Sunday, October 25, 2009

Pumpkin Painting @WBCL

So the pumpkins were not huge but no one seemed to care as they carefully chose just the right pumpkin and just the right colors of paint. There was a bit of a line for some parts of this process--good things sometimes take time. Parents and kids and grandparents and kids were everywhere getting into the project. Some people relied on books for ideas for their designs, others just knew what they wanted to put on the pumpkin. Quite a few incorportated the spiders into the design. Lots used the paper shred to give them hair or a base.

We used a variety of magazines from the last few years--Family Circle, Woman's Day, Country Living, All you--and 3 books I have in my stash--Pumpkin Painting by Dan McKinney, Pumpkin Decorating by Vicki Rhodes, and Haunt your house for Halloween by Cindi Fuller. I picked them up at Michaels a few years back. I think newer ones are available. The library has quite a few fall craft books and stories but most are check out. I'll have some of them out on Wednesday night.

This is the 5th year the Wells Branch Community Library has sponsored this event. In previous years the pumpkins have been sponsored by local realtors--this year we were lucky to get pumpkins reasonably at the HEB with paints donated by the Heart of Texas Tolers and Wendy Watson.
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Friday, October 23, 2009

Fall art projects at the school

Fall brings to mind the stories of the settlement of the United States and the relationship of the settlers to the  tribes of "americans" in place. Explaining the difference between the expected "indians" and the ones the settlers found did the trick. Explaining the bonnets  the women wore was much harder.
I think they really just wanted to create the people. The paper tube project is a bit of a stretch for the 1st graders but they managed nicely, painting the faces then dressing the rolls and applying yarn hair. The tops of the hats didn't happen but faces were produced and for a 1 hour project that they did with little help--great job.

The second grade has a new task--learning to put things into size perspective as they draw. We talked about how ugly the design would be before we were done which helped a lot! Drawing with light lines will be a challenge but they are doing it--petals were a good match for the centers and a few had time to add color. We had a little time to talk about Vincent VanGogh and his sunflowers. They want to do some of Leonardo Da Vinci's work and a bit of art history about him so we will see how the drawing goes. They did a fine job on this one.

Painting Animals on Rocks @ the Wells Branch Library

Just when you think there is not a new thing to paint on--rocks appear. Actually I have this great set of books by Lin Wellford: Painting Animals on Rocks that I bought a few years ago. It calls for rather nice sized landscape rocks--nice smooth rocks--but all I had was cluncky, chunky ones and tiny smooth ones. We looked at then and got a feel for the creature within and started drawing and painting. One of them looked like a snake's face to me--not to the artist who used it. Another seemed to be a perfect beaver--she says it is a dog. Parents really got into this with their kids and by themselves--the cat at the top was done by a mom. Very detailed snakes were coiled on tiny rocks with lots of stripes--are snakes blue?
The group meets every Wednesday night at 6pm at the Wells Branch Community Library using the "storytime" room.
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Thursday, October 15, 2009

Foil fish in a stream at the Wells Branch Library

This turned out to be more complicated, more fun and not at all like the lesson plan I found! First we painted the wavy stream with blue tempra in 2 shades--some were wavier than others. Then we were to smudge in a little white foam on the peaks of the waves--we really got into the smuding and have lots of bubbling and boiling in our streams. It was great fun for them.

Lastly the foil fish--true to recycling we used previously used foil and cut it into fish shapes, folding over the edges and pinching in the area above the tail to make it fish-like. we were supposed to press them onto netting to get dimension but we had plenty already. We colored the foil with markers to give them a bit more realistic look and glued them onto the stream.

This worked well for all the kids from 3yrs to pre-teen. Clean up was a breeze too. This is a great program that the Wells Branch Community Library sponsors each week.
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3rd Grade paints from Picturing America

This was the last week of art work for the class on Native Americans. The kids have done medalions with geometric designs and fringed beaded edges and a clay totem. The last project was a watercolor painting of one of the Picturing America prints: George Catlin Painting the Portrait of Mah-to-toh-pa–Mandan. We had a lot of fun with trying to get clouds in the sky and keep the browns thin enough to see the figures on the drawings. One of the students decided that the trees had to have apples. We used watery tempra on card stock and it worked pretty well--spillage aside!
The print can be viewed on the Picturing America site--#6b. 
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Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Life cylces in Multi-media with 4th grade

We got a little out there but with great results. The students researched the life cycles of their animal then created a circular cycle on a poster. They got to choose the type of items to create the depictions--clay was a popular addition. One group chose to paint their cycle complete with glitter paints and texture. The bunny group did much more detail on the written part than the art but learned to use tracing paper to transfer their drawings.
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Monday, October 12, 2009

HOTT Tole Month display at Wells Branch Library

What a fantastic variety of handpainted/tole painted items the members of HOTT (Heart of Texas Tolers) are sharing with the public in this display. The top shelf is devoted to holiday items from the bunny thru many Santas and great pumpkins. Peggy really outdid herself on the paper mache as the basket even includes mini vegatables. Many of the items on display are from classes that have been offered during monthly meetings or at special seminars.
Thanks to Wendy Watson, Marie Welsch, Peggy Ashmore and Dianne Koehler for items in this year's display. When I was putting the display together on Saturday several people stopped to look and ask questions. What a great way to share our passion!The display will be in the cases for a few weeks--mid October through early November at the Wells Branch Community Library. A selection of books on painting that can be checked out is also part of the display.
The panda box on the bottom shelf is one of our Memory boxes for the North Austin hospital's berevement program. HOTT members paint and donate more than 40 boxes per year for use in the program that supplies parents who loose a newborn with a box for their memories to help with the grief.
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Thursday, October 8, 2009

Catching up on art in Wells Branch

It has really been a busy and productive couple of weeks for the artistic at the Wells Branch Community Library and the classes I teach at the Renaissance Academy. We have been drawing up a storm everywhere and with all ages. I learned to make an awesome claydough in colors for the school that let us make massive totems with the 3rd grade class. This followed last week when they painted and beaded native american medallions. Adults and teens drew and painted the best realistic sunflower (me too although mine is not complete) as a part of the Picturing America activities. 
Kids at the library and at the school painted and embellished an apple tree scene for Johnnie Appleseed's birthday--including the sleeping in the tree--they all had stories about what was going on in their painting. 
Next week foil fish==sounds like fun!