Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Glue and Pastel Fish

My students love to play with messy materials, and pastels are definitely messy. One way that I keep the pastel situation under control is through the use of glue. I start out by reading a book to my students, such as Rainbow Fish and then give each student a piece of black paper. The students then draw their fish or other undersea creature using pencil. Once the drawing is finished, the students trace over the pencil lines with glue, and then the glue is left to dry. Once the glue is dry, the students color in the fish with pastels, and then I spray hairspray or fixative on the artwork to seal the pastel. When dry, the glue acts like a wall or barrier, which helps keep the pastels from smearing everywhere. I have done this lesson with second and third graders.

Interesting artist... TR Mack

While working on a lesson plan for third grade, which encompasses the big idea of change, I settled on the specific idea of changing seasons. I then started to look for contemporary artists that used this theme in their artwork. I finally found an artist on the Etsy site named TR Mack. I have not been able to find a lot of information on the artist himself, but the artwork he creates is amazing, and just what I was looking for. The specific web address for his Etsy shop is

When I showed the images to my students, they were soooooo excited! The plan is to create a "Forest of Seasons", with each student creating 4 trees, each being 4x6. The students will have to create a tree for each season, utilizing both design and color to portray a specific season. The students will create each tree using a different medium, which include collage, mixed media, acrylic and watercolors. When we get this project done, I will post some pics.