Turner – Seascape with Red Buoy
Anish Kapoor – Shooting Into The Corner
Each week I have been starting our painting sessions by looking at an image of a painting on the whiteboard, using the image to explore the artists use of imagery, composition, colour and light and dark. This week I began with the story of Turner’s who on Varnishing Day at the Royal Academy in London put a red daub of paint on his seascape painting to complete the painting – using the power of colour and his artistic skill against his rival painter Constable – who declared “Turner has fired a gun”.
In recent years another artist – Anish Kapoor used this story to create his own artwork. He set up a canon loaded with pots of red paints and during the exhibition fired the red paint into the corner of the gallery in the Royal Academy.
We then looked back at our colour wheels and I explained how complimentary colours can be found opposite each other on the colour wheel and how using complimentary colours together can make the colours “zing” off each other. For example:
Green and Red, Blue and Orange, Purple and Yellow.
We then used squares of coloured paper and painted dots, blobs, stripes and patterns of different colours on each one to test how different colours react to each other. The class created a beautiful patchwork of painted colours!
Through Weeks 2 + 3 we further explored painting, mixing colours and tones. We used the three primary colours –
RED + BLUE + YELLOW
We worked gradually mixing two primary colours at each stage to get a range of hues of secondary colours –
RED + BLUE = PURPLE
BLUE + YELLOW = GREEN
RED + YELLOW = ORANGE
Following on from this we took one of the Primary Colours and added white to it gradually to mix a range of tones from Yellow to White, from Red to White and from Blue to White.
The class are working really well together and excited by the new colours and tones they are mixing. They are patient with the process and slowing down their mixing to achieve a range of tones and colours.
Over the next two weeks we began using rollers to help roll out the clay flat. We had a chat about how we might get the clay to stand up – so trying to build it up – like walls. We tried different way and figured out that by rolling it and joining it together we could make it stand like a tower. It was kind of hard to do but with a bit of work the class began building towers and now they needed a roof so the rain would not come in. Then we used different tools to add windows and some decoration.
At the end of Week 3 we talked about the story of the Three Little Pigs and what we remembered of how did the pigs built their houses, what happened, whose house got blown down? Whose house was strong? What made it strong?
This was how we started Week 4 – talking about using clay to build up strong walls, using cement to make the walls even stronger.
We had a really busy morning – cutting out walls, making sure they were thick enough to stand up and then we mixed “cement” or slip by mixing water with clay and using that in between walls to stick them together. Roofs were added, windows, doors, and chimneys. We had some very strong and sturdy houses! So all we needed to do now was make the three little pigs see if we could blow down the houses! They all lived happily ever after!
In the first week we had used our hands as our only tools so this week we began by flattening the clay. Then using sticks to cut, draw into, drag through, poke, carve the clay. Most of the class naturally began considering their clay as pizzas that they were cutting into slices. So we decided to have a tea party! We talked about what we might have and everyone began making different things to rbing along to the tea party – we had cakes, lollipops, donuts, and lots of pizza with different toppings. We even had some clay balloons!
After break we had a chat about who might come to the party and we drew pictures of the things we had made for the party and our friends and family who were coming to the party!
First week back with Mr.Barry’s 3Rd Class! Looking forward to exploring paint and colour over the next couple of weeks. We began the session by looking at a wintry image by Mr.Breughel! Great chat about all the things we could see in the image!
We then got set up for paintings – talked about all the things you need for painting and things to think about. What size brush? What shape brush? Is the paint thick or thin? What paper will I use? And all this before we think about colours. So we kept it simple and experimented with first using one colour on bumpy watercolour paper. Lots of water allowing the paint to run all over the paper and drip off the end. Then we used two colours letting them mix together on the watery paper.
After break we began drawing out a colour wheel using circular sections which we will mix primary colours, and next week work on mixing colours. Here’s some of our watery paintings!
First week with Ms.Kelly’s Junior Infants and we had some guests from Ms.Cooke’s Junior Class also so lots of people in the room and a very busy morning working with clay. I began by asking what an Artist has in their studio where they work? Paints? Pencils? Paper? Canvas? Glitter? How an artist has lots of different materials and things they work with to make their artworks.
So before we started working with clay we did some warm up exercises with our hands and fingers and thumbs. Ready for action! Using all our senses (aside from taste) we discussed what the clay looks like, smells like, feels like and sounds like. At first we did not thin he had any sound or made any noise but then when we started making clay snakes we realised it could make a “SSSSing” sound!
We flattened the clay, we pinched it, we pulled it, we poled it, we made holes in it so we could see through it. Then rolling it to make a ball, the lump of clay was a bit big so we made it into smaller bit and lots of balls with it. And we then started stacking them on top of each other….until they toppled over. Now it was time to roll it out making different snakes – long and short, chubby and skinny. And joined them together making big long snakes all together…..Wow super snakes! Some children made Rapunzel snowmen, Applejack My Little Ponies, stables, cookies and birds! Great work Junior Infants!
After break we drew some of the things we had made.
We have had two very busy weeks with 5th and 6th Class! Developing on from 2D into 3D. Last week we used art straws and lines in space – creating shapes to make forms when added together. This work totally took off with 3D forms exploding and expanding as two and threes started working together and building on each others forms! A few students began making some mobile forms that became wearable and so related to human scale. Some sculptures that could be worn on the head and some that two people could fit into.
So based on how well the group were working together and very hands on developing of ideas and working with 3D forms in space we decided to work on wearable art this week. What a hectic session! I had brought in a range of construction materials and reflected on last week that how when forms are up-scaled and mobile that you need to look at the structure and construction method.
Great ideas and really inventive use of materials! Everyone worked well together and worked out their structure and function before getting into decoration. So here’s some shots from the catwalk! And Mr.Barry volunteered to model some of our artworks for some of our creators and designers!