Last year, during the holidays, I introduced the (then) 6th/7th graders to Blue Dog. They really loved the vibrancy of Rodrigue’s paintings. The challenge for my students was to add a hat, mittens, scarf, or some sort of wintery look, and then add a crazy background. They a lot of fun with this!
First, I showed a video about George Rodrigue:
Then, we went through a slideshow of Blue Dogs to really pick apart the paintings.
Here are the finished pieces:
My 5th/6th graders did piece based on the artwork of Charley Harper. Here’s the picture it was based off of:
First, the students drew a birdbath and outlined it gray oil pastel. Then they used a gray watercolor wash to fill it in. Once it was dry, they cut it out. They lined up the birdbath on the second sheet of paper and made a small mark at the top of it in pencil. They removed the birdbath and drew a cardinal body on the line, like a Hershey’s Kiss. Next, they drew two dots for the eyeballs, and then drew a “U” and connected the dots at the top. Inside of that shape, they drew an upside-down “U”, and then a “V” to create the beak. They colored in the black part with a Sharpie, as well as outlined the cardinal with it. Once they were done with the body, they used a ruler and a red Sharpie to make the “flapping” wings. An orange Sharpie was used to color in the beak. Then they used oil pastels to color in the cardinal and make the branches. They water-colored the background blue and then glued the birdbath into place. Finally, using a mix of glue, shaving cream, and glitter, they added puffy snow to the birdbath, the bottom of the paper, and to the branches. They REALLY loved that part, and it looked pretty awesome!
Last year, my 6/7 class painted lots of paper. We had it strung up all over the place, but we never got to actually use it for a project. When they were a 5/6 class, those kids tore paper into leaf and petal shapes to make their poinsettias, and they used regular construction paper to do this.
For my new 5/6 students, we kicked it up a few notches. We used the painted papers from last year, and they turned out great!
We drew petal and leaf shapes (for poinsettias, they’re pretty much the same) onto the chosen painted papers. I had lots of oranges and blues for the petals, and reserved the greens for the leaves. Then, we cut them out and positioned the parts where we wanted them, and then we glued everything down. To make it even more elegant, we used gold or silver oil pastels to outline the petals and give them their veining. Yellow oil pastels were used for the centers. Don’t they look beautiful??