students to use a mixture of colours and apply them in a rough manner using a flat brush. It's easier, imo, of you paint the background first, then the skin, then the hair last. But my kids painted in all sorts of manner and it all worked out in the end.





Once all the painting is completed and dry, use a charcoal pencil to go over all the lines and blend it out with your finger for a very cool smudgy look. I explain how this provides contrast and helps the features stand out. My students were sooo reticent to do this step and hated smudging the lines but I forced them! hahaha! 

Here are Grade 7 - 10 results (it's a mixed Elective class)



Grade 8


Grade 9

Grade 8

Grade 9

Grade 10

Grade 7

Grade 10


Grade 9

Grade 8

Grade 7


Grade 9


Grade 8








3 comments:

Mary said...

You always produce Amazing Modigliani inspired portraits. I particularly like the mustached fellow.

Miss said...

Thanks Mary :) The mustached one is my favourite as well; so quirky and original. The student who made it has never taken Art before- I was so proud of him!

Mrs. Hahn said...

These are great... I will be doing this soon. Thanks for sharing. I wanted to let you know how much I appreciate your comment on my blog. I put the idea into play right away.

http://minimatisse.blogspot.com/2015/03/color-testing-station.html

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