Monday, June 8, 2015

Middle School Mural, Part Two

Progress continues with my 5th grade Artists of the Week, as we create a new mural for our school. Here we are on Day Two, blocking in solid areas of color. 

  We are copying a masterwork of the contemporary artist Romero Britto.
He is a Brazilian-American and his work is part cubism, pop art and graffiti.
"Britto uses vibrant colors and bold patterns as a visual language of hope and happiness, reflecting his optimistic faith in the world around him." What better way to beautify
our school environment than to pay tribute to an artist with such a wonderful way
of looking at the world!
These kinds of projects are so wonderful and accomplish many goals for a school community, including beautification, school spirit, teamwork, and participating a large-scale community artwork.  
Even though students consider this a fun afternoon activity, the are learning how to cooperate, how to paint on an upright surface (not an easy task), and how to scale an image by using the grid method. They are also learning about breaking down an image into stages that help to recreate it in an order that makes sense: large broad flat areas of color, smaller patterns and details, and final outlines and accents.

Please check back for updates and pictures of the finished mural.

Monday, June 1, 2015

Great Art Sites for Kids—Artopia on PBS

On the website for my local PBS station, I recently found Artopia. Here you can watch the pilot episode of the children's cartoon featuring the young artist Nina, and her two best friends/creations named Little and Streak. In this episode, a stained glass king has his crown stolen by a monster, and the trio venture into Artopia to track down the monster and retrieve the crown.

Along the way they meet creations of art from different parts of the world, and from different time periods depicting various monsters and creatures. There is also a game where you can create your own monster using different body parts, colors and patterns, as featured in the show. Here's a monster I created using the head of the demon Arghan, from India, and the body of Skylla, a beast from Greek mythology.

Unfortunately this series didn't take off, so I think that's why the "Share What You Think" section is now defunct. But it's fun to watch the episode and design some monsters. It was great timing for me to find this site, as I am currently working on a lesson with my 5th graders about gargoyles, grotesques, and chimeras! And there's a special place in my heart for red-headed artists! Have a look and create a monster or two.