Thursday, April 19, 2012

Oil Pastels and BABY OIL - Part 2

Drying still life paintings
2nd graders made their still life mixed media art this week. They were working from a photo (in my last post) enlarged on the Smartboard. We talked about where each of the fruits were positioned and I demonstrated how to use the oil pastel first,


shade with a bit of black and then blend all together with a Q-tip dipped in baby oil.

We talked about starting with the apple in the very center and emphasized making it about the size of a real apple or their fist. After that, the kids were on their way making their fruit. I  must say, it is a pretty forgiving media and very easy for the kids to handle successfully.

When they finished their fruit I showed them how they could draw in the plate and the horizontal line to divide the table from the background.

These were done with oil pastel to act as a barrier to keep the liquid watercolor from wandering too far.

The last step was to quickly paint the plate and background using a wet on wet watercolor technique. They had yellow, blue and red liquid watercolors. It comes concentrated and I diluted it about 50% and still got pretty vibrant colors.

We reviewed how to clean the brush between colors and use the sponge to dab off excess water. It was interesting to me how some kids were willing to explore mixing the colors on  paper and others were more timid in their work. I love it when everyone leaves feeling totally successful!!
I LOVE all the secondary colors that the students created:))

20 comments:

  1. Beautiful still life. I can't wait to try it.

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  2. I love the way they look and the materials you used. I think if I tried this I'd set up a couple of fruits on each table so that each student has a slightly different composition.

    Another thought - it would be a great tie-in with Cezanne and color theory, and then perhaps I'd have the kids shade with the COMPLEMENT instead of with black. They can see that Cezanne used complements in his paintings. Just a thought.......

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    1. Actually I do both of those things when I do this lesson with 3rd graders. We actually looked at Matisse and Renoir along with Cezanne for this lesson. Unfortunately this was one of those "make-up" lessons (the last session with me for the year for these groups) and had to be done in 45 min. It was quite a time constraint. We didn't get to do half of the shading I had originally planned -- oh well, next time:))

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  3. I've never heard of using baby oil! Awesome!!

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  4. did you do them on watercolor paper? They look amazing :)

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    1. We used a variety of donated illustration board (like Crescent). Some worked better than others with the watercolor depending on how porous they were. But the oil pastel and baby oil worked well on all.

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  5. You have some very talented 2nd graders, my dear! These are simply lovely!

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  6. Love these! You inspired me to go buy some oil pastels for my own dabbling as well as for sharing with my students. Great lesson, and thank you for including the steps since I'm not familiar with the oil pastel/baby oil technique. Great job second graders!

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  7. Not sure if I said this on any of your other posts...but these are truly beautiful!! Love them!!!

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  8. I love all your lesson ideas!! I have never tried this baby oil technique so will definitely give it a go!!

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    1. This was the first time I had tried it. I was so pleased that I am thinking about new ways to use the technique this coming year!!

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  9. Love this lesson- especially how you used the measure of their hand to approximate the apple as a starting point.
    Wondering which liquid watercolors you are having such good luck with. We have some that fade disappointingly as they dry.
    Thanks! Sue

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    1. Thanks, Sue!! I've been using SAX Liquid Watercolor. We get an educator price ordering from them and it has been fine for the projects I've tried so far (as long as I don't dilute it too much). I had to experiment a bit to determine what "too much" would be:))

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  10. I have accidentally stumbled upon your blog and cannot get enough! I have been teaching in elementary for 30 years--mostly first graders. Then I was put into the 5th grade art room 7 years ago! I love art--had always included it in my classrooms, but am not formally trained in it! I have found such joy in the learning of the ways to create and share that with kids. It's been and continues to be a great journey-- bit your blog and all of those who respond have taught me so much. I simply can't get enough!, love this lesson and will b doing it this year for sure. You not only teach the kids--but you bring learning to those of us Out here in blog land. Thanks so much!!

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    1. Thanks, I agree that the blogging community is a great resource for us all. It's fun to see what everyone else is doing -- kind of helps to make the world a smaller, friendlier place! I'm glad that our sharing has been helpful to you:))

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  11. You have wonderful lesson ideas :)

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  12. I found your blog post after googling for ideas for oil pastel to do something different with my still life unit. I blogged about it and linked to your post. Thanks for sharing!
    http://www.conantelementaryart.blogspot.com/2013/12/still-life-oil-pastel-drawings-grade-4.html

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    1. Thanks for sharing your kids' work. I am glad to hear they enjoyed the process. Thanks, also for linking!!

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  13. I'm trying this now with my 2nd and 3rd graders. I'm having a problem getting them to draw the fruit the right size. I'm getting cherry sized apples!! We're using watercolor paper. It's thick enough so there isn't many dark oily spots everywhere.

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    1. As far as the size, I usually give kids a reference for the fruit. In this case I suggested making their apple the size of their fist. That helped with the size of all the fruits. When I am using oil pastel I almost always use cardstock from Staples or plain white sulfite drawing paper. I don't think I have every tried this technique on watercolor paper.

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