I like to use work by well known artists as a starting point for our projects. It opens the children’s minds to the world of art and can be a great starting point for discussions. Children can gain a lot by thinking about the process that an artist went through to create a picture. As we are looking at landscapes this half term, I decided to show them this picture by David Hockney. I thought that they would be interested in the fact that he created it on an iPad and it is a great example of perspective to draw in the viewers gaze.
We used a guided drawing technique for the first part of this two week project. This allowed us to talk through the various features with the children and plan the picture so that the main elements were in the correct positions. To do this, we pin a large piece of paper up at the front of the class and take the children through the process step by step. They work in pencil at first, but we try to keep rubbing out in these early stages to a minimum so that the pace isn’t lost. Once they were happy with the positioning of the main features they worked on their own to add more trees and other features.
They then worked in black sharpie, being careful to only trace the lines they wanted as the branches criss-crossed over each other. This required some concentration! They then rubbed out the pencil lines.
The second session was used to add colour to their pictures. They did this using Crayola Markers. (I have tried many markers with my art clubs and have found that these offer the best combination of range of shades and durability). Before they began, we looked again at the Hockney picture and discussed the colours. They saw that while some of the colours used were life-like (the browns and the greens of the trees), many were ‘hyper-real’ and that this added to the vibrancy of the picture. They had a great time putting their own personal stamp on their pictures using the markers while still maintaining the Hockney vibe.
They had to work hard to get this done in just two sessions but I think you’ll agree that they have worked out pretty well!
You can see more of this super work on our gallery page – Gallery