Monday, June 30, 2014

"Harry The Dirty Dog" Storybook Art Lesson

This is a fun art activity to go with "Harry The Dirty Dog" by Gene Zion, Illustrated by Margaret Bloy Graham.

I thought it would be fun for the kids to create a stand up version of Harry - they can play with him when they finish making him.  I'll read the story and then the students will make their own clean and messy Harry The Dirty Dog.

I began by creating a version of Harry that could be cut after folding an 8 1/2 X 11" piece of card stock and watercolor paper.  After folding the paper in half and tracing the outline of Harry with his back on the fold you'll cut everywhere around Harry except his back - which is the fold.  I have attached a pdf of the pattern:

My class is preschoolers so I will cut out the shape from card stock and watercolor paper for them.  Older students can use the pattern as a template for tracing.  

The internal features (eyes, mouth, spots, fur, legs, ears etc...) will be drawn freehand.

The card stock Harry is finished with a black and grey colored pencil.

The watercolor paper Harry is finished by first drawing the features with pencil, then going over everything except the spots with a Sharpie.  Next use a white crayon over all the white spots, draw kind of heavily with the crayon so it will resist the black watercolor paint.  Finally do a black
watercolor wash over Harry and let him dry.

Have more time?  How about making his sweater or his seaweed disguise from the other Harry stories? 
 Lots of fun!

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Clothespin Mermaid and Pirates Craft

I think these are adorable and I've seen some versions on Pinterest.  I decided to give it a try.

First put mod podge on the faces to seal the wood so your sharpie doesn't bleed, then add the face with a sharpie. The Face for the mermaid is on the solid side of the pin, the pirate is on the split side because he has pants on.

I used pearly acrylic paint for the mermaids, painting the tail up to the top of the split on the pin.
While that drys I cut the tails out of glitter foam sheets.
Then I created the hair from yarn scraps - wrapping yarn around a piece of cardboard or a book until it seems thick enough.  Take another piece of yarn and tie a knot in the center of the yarn you took off the cardboard or book.
Use hot glue to add the hair and tail. 
Trim the hair and embellish however you want.
I had some little card making sticky jewels and flowers that  looked cute added to the mermaid ensemble.
When I taught this each girl made 2 - definitely a hit!
This would be really fun at a birthday party!

"Put Me In The Zoo" Art Lesson

I'm doing a series of art lessons for preschoolers based on storybooks.  Kohl's had the book by Robert Lopshire and Spot, the stuffed animal, and I couldn't resist this colorful and fun guy AND the story is about colors.

I'm going to read the book to the children and then I'm going to give the kids the yellow shape of Spot:

They will fill in the feet, toes and face with a black colored pencil.

Then they will us a spot to paint the spots - or a dot to paint the dots!
These are small pom poms dipped in paint and used to "Print" the spots.

We'll glue Spot to a white piece of paper and add the juggling balls or spots with a little trail behind them to show movement or action.  I'll demonstrate this and we'll discuss how artists and cartoonists use this technique.

The final step is to glue a black Pom Pom nose on Spot.
Here is the pattern for Spot:

I'm going to introduce complimentary colors as I paint my spots, trying to put blue and orange near each other and also red and green.  Purple will go with the yellow background.  All three sets of complimentary colors are on Spot.

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Summer Sailboat Craft

I don't buy many craft kits, but this one had some serious potential so I decided it was worth a try.  It's from Oriental Trading Co.

The kit comes unpainted and unglued.  I looked at some simple SunFish Sailboats online for color and sail ideas.

The sail is unpainted and it was basically a wrinkled up mess.  I got out my iron and smoothed it out.

I used blue masking tape - made especially for masking paint projects - and put it on all the white areas of the sail.  I made sure to really press it down so paint wouldn't leak under the tape.  
Then I chose my acrylic paint colors and painted the sail.  Once the paint is dry remove the masking tape.

While that dries you can paint the mast and whatever areas of the boat you want to paint.  It's easier to paint before you glue it.  Next I glued the boat together.

I added the coil of twine to the deck and the ribbon at the top as well as the quote.  Those weren't in the kit.
I haven't tried to sail it yet but it seems very balanced, I think it would float just fine in the bathtub : )
It is also nice enough to display anywhere.

I'm going to teach this to elementary age students and also young adults.  It's a project with simple directions but easily achieved fantastic results.
Some wonderful student examples, they added anchors.

Summer Salt Dough Sea Stars or Star Fish

I haven't used salt dough in years, but I saw these on Pinterest:

Which includes the recipe and instructions to make a garland of Sea Stars.
Salt Dough: Mix 2 Cups All-Purpose Flour, 1 Cup Salt, and 3/4 to 1 Cup of Water

Kids love working with any kind of clay so I think this will be a fun but also easy activity for my Beach Camp.

I mixed up a batch and experimented with creating the Star Fish. I used a ball of dough just like the instructions said and then flattened it and cut the shape. I shaped the star fish and then used a bamboo skewer to put the lines in the arms and the dot in the center. A straw to punch the hole for hanging and a toothpick for the dots.

I made one small Star Fish (about 1" or so) for a necklace.

I baked mine in a 200 degree oven for a few hours until they were dry. Once dry this dough is super strong!

Then instead of leaving it the natural color of the dough I decided to try a couple of different glitters.

The Starfish on the left is Mod Podge with fine glitter. The one on the right is spray painted with glitter spray paint in a multi color glitter.

The little necklace has been painted with acrylic paint in two colors of purple. Then a coat of mod podge and fine glitter. When that is dry a final coat of gloss mod podge to seal the glitter.

The last step is to pick out some twine or ribbon to hang or wear the star fish.

I'm sure the kids will make their star fish and then create some other fun ocean animals from their imagination for baking and painting. I can't wait to see what they create!

Monday, June 9, 2014

Watercolor Sea Horse Art Lesson

Depending on the age of your students you can provide a stencil or have them draw their own sea horse on watercolor paper.  Once they have the shape cut out of watercolor paper they use drops of different colors to create a light dappled sea horse.

I will demonstrate putting dabs of yellow here and there with a paintbrush, then a yellowish green, then a regular green, then a blueish green and finally some blue.  They will randomly dab the colors on in a pleasing pattern of their own choosing until they feel it is finished.  They don't have to use these colors, but they will be using at least 4 colors that mix well together.  For example - oranges and yellows, blues and greens, pinks and purples etc...

When it is mostly dry they can do a splatter color to add even more pattern/texture to the design.  I use a toothbrush for this.

Finally when the sea horse is dry they can add glitter and sequins wherever they want - but it is an accent, not for covering the whole painting.

It's fun the let students paint with some freedom!

Ocean Stained Glass Watercolor Lesson

I tried this black glue stained glass for the first time this year and I love the results.  The kids can do their drawing and then cover the lines with black glue.  After it drys overnight they can add the areas of watercolor easily because the glue keeps the watercolor confined to each individual area.

I used an underwater dolphin scene as my inspiration.  First I did a drawing with pencil on watercolor paper and then used black Elmers glue to go over my pencil lines.  (I made my own black glue with black acrylic paint added to regular white glue, mixed it well and returned it to the glue bottles.)   It helps to tell them to do the middle first and then work their way to the outside with the glue.  I will demonstrate turning the paper in different directions to make it easier to apply the glue as well.

The watercolor washes are lessons in color mixing, wet into wet and also removing color (wipe the brush in a paper towel so it is almost dry, it will "vacuum"  the paint right off the paper)  in areas to create lighter areas in the wash. 
It's easy for your students to create a complex looking work of art!

Starfish Tie Dye Bandanna

This is a challenging tie dye art project with great results:
I found this link on Pinterest that shows how to fold and dye the Starfish:

I watched it at least a dozen times and probably folded my bandanna at least that many times, but this is the result. Being careful and following directions was worth it!  I washed the bandanna and folded it damp, made sure to fold it correctly then dyed it and left it in a plastic bag overnight.

A great Summer art project!

India Ink and Tempera Resist Art Lesson

I think this is a fun project for kids to experience.  It can have a batik or stained glass look to it.  I am going to do the whale for my beach art camp and the coyote for my animal themed art camp.

You will need black and/or blue India Ink - it has to be waterproof ink.
White Tempera Paint
Colored Pencils
Watercolor Paper

First draw your design on watercolor paper - make it fairly simple with at least one large shape for the main focus.

Next using the white tempera paint cover the areas you will be coloring later.

The next step is to cover the entire paper with india ink.  VIP - paint the areas around the tempera first instead of just going over the entire page tempera and all.  If you paint the ink over the tempera first the brush can accidentally drop tempera into areas where you want the ink .  Once you have all the areas surrounding the tempera shapes done go over the entire page with the ink.  

Wait about 5 minutes for the ink to mostly dry - but not too long or it may not wash off.  Then rinse the entire page under running water until the ink washes away with the tempera, leaving the ink on the page where there wasn't any tempera.  Be gentle when washing the tempera away so the paper stays intact.

The next step is coloring the white areas after the paper is dry.  I am going to do this as a two day project, allowing the paper to dry before they use colored pencils to finish.

Galaxy Unit Astronaut in Space Mixed Media Art Lesson

I taught this lesson to my 3rd grade students for their galaxy unit.  I borrowed the class photo and enlarged it on a color copier to ge...