Northern Lights Art Project

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This is now officially one of my favorite winter lessons. I created these pictures with first-graders in about 60 minutes and it went really well. We started talking about Ernst Kirchner and Expressionism. We noticed that he uses warm and cool colors and created a bold contrast in his work. So, we looked for warm and cool colors in other artists’ paintings, talked about how the colors make us feel, and what do they make us think of.

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Then, I showed them pictures of the Northern Lights and we talked about how we could paint them like Expressionists – focus on our emotion rather than reality and to exaggerate the colors and sharp lines:

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And of course, we had to add some animals that could see the Northern Lights (the first-graders are now talking about animals, habitats and are starting to explore the world on maps… so it tied nicely to their science lessons). We got everything: from polar bears and arctic hares to musk ox and a high-jumping killer whale.

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Top 5 Winter Landscapes – Art Projects for Kids

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Are you looking for more winter-landscapes ideas for your kids? We have put together some of our favorites from our favorite bloggers!

Here they are:

01

Beautiful warm or cool trees in the snow:  http://sandbergsmartyarties.blogspot.com/2013/01/christmas-art.html

02

Watercolor landscapes: http://arteascuola.com/2013/01/polar-landscapes/

03

Birch trees in the snow: http://www.deepspacesparkle.com/2011/01/10/birch-trees-watercolor-lesson/

04

3D North Pole in a box: http://janedavitt.dreamwidth.org/243233.html

05

Stunning skies and hills with chalk: http://splishsplashsplatterart.blogspot.ca/2010/11/winter-landscapes.html

Do you have any other favorites?

January Issue: Kirchner and Winter Landscapes

January issue of arTree magazine is here! Have you checked it out yet? I will share some preview with you this week, for now here is a little sample of the projects:

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Don’t stay inside this winter! Explore snowy landscapes with Ernst Ludwig Kirchner and German Expressionism. Play around with cool and warm colors to create dramatic contrast and make your landscape scenes like none other. Discover the art of Josef Kote and decorate your mountains with patterns out of lines and shapes. Fill your skies with colors that will make the Northern Lights fade with envy.

Visit the polar bears and the penguins. Learn why they can never meet each other and what they do to stay warm in such cold places. Research the polar bears with us to create your very own infographic poster. Then paint your polar bear under the stunning Aurora sky.

Dress up your penguin in a warm and cozy sweater and paint him on the South Pole–using several easy and fun watercolor secrets that we will share with you. Play games, learn facts and explore the great snowy outdoors.  

Watercolor techniques and Penguins

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Watercolors are always fun with the little ones. Especially, once you show them how to explore different watercolor techniques.

  • What happens when you paint with watercolors and then dab it with a paper towel before it dries?
  • What happens if you drop lemon onto the wet watercolors?
  • What if you put salt on the watercolor before it dries?
  • What if you crumble a plastic wrap onto the wet watercolor paper and leave it there until it dries (at least partly)?

Just make sure, the kids do not use too much. The piles of salt or the puddles of lemon juice sound like a good idea but they can destroy even the thickest watercolor paper.

If you are up to it, you can even fill the whole page with only one color, add a little painted (and cut out) penguin in a cute sweater and you have a South Pole scene that is refrigerator-worthy. Learn more in our January 2015 issue (coming out early next week).

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Happy New Year 2015!

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Happy New Year! 

Let’s fill this year with lots of color and creativity!

Have you chosen your new year’s resolution yet? Are you going to? Well, I am.

I pledge to work hard to bring even more art projects and ideas to my readers – in the magazine as well as on this blog. I want to share my everyday little projects, favorite art books and techniques as well as interviews with people who truly inspire me. 2015 here we come!