Sunday, February 12, 2012

Happy Digital Scratch Art Valentine's Day!

Happy Valentine's Day everyone!  I hope you enjoy this art Valentine that I Photo-shopped especially for you.  
It's funny how one thing leads to another isn't it?  
Middle School students requested scratch art when I polled them last week.  And we're about to get started when I happened across Nicole Dalesio's PhotoShop for Kids of All Ages.  Her tutorials are tops! Things being as the are, digital scratch art caught my eye and I had to give it a go.   Super simple and a great "getting started with Photoshop" project for kids.  Basically, open a new file.  Go to "layers" and select "new fill layer" select gradient.  Choose the gradient you want.  Go to "layers"  select "new fill layer" select black.  Use the eraser tool to scratch.  It's that easy.
Do you include digital art projects in your lessons?  
Why or why not?
I'm going to try this one with kids this month.
Lots of other great projects on Nicole's site and I hope you'll check them out.
Happy Scratching!  

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Drawing Comics is Easy (except when it's hard)

I just ordered this book "Drawing Comics is Easy" written and illustrated by 7 year old Alexa Kitchen.  Found it for $1.99 used on Amazon + 3.99 shipping.  Wonder who will enjoy it  or the kids?

Thursday, February 2, 2012

I Like Cats

First and second graders read "I Like Cats" by Anushka Ravishankar and various artists.  The book is about a brood of very moody cats.  The illustrations come from the Gond Tribal artists of India.  Gond people have a very long and very beautiful artistic tradition.  They create narrative works using beautiful patterns.  The designs were traditionally used to decorate the outside of homes, but given paint and paper are now being produced for a larger audience.  It's wonderful to know that art can be used to generate income  for the Gond community who live remotely and in many cases in extreme poverty.  It's wonderful to know that work is being done to preserve the future of Gond art so that it can be enjoyed by the next generation.  I purchased this little book from Tara books.  The book is entirely handmade.  Each image is silk screened by hand in India and bound by hand.    
After reading the book and looking at the images students thought about different personalities cats might have and designed a moody cat of their own...hungry cats, scaredy cats, shy cats,  and wild cats.  Lots of moody cats are on the prowl.  We outlined with brush and paint and then applied color with chalk pastels blending carefully with one finger.