Sunday, February 20, 2011

Picasso again - blue period, rose period

Sorry, it's not a Sunday comic (I didn't have one available today) but that guy on the left is pretty funny anyhow, isn't he? Kind of an evil smile...

Anyhow ~ Fourth graders learned about Picasso. After a BRIEF review (due to the time limitations of an impending vacation) of facial proportions etc, they drew a slip out of a bucket. Some were red, some blue. Those students who pulled a blue slip took a blue sheet of construction paper (dark, royal, or sky blue, or turquoise) and those with a red slip took a red-based sheet (I had a burgundy color, a couple of different mid-range reds, and two different pinks available to choose from). Time permitting, students began drawing a face, with a sad expression for blue period, happy for rose. These faces were "made up" - not representative of anyone in particular.

In the next class, the faces were quickly completed and traced with a black marker. After a very BRIEF demo (again, those time limitations) students began painting. Two tables were set up for blue period, two for rose period paintingts. The BLUE period students were given paints in blue, turquoise, black, white, and a silvery purplish color. The ROSE period students were given red, magenta, orange, black, white, and a silvery coppery peach color. They painted without water, sometimes wiping excess color off the brush on newspaper, remembering NOT to stir the paint when they dipped their not-so-clean brush in a new color (that way the color doesn't get "dirty"). They had just the one 40 minute art class to trace the drawing, watch the brief painting demo, and complete their painting. So if some don't look quite finished, it was the result of a student "time-management" problem!

I expected the students to be upset that they couldn't make their own choices whether to do a rose or blue period painting, but they went along with the color selection process without any arguments. Everything went GREAT - the kids mixed colors and painted enthusiastically! One student at each table was given a small bucket with some water, and they collected and cleaned the brushes for their table at the end of art, while their table-mates washed the table and put away the paintings to dry. Of course, one boy decided to spoil the perfection by offering to lick the paint if his buddies would give him money. By the time I got to the table, his tongue had a slash of deep magenta on it. Sigh... WHY?!!!!


  1. I am laughing thinking of a fourth grader eating paint! I have a fourth grader who feels the need to paint her hands at the end of every project (since Kindergarten) I am on to it though and always remind her before we do clean up not to paint her hands. There is no money involved though! I could understand if there was! Good thing we buy non toxic for times like these. I like that they started with colored construction paper it really helps bring together the work.

  2. My high school students like to smell their art supplies, and then ask me if they ate it, would they get sick. Some of these kids are the same ones who complain about our food in the cafeteria! There's just no accounting for taste. Your story made me laugh.

  3. Oh my, this scrappy little devil has no remorse and thrives on starting trouble, but he's also the kid who will make sure all the chairs have been put up, and straighten any messes at the end of art. You never know which extreme you are going to get when he walks in the room! I don't think he actually got any money for painting his tongue anyhow, since he did it before they had agreed to the monetary value of seeing him do this.

    Mrs. B, your comment cracks me up - because I've seen this too.

  4. Wow I love them! We are doing these portraits as well but not with these fantastic colors. I see you went to the dark side by having the students not use water to rinse their brushes! LOL I love the quick brushstrokes and vibrant colors. What a beautiful display for both color periods! Ah yes, we all have that wonderful student who you never know will appear. :)

  5. I love the results!

    Pitty you had to have a paint-eater to spoil things ;-)

  6. Phyl
    I wanted you to know that I put a special link to your blog on my blog this morning, in connection to a blogger award. I know you have gotten them before and might not want to participate fully, but I wanted you to know how much I appreciated your encouragement last September when I really didn't know ANYTHING about blogs!! Hope you enjoy Presidents' Day!! Christie

  7. I used this lesson and blogged about it. Thanks so much for the inspiration!


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