Sunday, April 11, 2010

Watercolors and Oil Pastel Resist

Thank you all for reading the blog posts and for your interest in these wonderful children and their creative work. I love documenting these experiences and sharing what I see with you. Up until now, I have been doing a blog post for each individual class- which is extremely time-consuming (but still really fun!). So in an effort to redeem some precious evenings away from the computer, I am going to condense the class documentation into one weekly blog post. I hope you continue to enjoy them!
For the second week of our spring session, we began with oil pastel drawings. On the table, I set out paper and small cups filled with oil pastels for the children to use. Oil pastels are fun for young children because they have brilliant colors and glide smoothly onto the paper. They are also a great starting point for watercolor painting because they resist the watercolor and will show through the paint.
Jacob gets right into the oil pastel as he waits for the others to arrive.

Lucia and Karuna trade colors.

Lucia had gotten up from her seat when Richie arrived, so he promptly sat down and began to add to her drawing. Lucia, unattached to her work, moved seats and began a new drawing. I love to see the different reactions to sharing artwork. From my experience it seems as though something changes at around age 3, and children begin to feel an ownership of their work.

For my older class (3 and 4 year-olds), I decided to offer them mirrors with the oil pastels and prompted them to do self-portraits.

Anna draws a few different self-portraits next to each other. maybe one is her face and the other her body?

As Jessica drew she said, "I'm a boy!" Then she made circles around her face and said, "I'm in a cage." Drea (her mother) mentioned that she had just been to the Zoo.

Jason pays close attention to the details, making sure to add hair and ears (and later a shirt) to his drawing.

Karuna decides to draw on the mirror instead.

In each class, I began to bring out liquid watercolors as soon as I felt them loose interest in drawing.
As kirsten worked on her painting, she continually asked, "more?" She wanted more watercolor in her bowls. I want the children to be in control of their own art materials, but this time I wasn't sure how to do this. Later I realized that I could have filled a squeeze bottle with water and a little color in it for Kirsten to use herself. That way she would be able to have as much as she wanted, whenever she wanted. I'll remember this for next time!

Grace works on her painting, adding glitter to the watercolor.

Anna continues to look into the mirror as she paints her self-portrait.

Jordan exclaimed, "I'm making a tractor!" Then Karuna pointed at her own painting and said, "tractor!"

As the children paint and move around the studio, they gather more materials to work with at the table.

Logan collected brushes and arranged them in one of the paint jars.

After painting on the paper, I offered the children paper towels to use with the watercolors. Rogan tests out his brush and paint on the paper towel.

Lucia spotted the button jar on the shelf and asked to use them. I brought them out along with the tub of collage materials and glue. They began to glue the materials to their paintings.

Some of our watercolor easel work...

Towards the end of class, I brought out watercolor spray bottles to use at the easels.
Kirsten's dad, Kevin, helps her pull the spray trigger.

Most of the children are just beginning to learn how to use the bottles. They are loving the task!

Karuna is interested in wiping down the watercolor once it is sprayed on the acrylic easel.

The older kids worked on spraying a large drop cloth outside.

On warm days, clean-up time can be so much fun!

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