Sunday, October 31, 2010

Watercolor Alphabet

Writing the alphabet into a grid with crayons feels great! I had the distinct impression that I had drifted back through the years and was sitting in my first grade class room. As for the watercolors, I love them! Overall I really enjoyed both the process and result on this one. It reminds me of a lot of the art I've seen for a child's bedroom.

Here's the original idea from Art Project for Kids.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Paul Klee's Castle and Sun

This one is based on a work called "Castle and Sun" by Swiss artist Paul Klee. I drew a grid with pencil on brown construction paper and then divided many of the blocks into smaller blocks or triangles. Then I went over the lines with white oil pastel and colored the sections in with chalk pastels, picking out a palette of colors similar to the original.

I enjoyed the process, but it came out looking sloppier than I anticipated. Next time I would draw the lines with a ruler and maybe forego the white oil pastel in favor of chalk pastel. But I am happy with the overall brightness of the chalk pastel on dark colored construction paper. And I love the sun!

Friday, October 29, 2010

More Colored in Boxes

I really enjoyed coloring with oil pastels again on this one. I'm not really impressed with my color choice, but it helped me realize 1) the difficulty in picking colors that will look good together and 2) planning ahead with color harmonies is a good idea. After scanning it in I played around with the colors in Photoshop by making a selection box around one rectangle at a time and using the enhance>adjust color>hue/saturation function. I ended up posting the original; nothing I came up with was that much better, and I realized that color combos like this can be interesting to study even if they're not particularly stunning.

Making these big blocks of color with oil pastels inspired me to a goal: use them till there gone!

Here's a link to the original idea at Art Projects for Kids.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Mondrian Painting

This one was fun to do. The original idea was to use water colors that would be kept in by the black crayon lines. My water colors come in tubes and there was no primary red so I opted for watered down acrylics. I enjoyed using acrylics again, but I think the water colors would be better for this since they wouldn't leave such bold brush strokes.

This would be a fun one to scan in and play with digitally. Here's the original idea on Art Projects for kids. Her instruction for making the boxes were very helpful!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Chalk Houses

This one was messier then I expected! I like the end result more than the process. I think it's the strong black lines with bright colors that I like so much. I also like the texture of the chalk pastels on the black paper.

I looked at a picture of some Dutch row houses and used a pencil to draw the outline of the houses with windows and doors. Then I went over the lines thickly with black pastel. I haven't used pastels in a long time and I had forgotten how hard it is to keep a sharp edge! You also get very messy fingers and the chalk dust has to be frequently blown away from your picture. Still, though, I enjoy seeing the end result and it's always good just to get your hands into something!

Here's a link to the original idea on Art Projects for Kids. It was inspired by another Kandinsky piece.

Paper Towel Birds

This one just sort of happened when I used a paper towel to clean up after refilling my color print cartridge. I ran some water over it to get the blotches to spread and blend. After it dried I used a black sharpie marker to outline some shapes that I saw, kind of like a rorschach inkblot test.

I think this would work just as well with markers as the beginning source for the color blotches. I like the contrast of soft, blended colors and sharp, black outlines. I also like the movement that came from the water flowing down which was emphasized with the flying of the birds.

Contour Leaves

I had fun with the different mediums on this one. I really like the black marker outlines with colored pencil inside. I just have a very cheap set of colored pencils, but even with those it was fun to mix them to try to match the coloring on my fall leaves. I also learned something about leaf veins by looking closely at my leaves and picking out the major ones to draw with marker. The crayon contours were relaxing to draw--I just did one line around each leaf and then cycled around again to do the second, third, and so on. I like the energy they add, and they make me think of leaves falling in a pool of water, sending out ripples in every direction.

Here's a link to the original idea and instructions at Art Projects for Kids.

Kandinsky Oil Pastel Circles

I have an old box of oil pastels that I got at a garage sale about 20 years ago. I thought they weren't much different from crayons, but using them to make this I found that I like the intense colors and slicker feel of them. Newer ones would probably be even nicer. I see on Amazon that Crayola has a set.

I like this project because it doesn't involve much thinking, but the result is still bright and interesting. You just fold your paper in half (hot dog style) and then in thirds the other way. I did mine with warm and cool colors, but that's optional. Here's the link to the original idea at Art Projects for Kids.

This project also got me interested in Kandinsky. Here's a link to a page that has some of his work. And here's a short section I copied from Wikipedia that really interested me:
It was not until 1896, at the age of 30, that Kandinsky gave up a promising career teaching law and economics to enroll in art school in Munich....Also in 1896, prior to leaving Moscow, he saw an exhibit of paintings by Monet and was particularly taken with the famous impressionistic Haystacks which, to him, had a powerful sense of colour almost independent of the objects themselves. Later he would write about this experience:
That it was a haystack the catalogue informed me. I could not recognize it. This non-recognition was painful to me. I considered that the painter had no right to paint indistinctly. I dully felt that the object of the painting was missing. And I noticed with surprise and confusion that the picture not only gripped me, but impressed itself ineradicably on my memory. Painting took on a fairy-tale power and splendour.