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Luscious Landscapes A FunArtLessons.com AWESOME ART ACTIVITY By Kari Wilson 1 An Awesome Art Activity appropriate for students age 8-16 in art classes, scout troops, recreation classes, after school clubs, independent study, home school settings © 2009
About the Author Kari Wilson has been an educator for over twenty years, teaching first through sixth grades as well as middle school language arts and social studies. Her current passion is teaching art at a public middle school in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Kari's own education includes a Bachelor of Fine Arts from San Francisco State University, a Master of Fine Arts from the University of Arizona, and a Master of Education, along with teaching credentials. Kari stepped out of the classroom for several years to serve as a Curriculum Associate in a large California school district, where she developed a variety of programs from “Back to School with Basic Health and Safety” to “The Achievement Club,” a program designed to help struggling readers. This program received the Golden Bell award from the California School Boards Association. As a member of the California History Social Science Project (CHSSP), Kari was involved in the development and implementation of numerous social studies units. Kari’s unit, Child Work in Colonial Days, was published by the UCLA branch of CHSSP. Kari has continued exploring her interest in history as a recent participant in a Gilder Lehrman summer institute at the Woodrow Wilson Presidential Library, where she engaged in research for the development of a series of civics lessons which include integrated art activities. These lessons on the Core Democratic Values, as well as her other curriculum units for preschool through 10th grade, are available online at FunLessonplans.com, a companion site to FunArtLessons.com. © About Awesome Art Activities These art activities are great for a birthday party, rainy afternoon at home or as a special activity in a classroom, daycare, or recreation setting. Awesome Art Activities can be completed in an hour or so. Awesome Art Activities are fun and engage children in imaginative and creative processes. Every Awesome Art Activity includes an art appreciation/ art history slide show highlighting the art work of an artist or art movement. Open-ended questions encourage creative thinking and interesting discussion. Prior art experience in not necessary for either the children or an adult leading the activity. Materials for these activities are inexpensive or free. You may even find that you already have everything you need at home! “These awesome activities are kid-tested by my two children and their friends at home as well as my elementary and middle school students!” 2
Getting Started Luscious Landscapes 1. This Awesome Art Activity is appropriate for children and adults of all ages. This art activity is fun and easy to do alone or with groups of any size. 2. Gather the materials needed: Cardboard, about 8” x 10”, recycle! Use cereal boxes or old file folders, tag board or poster board. white glue such as Elmer's, thinned one part glue to one part water. Keep in a plastic lidded container such as a yogurt tub. One glue container for up to 4 children. scissors Foam craft brush, 1”-4” wide, or an old house paintbrush. One per child. Gift or craft tissue in a variety of colors, used tissue is perfect, provide a range of colors. Tissue is available in the gift wrap sections of most grocery stores as well as craft supply stores. Cut tissue into pieces about 4”x6”. Have 4-8 pieces in a variety of colors for each child. Images of landscapes (slides 4-7) Newspaper to cover work surface. Gloss medium, (optional) available in the acrylic paint section of art stores, will give finished landscape a shiny surface and brighten the color of the tissue. 3. Arrange the workspace so that work surfaces are covered with newspaper and children can easily share glue containers and scissors. 4. Explain the project: You will create a beautiful landscape using colored tissue and glue. 5. Set the stage for the activity by looking at some landscapes. This may mean simply looking out the window and asking children what they see. Or view slides 4-7 as you discuss the questions. Possible responses are shown along the left side of each slide. 6. After viewing the landscapes, follow the steps 1-6 outlined in slides 8-13 to create your own “Luscious Landscape.” Show the slides to your group or demonstrate each step as you go. 3© 2009
Landscapes © Giovanni Giacometti Herbstabend, 1903
© Jeong, Seon After the Rain at Mt. Inwang Ink on paper, 1751 How does your gaze travel as you look at this landscape? What did the artist do to make your eyes travel through the painting? The gaze is carried from the foreground to the background along the curved lines of tree groupings and rows of mountains. The viewer’s eyes are constantly brought back to the small group of buildings in the foreground by the flowing curves of mountains and hills.
© Johan Christian Dahl Vesuvius Erupting, 1826 Can you find the people in this landscape? Why do you think the artist chose to paint the figures so small? There are two silhouetted figures near the edge of the volcano which suggests both the grand scale of the volcano as well as mankind's relative unimportance in the face of nature. Two figures with donkeys rest in the lower right hand corner suggesting an ease with the event that is taking place.
© Find the foreground, middle ground and background in this painting. How much of the painting does each ‘ground’ take up? How does the artist show distance in this landscape? Berthe Morisot The Cornfield, 1875 The foreground shows a path leading to the lower left corner which takes the viewer to the middle ground: a wide swath of golden corn and a figure. Across the background stretches the clustered building and trees of a village with a summer sky. This landscape is divided into thirds, a classic composition for landscape painting. The figure standing at the back edge of the foreground in comparison to the small buildings at the front edge of the background helps create the illusion of distance.
Step 1 Gather Materials and Ideas Cover your work surface with newspaper to keep it clean! Get a paint brush, white glue and a piece of cardboard. Write your name on the back of the cardboard. Decide what your foreground will be. Is it a river, a meadow, a city street, a snowy yard? Choose a few small pieces of tissue in colors that will be a good base for the type of foreground you want. For instance, use light and dark green for a meadow, or white and light blue for a snow scene. © 2009
Step 2 Create the Foreground Paint a thin layer of white glue in the lower portion of your board. You decide how wide the foreground will be. Tear a piece of tissue off and gently press it into the glue with your brush. Do the same with the second color, overlapping the first color in some places as shown. Brush glue all over the top of the tissue. Let it wrinkle and overlap. This adds texture and visual interest! © 2009
Step 3 Create the Background Decide what your background will be such as sky, treetops, houses mountains, rain clouds... Choose a few colors for the background. For instance, dark blue and purple for a night sky, orange and pink for a bright morning or grey and green for a storm. Glue your background tissue allowing it to overlap and wrinkle. © 2009
Step 4 Add Details to the Background Using scissors cut shapes for details.Tearing shapes out of the tissue is another great way to create interesting textures. Keep your shapes simple. Skyscrapers can be overlapping rectangles. Think of tree trunks or mountains as basic shapes such as rectangles and triangles. Continue to build up layers of tissue by adding smaller and smaller details. You may want to include something tiny such as a human figure, in the farthest area of your background to help create the illusion of depth. © 2009
Step 5 Add Detail to the Foreground Continue to create your landscape by adding details to the foreground. Remember items closer to the viewer will be larger. Try adding something very large such as a tree branch or a street sign or a person that extends across the picture plane. This will help create the illusion of depth. Continue to brush a thin layer of white glue on top of the tissue. © 2009
Step 6 Finish Put your landscape somewhere flat to dry overnight. If your cardboard curls just place it under a few heavy books, and it will flatten out. If you have gloss medium, paint this on the dry landscape to give it a shiny surface. © 2009
The End Thank you for using this FunArtLessons.com Awesome Art Activity. 14© Special thanks to Wikimedia Commons for providing access to copyright free images used in this power point lesson.
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