Cézanne, the fall is here

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Enjoy the season with Paul Cézanne and his still life paintings. Learn why he painted apples for over 30 years and why it took so long for art critics to appreciate them. Create your own still life with apples, pumpkin and squashes.

Discover how oil blends oil pastels and hairspray makes chalk pastels stick to the paper. Play around with composition and use a flashlight to shine some light on your art while you learn about highlights and shadows. Transfer your art using wet media film and test how observant you are.

Conduct a taste test, pay homage to famous artists with John Nolan and, most of all, enjoy the fall!

Click here to get started (if you subscribe now, you will get additional 12 issues of arTree at no charge).

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Picasso Monsters

Happy Halloween!

We have decided to try the Picasso-inspired monsters project this year. I saw the idea flying around Pinterest a long time ago and waited for the right moment – now it’s here!

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These amazing monsters, ghouls and witches were created by first graders (with no help at all).

I put together a short presentation, if anybody wants to use it. It is one spooky lesson about Pablo Picasso, organic and geometric shapes and faces. Here is the link:

http://1drv.ms/1x9Dmny

It was really a fun lesson and kids were so proud of their creations. They loved seeing what others came up with… from witches, cyclops and scary pirates and zombies to Egyptians, from teeth with cavities to eye patches and curly tongues… and from short hair to horns and loooong and pointy witches hats.

Dream with Marc Chagall

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September issue fo arTree magazine is dedicated to one of my favorite artists: Marc Chagall. I loved his dreamy images ever since I was little and fell for his art once more when I saw his original paintings in NYC. The soft colors, wild perspective and surrealist scenes have always fascinated me… and now, I’d like to share it with you, your kids, students and friends.

In the latest arTree issue you can discover Expressionism, monochromatic colors and the art of Marc Chagall. You get to fly over your city, play violin with goats and ride on a rooster! You can decorate your windows with stained glass just like Daniel Maher and catch your bad dreams! Bake stained-glass cookies and draw a window to your imagination.
If you want to join the adventure, click here to subscribe. If you subscribe by the end of September, you receive 12 issues of arTree for no additional cost.

Learn more about Marc

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Click here to listen to a book ‘Dreamer in a Village.’

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Looking for more art ideas? Click here to get started!

Daniel Maher’s Recycled Windows

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Did you know you can take old glasses and turn them into these stunning windows?

We were very excited when we found Daniel. He is the perfect match for our September issue of the magazine, dedicated to Marc Chagall and Dreams.

So who is he? Daniel is a unique stained-glass artist. He restores old windows and creates new ones. He also recycles old glass plates, bottles and bowls into amazing windows. He puts together everything he finds: pictures of grapes from serving plates and a glass from Mr. Peanut jars or ‘little pig went to a market’ plaque, corn serving plates and a corn mash. He uses objects with history to tell stories with his art. Some are more abstract (capturing emotions) and some more narrative (telling real stories) but all of them are quite fascinating.

And how does he do it? Here’s a little preview:

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Fun in the Sun

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How was your summer? Did you enjoy enough sunshine and absorbed enough energy for the school year? I hope so. I didn’t post anything over the summer months but I stayed busy… this is one of our free summer projects at a local library: Art in the Sun!

We found our inspiration in the art of Pueblo people, this book and Mexican suns:

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We talked about warm and cold colors and designed our suns to have a warm and cool half. We used a pencil to sketch them, sharpie to make them stand out and soft pastels to add some color into them. Then we sprayed it with a hair spray to make sure it does not smudge much. Easy and summery! Makes me wish the fall waited a little bit longer to come… though I am looking forward to the pumpkins.

Claude Monet and his Garden

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With this month’s issue of arTree magazine you can visit Claude Monet’s garden and create a painting of his famous Japanese bridge or a giant water-lily to hang on your wall!

 

What is Impressionism?

Show kids several of Monet’s paintings and ask them to describe what they see. Are there any lines? Black? Are the paintings from inside/outside? What is the most important element used? Why do they think he painted the same scene over and over again?

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Then invite them to visit his garden in Giverny, France:

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Explain that he spent over 20 years designing, working and painting his garden and that he poured most of his money into it. Show the kids some photos from the garden and then take their focus to the bridge or the water lilies:

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Huge water lily pads: K-2
This is the link to the presentation: http://1drv.ms/1mD0PwM
Printable labels: http://1drv.ms/1mD0UAG

For the K (and 1), I would recommend making a template for the kids to trace the water lily pad (or you can predraw them on the black papers before you go into the classroom). When you use the watercolors to saturate the coffee filters, dilute the liquid watercolors a little to get softer colors and encourage kids to paint three of them, crumble them and put them on a side (leave them on a paper plate or just put them on a piece of a scrap paper with their name on it). You can paint the blossoms on the beginning of the lesson or you can set a table aside just for this purpose.

When kids use the oil pastels, remind them to hold the pastels low and press down hard. If they do not press enough, the colors are not going to be vivid and if they do press a lot and hold the pastels too high, they will break.

Encourage the kids to cover the whole surface of the water lily pad and then ask them to cut it out. You may need to glue on the blossoms later on, they will need 1-2 hours to dry (you can use just regular glue).

Reflection Symmetry: 3-5

This is the link to the presentation: http://1drv.ms/1mD12jv
Printable labels: http://1drv.ms/1mD1a2q

Give the kids a little bit of time to think about the garden they want to paint.
You can share some poetry with them to inspire them: http://www.blackcatpoems.com/h/a_daffodil_day.html
Or let them look at some beautiful gardens: http://www.flickr.com/search/?q=garden

Let the kids paint the garden and then write a little poetry (or a short lyrical text) about it. How does the garden make them feel? Why do they think so?

Start the project with folding the paper and make sure kids shade only one half of the painting with their blue pencil/crayon. Then they can start working on their own. Remember to encourage them to fold the painting frequently, so that the paint does not have a chance to dry. When they are done, they can add water lilies to their pond with green construction paper, paint, crumbled tissue paper, potato stamps, finger painting, model magic or anything else you may like to try.

 

Do you want to bring this art program (along with the magazine, more projects and ideas) to your school?

We are running an end-of-the-year promotion: 50% off if you sign up by 5/25! That’s only $125 for the whole school year! Ask us about details: info@arTreeKids.com

Rothko and Color

This art lesson is dedicated to Mark Rothko and warm & cold colors.

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Mark Rothko was an Abstract Expressionist painter. He was looking for ways to capture emotions in the purest forms. From people and mythological stories to organic shapes and then finally: only color.

You can follow links below to download presentations to use with your kids (and your students), showing the different paintings he made before he decided to embrace total abstraction.

Ask the kids what are the cold and warm colors? What emotions tie in with them? Hoe do these colors make them feel?

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Then you can create a project inspired by Mark Rothko.

You can make your own canvas and paint it with watercolors or capture your emotions with color and basic symbols with oil pastels.

K to 2 presentation (make your own canvas): http://1drv.ms/1g3DteD

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This is a really fun project that needs some prep time. You can either cut small pieces of cardboard and the sheets and bring those to the class (one per child) or you can make bigger ones and let them work in groups (easier prep, just make sure you help them stretch the fabric over the cardboard and use a little bit of the glue underneath it). Just cut a piece of cardboard, a piece of sheet and let the kids glue it on. Then use liquid watercolors (and ADD WATER to them – at least 50/50) and paint them with wither warm or cold colors. Why do you need to add water? The canvas is not primed and it will ‘drink’ a lot of the water. You can use paint as well (or instead of the watercolors).

If you want to make the small canvases, you will need approx. 1 large box and 1 crib sheet for 25 kids. I would also recommend to bring several large ‘canvases’ for kids to work on together once they are finished, or watercolor paper so that they can create more artworks (and try both warm and cold colors).

 

3 to 5 presentation (capture your emotions): http://1drv.ms/1efFYMt

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This project is also very easy and there is no prep time needed. Just follow the presentation and ask the kids about emotions they want to capture. Discuss how they can do that (happiness: bouncing ball, sunshine, flowers, rainbow) and give them watercolor paper and oil pastels (in either warm or cold colors). Either divide a classroom into 2 parts (warm vs cold) or let each of them choose (doing it by tables is going to be easier.) Let the kids draw the thing that they associate with the emotion (keeping it more abstract as the grades get higher, older ones can sketch first). Then give them watercolors to paint over the pictures.

In any case, remind the kids to not mix warm and cold colors. Also, do not use much white or black. Wash brushed before changing colors with the watercolors. And most importantly: have fun!

If you would like to get more projects about Rothko and Color, you can purchase the magazine subscription and receive this issue within 24 hours! This week, it is on sale for $4.99 for 12 issues on Plum District.

You can also ask us about the school subscription with support, online art docent trainings and magazine for ALL kids at your school!