Thursday, March 14, 2019

Picasso Portraits

First Grade Art
2 Class Periods
Picasso Portraits, First Grade Art Lesson

Lesson Introduction:

Students learned a brief biography about artist Pablo Picasso via a power point that I created.  We also examined more closely his Cubism style of painting. I shared with students this YouTube clip on the difference between realism and cubism.  Portraits: Cubism Art Lesson  Please note, I did not share the last few minutes of the video where there is a lesson on how to make a cubist portrait.  I wanted to present my own directions for that part of the lesson.
Pablo Picasso in his studio.
Day 1

Students were given a 12 x 18 inch piece of construction paper.  I selected a color for each section I taught, just to make it easier for me to keep track of the classes, but you could open this up for student choice.

Students then chose a 6 x 9 inch piece of construction paper for their shirt for their portrait.  Students were shown how to cut two corners off to create the shoulders.  This was then glued to the bottom of the 12 x 18 inch piece of construction paper.

I tried to have various skin tone papers available for students to choose from.  For the head I had paper cut 7 x 9 inches and the neck 3 x 5 inches.  We started with the neck piece.  Students were instructed to glue it so it looked like it was coming out of the shirt versus resting on top of the shirt.

The head was created next.  Students round all four corners on the 7 x 9 inch construction paper to give the head an oval shape.  This was then glued on top of the neck.

For the remaining part of class students were shown how to create different types of hair styles.  I turned them loose on the construction paper scrap bucket for this part of the lesson.  I demonstrated folding and curling paper, as well how to make short and long hair styles.

Names were placed on the back and handed in.

Day 2

Before this class period took place, I created handouts that had various eyes, nose and mouth pieces on them.  If you did not want to take the time to do this step, you could have students just hunt for these pieces out of a magazine.

Students cut from my handouts two eyes, a nose and a mouth that they liked.  I reminded them that it was ok for them not to match and the placement of these features could be off centered to help with the Cubism feel of the piece.

After the pieces were glued down, students were able to use markers to add details such as coloring in the eyes or lips or adding details to the shirt.  I also allowed them to use the construction paper bins to create other things for their portrait like necklaces, hats, bows, etc.

The final step was to glue 1 x 1 inch pattern pieces of paper around the border of the composition.

Students Examples:

Sunday, January 20, 2019

Bird's Eye View Snowman

2 Class Periods
Bird's Eye View Snowman, Kindergarten Art Lesson

Day 1:
This class period began with a very basic discussion about perspective.  We talked about how one can see the world a bit different depending on how you were positioned in this world.  As a class I had students stand up and quietly look around.  Thinking about all the things they could see.  I then had student lay on their tummies and look around the room from this perspective.  We discussed the differences.  I described to students how we call this perspective worm's eye view.  I then asked students to imagine what the opposite of worm's eye view would be.  With a bit of hinting it didn't take students too long to figure it out and once I explained this view point was called bird's eye view, one could see their excitement in their understanding.

We started with a 12 x 12 inch piece of black, gray or blue-gray construction paper and a 10 x 10 inch piece of white construction paper.  Using our scissors students were shown how to cut the corners off their white square to create a circle shape.  I informed students this would be the bottom snowball for our snowman which was then glued in place on the black construction paper.  A thin brown strip of construction paper was then glued across the large white circle to represent the arms of the snowman.

We then used a 6 x 6 inch piece of white construction paper for the middle snowball.  Corners were once again cut to form a circle and then glued on top of the brown strip.

Using a 5 x 5 inch piece of construction paper (various colors were set out for students to choose from), we once again cut another circle to create the scarf.  Students glued this on the middle snowball.  Scrap strips of the same color were created and glued in placed to represents the ends of the scarf.

Day 2:
On this day, begin with a quick review of bird's eye view.  A final snowball was created to form the head of the snowman.  This square is 3 x 3 inches.  At the same time we cut the final snowball, have students select a 3 x 3 inch piece of colored construction paper for the hat.  I show students how to place the two pieces of paper on top of one another and cut the corners.  Now they have two circles the same size!  Have students glue the white snowball head on the center of the scarf circle.  Then cut the colored circle in half to create the hat. Because they cut the circles at the same time, the hat should fit the snowman's head.  Show students how to glue this on half of the snowman's head.

The rest of the class period is used for snowman details.  We create a carrot nose out of orange construction paper scraps, draw details on our hat and scarf with markers and crayons and give our snowman a face using a sharpie marker.

Our final step is to take a Q-tip and dot the background of our composition with white tempera paint to create snowflakes.

Student Examples:

Shoe Portraits

Fifth Grade
3 to 4 Class Periods
Shoe Portraits, Fifth Grade Art Lesson

Day 1:
Students were instructed on this very first day that they would be drawing self-portrait.  Many students gasped at the thought of having to draw a picture of themselves and were groaning at the thought of how to tackle something that seemed so difficult to execute.

After the grumbling stopped, I informed students that their self-portrait was not to be of their face, it was to be of their shoes.  This new spin on on a lesson, had many students hooked right away.

Together as a class I demonstrated to the students how to set up their paper to get started.  I emphasized the power of observation and the importance of looking at what they were drawing. Students were taught how to the draw the outside of the shoe and work their way in.  Adding more and more details as they drew.

Day 2:
Students continued to work on drawing their shoe for the second day of class.  (At the end of the first day of this lesson, students were informed to make sure that they wore the same shoes to class). 

The concept of horizon line was discussed and added into the composition. 

We then discussed drawing items on the floor by our shoes to help others identify our self-portraits.  These items could be hobby related, based off of likes, pets, foods, sports, etc.  Items had to be drawn in proportion to one another as well as to the shoe.  This concept of proportion was discussed in a great amount of detail.

Day 3 to 4:
Students continued to draw, outline and color their pieces.  Students were allowed to use markers, colored pencil or crayons to finish this assignment.  Craftsmanship was stressed.

Student Examples:

Wednesday, October 31, 2018

Vincent's Sunflowers

Third Grade
3 Class Periods
Vincent's Sunflowers, Third Grade Art Lesson
This project is one that I did last year that I entitled Concentric Circle Bouquets.  All the steps are exactly the same, except for this year we took a heavy emphasis on artist Vincent van Gogh and his painting of Sunflowers.  After we created our concentric circles in tints and shades of orange, yellow and brown, students were shown how to create petals around the centers.

I shared the following video with my students on the life and art of Vincent van Gogh.

After the video, we examined more closely his painting of the Sunflowers.  Each work table received two copies of the painting to look at during their work time for reference as they painted the petals on their pieces.
Sunflowers by Vincent van Gogh
I received many compliments on these third grade paintings.  It makes my heart swell with pride when my students do a job well done!

Examples of Student Work: