Tuesday, June 23, 2015

It Started With Foam Core

Once upon a time an art teacher had a bunch of left over foam core (yes, that would be me:)). What to do with it?? How about some simple sculptures with a little design thrown in. That is how this all started. All well and fine, but I didn't like it and decided not to use it with kids. That seems to happen a lot when I'm trying to design lessons that will teach something of substance. So I set it aside.

One night I was looking over at it and noticed the shadows created by the raised edges and decided to do a quick sketch.

That made me think of when little kids draw things like tables they often draw the 2 front legs vertically and the back 2 legs protruding out diagonally (instead of leaving them out altogether or just drawing the part they can actually see). I'm not talking about an intentionally abstract rendition, but when kids are trying to represent something realistically and then get frustrated when their drawing doesn't "look real" to them or match what they see. Here we are at the crux of the matter -- what are you really seeing vs. what you think you see. I think little exercises in seeing are FUN and sometimes produce little exploratory gems.

So, curious about how washable watercolor marker shadows would look, using a black Crayola marker, I drew some shadows.

Then, I painted the marker lightly with plain water. (Now, this I like!!)

That was pretty fun!! But, it got me thinking about Holton Rower's drip paintings on plywood art. They truly fascinate me!! 

If you haven't seen this video of the process, it is a good one to check out (HERE).

Anyway, that got me experimenting drawing boxes with dripping paint. Hmm. Drawing the paint dripping is harder than it looks. This would really get kids to focus on changing line direction as the paint moves from a horizontal plane to a vertical drop!!!

This could tie into a Geometry unit. 
A little shading might be a good idea, too.

I think this would be fun to do with older kids.

The final question that came to mind was, "What would it look like to draw a tower looking at it from above?" Instead of using regular blocks, I tried it with organic shapes, using the same watercolor marker and water brushstrokes technique to create the shadows.

Younger students could have a blast with this!!

And just think, all this started with a bunch of left over foam core (which, it seems, I still haven't figured out what to do with)!!!

Hope everyone is enjoying a relaxing summer!

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