Tuesday, April 23, 2013


During the winter months, we studied the artwork of American Folk Artist
She was a self-taught artist who began her painting career in her seventies. GRANDMA MOSES lived to be 101 years old and created many paintings during that time. She enjoyed painting the people and activities most familiar to her and her country lifestyle. Below is one of her many paintings we studied.

We decided to create our own version of a GRANDMA MOSES inspired winter LANDSCAPE.

 We began by painting a winter sky using water color.
When the painting dried, we glued a torn piece of white paper to the bottom for the snow.
This created a HORIZON LINE where the earth and the sky meet.

Next, we created two houses from cut paper. 
One house was big, the other was small.
We learned we could create an illusion of NEAR and FAR by placing the large house close to the bottom, and the small house close to the HORIZON LINE.

There's a difference between tearing and ripping paper. 
Tearing the paper allowed us to control the direction of the tear.
We used these pieces of torn paper to create winter trees.
The rough edges of the torn paper looked just like bumpy tree bark.

 We made some trees large for the FOREGROUND (near).

We created tiny trees for the BACKGROUND (far).

 Last, we created a person for our pictures.

 We had to make sure we dressed them warmly!!

 Cutting out those tiny hats, boots, mittens, jackets and snow pants was a challenge!

We think GRANDMA MOSES would like our winter LANDSCAPES as much as we like hers!

Tuesday, January 22, 2013


For our most recent project, we learned about a French artist named
He was a painter who also created artwork using a technique called
"carving in color".
Matisse perfected this idea of cutting and layering painted papers into interesting compositions in his later years.
We based our project on the painting of his shown below called
The Beasts of the Sea. 

The Beasts of the Sea
Henri Matisse

Like Matisse, we started our project by painting many sheets of white paper in a variety of bright, bold colors.

Next, we each cut smaller SQUARES and RECTANGLES from the painted paper and glued them onto a tall piece of white paper. We OVERLAPPED the shapes carefully leaving a BORDER of white around all sides.

 Then, we cut out some "silly shapes" (shapes from our imagination that have no names) from the painted paper and layered them onto our colorful squares and rectangles.

 We saved our smallest silly shapes for finishing touches on the last (top) layer.

We had to be very careful while gluing so the wet glue didn't "lift" the paint from the paper.

We had to make sure we were layering colors different from those we had already used.

The finished pieces have a beautiful long shape
and are most colorful!
In addition to the sampling of individual paintings shown below, each class also painted a larger than life Matisse style mural which hang from the ceiling near the teacher's mailboxes.

We hope you'll stop by to take a look!