Thursday, November 1, 2007

"Antiqued" Oil Pastel Flowers in a Vase

"What does antique mean? " I asked my enthusiastic group of third graders.
"Something that's not new," said the girl who is always first to raise her hand.
"Yes," I said. "But can you give me more detail?"
Hands shot up. "I know!" said one boy. "It means old. Like my mom."
"Hmm." I know this kid's mom and she's my age. "Not exactly. What about if I said I had an antique dresser. What would that mean?"
"That you couldn't afford a new one," another boy answered.
Good grief. Ask a simple question....

All I wanted to say was that we were going to "antique" our oil pastel drawings in art class. But what I got instead was the reason I teach in the first place. Kids say the cutest things!

Step One:
On the white board, demonstrate how to draw a vase, a table line, then circles for the center of the flowers. Give them different options for drawing the petals.
Then, ask the kids to chose a favorite color from the pastel palette with the rule that it should be a dark color. The kids then draw their vase, table line, flower centers, petals, leaves and stems. Using any color they wish, color in the shapes.

Tip: When the kids are about halfway through their coloring (slow part), demonstrate step 2. This gets them motivated!

Step Two:
Now for the fun part: Scrunching!!!
Demonstrate how to take their beautifully colored picture and crunch it together. Because the paper is stiff, the kids literally have to sit on their crushed up balled of paper or push hard with their hands in order to get the required wrinkles. After smoothing out the paper, the kids applied a watercolor wash to the entire surface.

Note: A tempera wash doesn't work. Liquid watercolor is best. I put out two containers of wash; one brown and one blue. The kids can chose which one they like.
When the wash settles in the wrinkles, it gives the picture an "antiqued" look.


Anonymous said...

What type of paper do you use for this project?

Patty Palmer said...

Hi Amy,
Believe it or not, regular white construction paper. More specifically, Tru-Ray Sulphite Construction Paper. We supply it as our basic art paper in school. It's available though every art catalog.

Anonymous said...

How do you avoid smudgnign the oil pastel too much when scrunching?

Patty Palmer said...

You don't! That's the beauty of it.

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