Thursday, 24 December 2015

Elfs Legs in Watercolours

Aren't these Elf's legs the cutest???

Merry Christmas Everyone!

Have a wonderful holidays and Happy New Year!


Wednesday, 23 December 2015

Marbled Clear Plastic Ornaments

Loving how these worked out and so simple.  These were inspired by a Happy Hooligans post.  We used egg shaped plastic ornaments that I happened to have in the cupboard.  I got the children to spoon in various coloured paints and then they moved it around.  Some used a skewer to move it around a bit too.  I dried these in the halves then put them back together when the paint was dry.


Monday, 21 December 2015

Tuesday, 8 December 2015

Street Art Stencilling with Primary Children

I have to say I was a little scared about these lessons.  I was really going against the "rules" here when it comes to allowing young children to use spray paint.  The children who produced these were aged 6 to 12.  We did do this outside in a large ventilated area, with masks and using low toxic sugar spray, yet I was still nervous.  However the end results were pretty terrific and the children really seemed to enjoy the experience.

We started the lesson with a little bit of inspiration from these two video's:
Graffiti always wins - NGV Studios. Love how this shows lots of different street art techniques and a group of artists working together.
100 Most Creative Street Art - Some of these artists are just so clever and talented!

We also looked at the work of Melbourne Street Artist HaHa who does a lot of multi layered stencil work, especially of Ned Kelly (a famous Australian bush ranger).

 Image result for ha ha ned kelly

What you need:
  • Spray Paint (I used Sugar Spray Paint)
  • MDF Boards (or canvas boards) to paint on
  • Stencils (I've been collecting them over the past few months, also had a lucky find at a warehouse sale of layered stencils).
  • Posca Paint Pens

How To:
  • We did a background first to get the hang of spray painting.  They just used several colours to create a mottled effect.  It was handy to get them to used to spraying from the right distance and how hard to push the nozzle.  For very young children I sometimes got them to put their finger over mine and we did it together (some didn't have the finger strength to push hard enough).
  • I only had 3-4 children spraying at once to minimise the fumes and so I could help out.  
  • I kept the children busy when waiting for their turn or for the paint to dry by getting them to draw on brick paper.  They were asked to come up with a street art name for themselves and to imagine that they had been given permission (an important aspect to reinforce when teaching street art) to design the wall in any way they wished.  I gave them a handout on how to do graffiti writing.
  • When the background was dry they started stenciling.  Its important to let each layer dry in between if doing a multi layered stencil.
  • We added final details with Posca Paint Pens the following week.

The Results:

Bright and colourful that's for sure!

And here are some examples of the work they did whilst waiting for layered stencils to dry:


Monday, 7 December 2015

Landscapes (painted with our fingers) with Animals (Model Magic)

I'm loving these landscapes I just sent home...

These were produced over two weeks:


We concentrated on painting with our fingers.  Yes this may bring back memories of the messy type of finger painting we all did in kinder.  However there are some adult artists out there that use only their fingers to produce the most amazing pieces of art.  Painting with your fingers allows you to be in direct contact with the paint and your surface.  Its quite therapeutic and you can really get lost in the motion of it.  We looked at three artists to inspire us:

Arthur Boyd - Was an Australian Artist, known to paint Australian Landscapes.  We have been looking at Arthur as there is a Boyd exhibition on locally (he grew up close to where we live).  This video of him painting with his fingers and hands is old, yet I love it and what he says about his painting style.
Zaria Foreman - Is an American artist whose hyper realistic finger paintings show landscapes to document the ever-changing beauty of regions affected by climate change. She is currently in Antarctica click here for more information and to see her paintings.
Iris Scott - Is an American painter who creates vibrant paintings with a unique, stylistic finger painting process, using surgical gloves and placing the oil paint directly on her hands.  Rapidly applying thick oil colour with several points of contact rather than one Scott can be classified as a modern Impressionist with a twist. Check out this youtube clip of her painting.  Beautiful! 

We have been looking at Australian Artists and Landscapes this term so the theme was to paint an Australian landscape.  I told them that the following week we would be making animals so they also needed to think ahead as to what type of animal they would like to make and which landscape you would find them in.  We are pretty lucky that here in Australia as there is a great choice of diverse landscapes such as rain forest, coast, desert and bush.

What you need:
  • MDF Boards or something else to paint on (I use MDF as its cheap and can hold a lot of paint without getting soggy, you also need something sturdy to glue the model magic animals too)
  • Acrylic Paint
  • Gloves (optional - I used them as some were donated to me, about half of the children liked using them)
  • Plastic lids for putting the paint on (I get them to squirt out a little of each colour they need themselves, I store all of my paint in tomato sauce bottles which always amuses the children)

How to:
  • If the children wish they can draw an outline in pencil first (some just jumped straight in and started painting)
  • I let them develop their own method of painting
  •  Encourage mixing of colours directly on the boards, using thick paint for texture, adding more than one layer of paint.
  • Leave to dry until following week


First we finished our landscapes by adding chalk and oil pastels to create even more texture and colour.

Next we used Crayola Model Magic to make animals for our Australian Landscapes.  The idea of putting clay animals onto painted landscapes was from a recent blog post by Cassie Stephens (she did a jungle theme with tigers - so cute, check out her post by clicking here).

Loving the model magic.  I found it easy to work with and we only had a few breaks whilst gluing them on.  The trick is to try and get the children not to handle them much after they have dried.  Even though the directions say to let them dry first then paint, we actually painted ours immediately after making the animals and it seemed to work really well (at this stage they are not fragile).

The crayola magic does seem to stick to tables etc so I had each child work on a plastic bag.  They also painted the animals on these bags too and then I slid the whole bag with the animals onto their 
landscapes to dry (then no need to name).  I turned them over after a day so they could dry underneath.

The following week I hot glued all the animals on (each child told me where) and they took the artwork home.

The Results: