"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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LAND ACKNOWLEDGEMENT I acknowledge, with deep respect, that I am gathered on Treaty 7 territory. I acknowledge the many First Nations, M├ętis and Inuit whose footsteps have marked these lands for generations. I respect the histories, languages and cultures all the Indigenous peoples of Canada, whose presence continues to enrich our community.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Glue Line Chalk Pastel Pumpkins

This is a re-post of a pumpkin still life project my Grade 7 students made. 
I brought in some mini pumpkins for them to look at- I find their drawings look so much better if they draw directly from observation. They first practised drawing pumpkins in their sketchbooks. Emphasize the use of curved lines to create a really realistic, 3-D looking pumpkin.

For the good copy, they used clear glue (we used Elmer's brand but any clear glue will work) to 'draw' directly onto black heavyweight construction paper (12 x 18"). Technically you could draw in pencil first and then pass over the lines with the glue, but I liked to challenge my kids to draw directly with the glue. 
It loosens them up. 

I prefer using clear glue, as opposed to white glue, as the clear glue dries nice and shiny and really black, and white glue dries more like a cloudy grey. 
But, by all means use white glue if that's what you have on hand. It works as well.

Students were required to draw a minimum of three pumpkins and they needed to be of different sizes (variety) and show overlapping (to create an illusion of depth).

The lines will be raised when wet, but they completely flatten out when dry. 
TIP: if you get any glue 'bubbles' after they've drawn the pumpkins, make sure to have kids pop them all with a pin, otherwise they do dry as bubbles and don't look so good in the finished piece.
Let these dry flat overnight.

The next class, students used chalk pastels to colour the pumpkins and background. Chalk pastels on black paper, as many art teachers know, is magical: the colours come out so rich and velvety. The glue lines will get dusty with the chalk, so for the last step, I had students use a think damp paintbrush to 'clean' off all the glue lines, so there were shiny and black again.

Ta da!

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Haunted House Silhouette Painting

With Halloween just around the corner, I though I'd start posting some holiday lessons. 
This is a repost of a Halloween project a Grade 8 class made a couple of years ago. It's a great lesson on positive and negative space as well as architectural features.
I was inspired by the project  "Sun and Moon" from the Art Attack website.

Start off with a sheet of construction paper for the background- orange, purple, or green. Then draw a large circle (for the full moon) onto yellow or orange construction paper, cut it out and glue it 
onto the background paper.

Before sketching out ideas, I showed a slideshow of different haunted houses and had students share ideas. Students planned their haunted houses on a sheet of white paper first. I find it's easier to work out the design on white paper- easier to erase/make changes as opposed to drawing directly on construction paper, where any type of erasing shows up and can easily wreck the paper. 

I provided a handout illustrating a variety of Victorian-type houses. You want to encourage interesting window shapes, perhaps a fence, withered trees, a pathway leading to the house, etc. and any "Halloween"-type accessories (cats, bats, pumpkins, witches, ghosts, etc.)

Once you have your drawing finalized, coat the back of the paper completely using your pencil.  We're making transfer-type paper here. Then tape your drawing onto your coloured background sheet and pass over all the pencil lines using a ball-point pen. Press fairly hard. 
This will transfer the graphite onto the coloured paper.

So once you remove the white paper you can see the clean transfer of the drawing 
onto the construction paper. 

We used black India ink (as it's such a rich, true black) for our paintings, but thinned down acrylic or good quality tempera paint would probably work as well. You can also add smaller, more intricate details, using a black marker.

Here are some Grade 8 results- they had alot of fun with adding all sorts of fun and spooky details.
I find this age group has such a vivid imagination!

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