Painting still life is so much easier then painting people. I’ve never heard of an apple complaining: “Oh no! You’ve made me look fat in that picture!” or banana saying: “I don’t look THAT yellow, do I?” Milk jars and vases can stay motionless for hours, even days if you ask them nicely. And people? You position and position and then after only five hours they start whining: “I am tired! I need to go to the restroom!” No wonder many artists prefer painting still life. Continue reading Why Still Life? Why Not? Making Measurements For Life Drawing-2.→
Gyotaku was born when Japanese fishermen wanted to record their catches and prove to their friends that they did not have pants on fire when they said they had a nice catch. At the beginning Gyotaku (jaio (fish)+ taku (rub) served only that purpose but since 1800s it became a separate form of art. Continue reading Gyotaku Where You Least Expect It.→
Do you feel it? It’s in the air! Christmas time, wonderful time. The weather is still awesome, but here and there you see a fresh-cut Christmas tree on the roof of a car. Yet it seems so far away; a false feeling because the eve will come quickly and your head will spin. No surprise we are getting ready now, not later, by doing fun Christmas projects like this one. Continue reading Christmas Toys Paper Mache.→
When you think of Mexico you think of bright clothes, spicy food and unusual art. They are able to make extraordinary out of simple things and celebrate the uncelebrated. The Day of the Dead, for example, is one of the most exuberant and lavish holidays in Mexico with lots of festivities, treats and decorations. Being about 2000 miles away from this wonderful country did not stop us from joining the tradition if only by making the sugar skulls which are traditionally made there for the fiesta. Continue reading Calaveras Jersey Style.→
The Scream painting by Edvard Munch can, perhaps, be compared to Da Vinci’s Mona Lisa as far as the popularity is taken into account. It has been featured in cartoons; numerous reproductions have been made with famous characters and who does not remember the Home Alone boy screaming his heart out in the moments of extreme anguish. When I told the kids that we are painting a monster they were so exited they started clapping. Continue reading Art That Screams. Edvard Munch.→
Halloween brings out a lot of creativity in children and their parents. Last week we spent an hour spreading the net on the bushes and hanging spiders, picking what to wear and decorating the mantel. In addition to all that I could not wait to make our fun and easy project. Continue reading A Tea Light Monster.→
This is my four year old daughter’s creation. She spent approximately seven minutes on it, devoting most of her time to producing the right color of blue for the water slide. This is a water park, by the way.
I know a girl who painted President Obama in a striped tie when she was three and it was a pretty darn good portrait.
And you were so good at it! You doodled on the back of your paper, you drew a reindeer behind a couch as a surprise to your parents, you sketched every single day, wished for a set of super expensive watercolor… OK, I am talking about myself here. However, you might also have a story about how you painted a birthday card and everybody was amazed, or how you won a first prize at the high school art show… but your kid doesn’t want to draw!
What? Why? You liked it. Your friend’s daughter likes it. Why is your child not into it?
First of all, don’t panic. As frustrating as it might be, there are big problems out there and this is not one of them. You can still find ways for your child to express himself artistically.
Use unusual materials to cover the surface and draw on flour, beans, sand etc. Kids can use fingers or palms to develop sensory skills.
If your kid likes colors it is OK to give him water cups, brushes and paints. Let him or her create color mixes and use the opportunity to teach about the primary (yellow, red and blue) and secondary (orange, purple, green) colors.
Unconventional ways to paint could be the answer. Utilize wrinkled plastic wrap, sponges of different shapes and sticks.
Paint the leaves and print them on paper. You can make prints with coins, too.
Make Rorschach blots.
My son once used leftover coffee to paint; one of those times when he actually wanted to keep on going.
Shaving cream art. I bought a few bottles at a dollar store and my kids regularly ask me to “make mess” with it. Spread some color on it, mix it, make swirls. You can see how we do it in one of my posts.
Strings. Cut some thick yarn into not very long strings and let them doodle. See here how we do it.
Yes, to me it is still surprizing that my own kids are not fond of drawing but I try not to look at it as a flaw. They have other talents, I am sure; because I’ve never seen an unremarkable child. Ever!
The leaves are about to change, but we are still enjoying warm weather and play outside a lot. Spending time in the nature touches the strings of your soul and gives you inspiration no matter what you do. This week we have learned about the artist who spent one third of his life in forests creating his outstanding masterpieces. His name is Ivan Shishkin and, not surprisingly, he is called The Forest Singer. Continue reading Ivan Shishkin. An Ode to Beautiful Forest. Sponge Painting Technique.→