Musings about the importance and impact of art and art education in the 21st century.

Musings about the importance of art and art education

1st Grade Franz Marc Inspired Turtles

♠ Posted by ArtMuse in at 2:50 PM

To start out the year I had my first graders learn about cubism, Franz Marc, and warm and cool colors.  Watercolor paints are always a great medium to start the year off with and so I used them for this project.  

To begin I demonstrated how to draw a simple turtle and had the students draw their own on 16x20 paper.  They then outlined them in Sharpie so that during painting they would be able to see the outline and it wouldn't smudge when wet. After that I had them glue black construction paper strips onto their paper and explained that every time lines overlap, they create shapes.  They were required to create at least 6 shapes and try to make sure that the black strips were glued securely and touched the the ends of the paper.  

Overall the lesson went  o.k, in hindsight, I would have had them just use black paint for both the turtle and the lines, it was difficult trying to time the drawing portion of the lesson and gluing the black strips.  I had to wait an extra day because the students couldn't start painting with wet glue on their papers.  Also, my biggest problem was the paper I used.  Not having enough watercolor paper i resorted to using 90lb white sulfite paper which just sucked the water up so quick, it became almost impossible to spread the watercolors around to fill in the shapes,  the students really had to sop up their paintbrushes and paper.   
On the upside, the students loved Marc's work and really liked the idea that objects could be created out of shapes and that those shapes didn't necessarily have to look realistic.  As an extension activity I made 2 18x24 size cubist posters and cut them into puzzle pieces for the kids to do.   They really liked it, and the cubist-style made for a pretty challenging puzzle!