"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.
Thanks for visiting!

Wednesday, July 24, 2019

Geometric Painted Hearts

I found some thin washi tape at Michaels a while back and absolutely love it- it has so many uses within the art room. I developed this painted heart lesson using this tape. 
So Grade 8 student created a symmetrical heart on folded paper and used this as a template to trace onto cardstock. Then they could either leave the paper white and put the tape on in geometric lines or paint it a colour first such as gold. 

Once the tape was put down students used tempera paint in whatever colour(s) they wanted. Many chose to do an ombre or gradation using tints of a colour.  Once this dries, peel off the tape (satisfying!!) and cut out the heart.

Some Grade 8 examples:

this student added a dandelion onto the background which is gorgeous.

this student created a galaxy

Friday, July 12, 2019

Dragon Eye Drawings & Paintings

I've seen this super cool lesson floating around Pinterest for quite a while. I finally bit the bullet and made my FIRST (yes my first) Teachers Pay Teacher purchase, haha. 
Let me tell you, it was the best $4 I've ever spent! 
I bought the "Eye of the Dragon" lesson from the shop Art with Creations Claudia Loubier 
who is from Quebec.
The digital download comes with the lesson plan and lots of handouts with 
visual reference images and practice sheets. 

My Grade 5 students drew their good copies on 9 x 12" heavy white paper.

They used the coloured pencil worksheet to practice blending colours on first 
before starting colouring on their actual eye. 

Some students preferred to use watercolour or charcoal. 

The kids really enjoyed this project and they all turned out very cool and colourful!

charcoal pencil

Wednesday, July 3, 2019

Concentric Circles Marker Design

This colour theory project is great for either the start or the end of a school year. It's also perfect as a sub lesson! I'll be doing it again this September when my Junior High mixed grade class (7-9) starts. It uses basic materials but yields lovely results and gives you a good idea of any
 new students starting art abilities. 

I posted this project before with my younger grades HERE. This project is my take on the popular warm/cool hand project you see alot on Pinterest. I believe the originator of this project was Art Projects for Kids, though I could no longer find the original post.

 I'm fortunate in that my junior high students all have their own laptops, so they use those to find images to reference for this project. I leave the subject matter up to them but you cold limit it to a specific theme such as plants, animals, nature, etc. I give them a 11 x 17" sheet of paper with concentric circles already printed on it.  Then they sketch their image onto it with pencil. 

They use warm or cool colours for the background and vice versus for the image. We use a variety of brands of markers in my art room but Mr. Sketch works really well with this project 
because of it's perfect thick chiseled marker tip.

Some Grade 7 - 9 results:

(this student wanted to use watercolour)

Thursday, June 27, 2019

Blackfoot Buffalo Hide Designs

Grade 6-12 students learned about the Blackfoot tradition of winter counts and created their own version using traditional Blackfoot and Plains pictographs. 

The Blackfoot nation is made up of four nations. These nations include the Piegan Blackfeet, Siksika, Piikani Nation, and Kainai or Blood Indians. The four nations come together to make up what is known as the Blackfoot Confederacy, meaning that they have banded together to help one another. The nations have their own separate governments ruled by a head chief, but regularly come together for religious and social celebrations. The Blackfoot are today located throughout Alberta and parts of Montana and Saskatchewan. Traditionally, they had a way of life centered around buffalo hunting.

I recently attended a two day workshop on the Siksika Nation reserve near Calgary, Alberta. We learned about the rich culture and history of the Siksikai’tsitapi, in their natural environment, to enhance the implementation of programs for our students. 
During the workshop, we were given a tour of Old Sun College, a former residential school where many atrocities happened. Today it is a First Nations run college. Inside the library is a beautiful buffalo hide winter count on display. 

Winter Count Calendars
Traditional Plains calendars are called winter counts because among most Plains tribes they feature a single pictogram that defined the entire year. Prior to using the Gregorian calendar, Blackfoot people counted years according to 'winters' rather than European calendar years. Before the late 19th century when buffalo became scarce, winter counts were painted in buffalo hides. The annual pictograms could be arranged in a linear, spiral, or serpentine pattern. 

Process and materials
Buffalo hides, as well as deer, elk, and other animal hides, were painted. In the past, Plains artists used a bone or wood stylus to paint with natural mineral and vegetable/plant pigments. Before contact with Europeans they used natural pigments. Later they used commercial dyes obtained through trade.

I used this winter count as inspiration for a project to do with my students on National Indigenous Peoples Day at my school. It's a day recognising and celebrating the cultures and contributions of the First Nations, Inuit and Métis Indigenous peoples of Canada. No exams can be held on this day.

I printed out a buffalo hide template (HERE) and enlarged it onto 11 x 17" paper. I pre-tinted them all a light brown using liquid watercolour. I also made a handout for my students using the pictographs found on the winter count I photographed at Old Sun College. Most students went with the spiral composition, starting at the center and spiralling outwards. We used Sharpies and some chose to add some traitional colours of blues, red and ochres. 

Here are some of the finished ones:

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