Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Meet Helen Frankenthaler

I used this Helen Frankenthaler video with my primary students after introducing wet into wet watercolor painting techniques today and it really went well.  My goal for my primary kids is to get them up and painting right away.  In this lesson I focused hard on teaching the routines and procedures we use when we paint, how to use a watercolor set, and how to care for the brush, you know the drill.


I had a demonstration table set up and showed them a couple ways of laying the paint onto the paper.  I showed them how to make long feathery strokes, how to make dabs and dots with their brush.  We watched the colors bloom on the page and blend into each other.  We looked at the color wheel and some decided to set the paints down in "rainbow order".  We found some beautiful classical music on the internet and I'm not kidding you, you could have heard a pin drop.  It's so much fun moving the brush to the music.

I had the Frankenthaler video set to go.  As our painting time came to a close I fired it up.  I asked the kids to watch it and notice similarities and differences between Helen Frankenthaler's paintings and the painting they did today.  While they were watching I helped move their creations to the drying rack.

Next week we'll talk about and practice making and naming different kinds of lines.  Their final composition will be made on top of these using black paint, white paint, and a variety of lines....stay tuned.  That was the plan.  Some of these look perfect the way they are! 

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