Saturday, September 28, 2013

Gyotaku Prints and Crayon Resist

Last year I invested in a set of rubber prints for making Gyotaku (Japanese fish prints). You can see last year's lesson here.  I only used them with 2 grade levels last year, so I decided to use them with 2 more grade levels this year (I guess partly to get my money's worth out of the fish!!).

This week, 4th graders watched the video clip of artist Naoki using the printing process. (You can get that link in the above linked lesson.)

Then, one group at a time, students made their prints while the rest of the class created underwater scapes. They had photos of sea grasses, kelp and a variety of coral to look at as they worked with crayon. Then, in the last ten minutes (yep, that is all the time it took) they used liquid water color to make the wet-on-wet wash and create the look of bubbles.
 I demonstrated how to get the look of bubbles by:
          1) Sprinkling small drops of plain water on the drying blue watercolor.
          2) Sprinkling salt
          3) Pressing bubble wrap on the damp paint
I thought that this student did a particularly nice job shading her grasses (to get the feeling of depth). You can also see how the salt not only made the little white bubbles, but also brought out purple from the blue -- LOTS if oohs and ahhs on this project!!!

Here are a few more backgrounds. Next week, student will cut out their fish prints and glue them on. I will be sure to share!
Great movement created by the curvy grasses.

 I like the way this student used bright colors for the coral.
I LOVE the way the water ran on this one!!! Looks like a ray of light coming from above the water.


  1. As always, you are an inspiration! Thanks for sharing. I'll be trying this with my kiddoes.

    1. Thanks -- it is fun to share, isn't it?? Hope you have fun with it in your classroom:)