Posted by: MiniMonets | November 30, 2017

Fauvist Self Portraits

So… Apparently juggling Mini Monets and a family has caused 6 months to go by since my last post!!

Greetings Parents,

It has been a great 2 weeks working on our self-portraits. This is one of my favorite projects and my artists did an amazing job. We start off reading the book Me I Am by Jack Prelutsky. The book introduces 3 different kids and shows how they are the only ones like them. This is the individuality that I encourage in my artists for each of their creations, but especially for the self-portrait. We start by drawing a large shape for our head. I then have the artists add two guidelines, one vertical line and one horizontal line that divide the head into 4 pieces. The guidelines are there to show where are our eyes, nose, mouth, and ears are situated. This project is a great one for talking about the 5 senses. Before we drew each part of the face, I asked them “What do you see with? What do you smell or taste with?” We talked about how different everyone looks and how each portrait should show that individuality. After we drew our faces, we added bodies if there was space. The final step was to trace with a sharpie marker.

For the second class, I introduced the students to two portraits by Henri Matisse. Matisse was a painter whose style continually changed throughout his life.  Before we started painting, I showed the painting Woman with a Hat (1905). It is a painting of his wife where he used bold, bright colors to express emotions instead of painting true to life colors. During this period, Matisse was part of an art group known as The Fauves, which means Wild Beasts in French. Art critics thought their use of color and breaking with tradition looked more like an animal had painted it than a man. I encouraged the students to paint with their favorite colors. I gave them tempera cakes with red, orange, yellow, blue, purple, green, teal, white, and black. While they were working I showed two additional paintings by Matisse. First I showed the painting Harmony in Red/The Red Room (1908) where he used red throughout. These warm colors tend to create vibrant works of art. I then showed the painting Blue Window.  It depicts a view from a window by using different shades and tints of blue. These cool colors create a soothing effect in this painting. I encouraged them to completely paint the whole piece of paper before being finished.

The objective of this project was to use visual arts to illustrate how people express themselves differently.

The next artist we will learn about is Piet Mondrian and drawing grids as a work of art.

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