Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Kids Art Lesson on Henri Matisse

After searching Pinterest and the internet for a couple of weeks, I put together a lesson plan for my K-5 Homeschool art students on Henri Matisse.

List of Supplies:

  • 12"x12" or 11"x14" Stretched Canvas(one for each student)
  • Colored Cardstock
  • Sponges
  • Foam Brushes
  • Mod Podge
  • Plastic Plates to use as palettes
  • Scissors
  • Sample cut-outs to trace if needed

I had set up a display of children's books on Henri Matisse. My library had a wonderful selection to chose from!  The title that I liked the most and pertained to our lesson was this book:

After I read the book to the kids, I brought out my laptop and showed them this video of Henri Matisse working.  The kids couldn't get over his large scissors!

I let the kids pick any colors that they wanted from my stack of colored cardstock.  Most did not have a problem jumping right in and cutting away.  I did have some cut-outs of organic shapes that I had made for students that seemed stuck but I only had one child use them.  Each shape was attached to the canvas via Mod Podge.  They used cut-up sponges to do this.  I have to emphasize to the kids that the Mod Podge would dry clear.

Here are some of the works that the students did:
Rebecca, age 10

Genivive, age 10

Lily, age 8

Joseph, age 8

Lynn, age 10

Joseph, age 8

If you are interested in learning more about Henri Matisse and what he dubbed "his second life", this short video gives some good background info.

Thanks for stopping by!

Monday, February 15, 2016

"Lexie", Acrylic on Panel, 6"x6"

Well, I finished the "Lexie" painting last night.  I couldn't decide if I was happy with it and kept on working and working on it.  Sometimes I suffer from "detailatis" where I venture on trying to create every individual hair on the animal.  I end up hating how it looks when I do this.  I tried not to do this on this painting.

I will be sending this off to my friend.  Hopefully it will help to heal her heart a little.

Thanks for stopping by and checking out my blog!

Sunday, February 14, 2016

Winter Blues

I have been a funk for a long time now and I just can't snap out of it.  I would be worried if I didn't have the prior knowledge of knowing that I always feel this way this time of year.  Everything is so dead looking and the weather has been cold that it has been hard to drag myself out of bed in the morning.

Add to the fact that I know it has been a good solid 2 weeks since I have gone out for a walk.  I pretty much walk every day in the woods near my home.  Even if it is a short walk I still feel like it does wonders to my mental outlook.  This weekend it has been so cold that I can't fathom going out for a walk.

I was laying around yesterday and I finally convinced myself that I needed to have my mind engaged to temporarily get myself out of this funk.  I find that even if I spend a small amount of time in my studio using my hands to create or focus on something creative that it keeps my mind off of other things.

A typical view in my studio.  It's daylight though; I rarely have the luxury of painting during the day.
I have been meaning to paint a dog portrait of a good friend of mine's dog who passed away a couple of weeks ago.  I always feel better when I do something for someone else that I thought it would be a win-win situation.
My walking companion is down and depressed too!

I scanned her photos on Facebook to come up with some good pictures to work with.  Here are a couple:
Lexie Reference Photo #1
Lexie Reference Photo #2

I am finding that I am having more success working with bad reference photos then I did a few years ago.  I actually tried to paint "Lexie"about 6-7 years ago and absolutely *hated* the results.  The only thing that I liked was the Persian rug that Lexie was laying on.  Hence, I ended up trashing the painting.  I ended up choosing Reference Photo #1 to work with.
I am working on a 6"x6" panel which I glazed with Prussian Blue and then Quinacridone Red
I got a good start on it and started getting into it.  I worked out all of the major areas and took a break in order to make my kids dinner.
The start of my dog portrait

My plan is to finish up this painting this weekend.  Check by the blog tomorrow and I should have the finished painting.  

Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

"Taylor", Acrylic on Wood, 6"x6"

Finished and delivered another commission this week.  This is a cute portrait of a precious dog named Taylor.

I have been experimenting by adding glazes to the canvas before I draw in the dog.  I like the effect it is making in the white areas of the subject.

I have been working in my studio on a few pieces that I hope we be completed shortly.

Thanks for stopping by!