connecting curriculum and creativity through art

Sunday, February 7, 2016

Vibrant Mixed Media Landscapes and German Expressionism

Hey folks! Painting anything interesting lately? What? You are not sure what to create? Well, lets get started with a landscape that really brings in the awesome vibrant colors of the color wheel.

My 5th graders studied the fabulous German artist Karl Schmidt-Rottluff. What a fascinating yet frustrating life he and his friends had in Germany. They started Die Brucke, a group who were the founding fathers of the movement later known as German Expressionism.

While the artists of the group painted scenes of urban life, Schimidt -Rottluff is mainly known for his rural landscapes. His paintings became more angular, using geometric forms.

Students first drew out their landscape designs and then painted in the shapes. Lots of discussion about warm and cool colors and tints were also highlights of this project.

After the paintings were dry, students outlined their shapes and Wowza! Look at those vibrant colors!
Full lesson available at the 

German Expressionist Landscapes will introduce students to the colorful world of landscape painting. Children will learn about the artist Karl Schmidt-Rottluff and create a beautiful vibrant mixed media landscape with tempera paints and chalk pastels. Plus, gain an understanding of basic color concepts. Analogous, complementary, warm and cool colors are all addressed. This lesson is great for ages 9-12. 
Here is a preview of what is included in the lesson.

The 12 page digital pdf includes:
Step by step full-color photo tutorials for the lesson.
Historical background information about Karl Schmidt-Rottluff   
Full color images of his paintings
Learning objectives
Supplies needed for the project
Helpful tips
Reproducible handouts of landscapes
Student gallery

Now what are you waiting for? Go grab some paints and
 get started creating!

Laura :)

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Let's give some love to Jim Dine!

Jim Dine is known for bold colorful paintings and fun designs. My students created 3 different art lessons which focused on hearts with bold patterns and delightful colors. 
One project that we created was a textured heart. 

First, students created a heart with pencil, then filled them in with oil pastels and overlapping lines. After the heart was filled in students added more lines and textures in the background. 

To add additional color, students chose one liquid watercolor to paint over the background textures.
Let dry.

This created an oil pastel resist. 
To complete the project students glued the paper onto bright construction paper and added a border of painted paper strips around the edge of the construction paper. Add some fun patterns with oil pastels for added interest.

Here are two
additional heart mixed media art projects using tempera paint and oil pastels.
Included in this PDF is historical information on Dine, easy to follow project steps, and bright visuals for inspiration. Also, you will find beautiful galleries containing examples of students’ artwork.

This 9 page-PDF features an easy to follow art lesson, complete with full color photos. These lessons are great for ages 7-11 but any age student can create beautiful art projects using these directions. These lessons are designed so that every child will be a successful artist.

The Digital PDF includes:
Step by Step full-color photo tutorial for each lesson
Artist Background info on Jim Dine
Supplies needed for projects
Student Galleries
Helpful tips

Lessons available at the shop

Thanks for stopping by and for letting Painted Paper be your top destination for art lessons.  

Keep on creating!
Laura :)

Saturday, January 30, 2016

Painted Papers 101

Many people have asked how I make painted papers. The whole process of painting papers is the students favorite thing to create in the artroom. They love to paint. 
With these helpful suggestions you will too!

Construction Paper
Step 1: Grab various paper. I used 12" x 18" drawing paper and 
12" x 18" Tru-Ray Construction paper.  
Tru-Ray is really strong and does not tear 
when loads of paint is applied.

Step 2: I use So Big brushes by Crayola. They are really tough brushes for little hands. I also use some other brushes as well but Crayola handles the wear and tear of painting year after year. I suggest to the students to “hop” around their paper. 
No blending. We want to see the paint and brush strokes.

Sometimes we use texture brushes along with cardboard tubes, plastic lids and rings. Any item you can paint with or leave a print will work! I ordered these from Lakeshore. 
(A pre-primary/primary school catalog.)


Step 3: Grab the paints. I use Prang, Dick Blick and Crayola. I have found the premium paint is brighter and opaque. 
Washable paint is not as vivid.

Don’t forget your placemats to keep your tables clean.
 I use 18" x 24" manilla tagboard as placemats. They are durable and last a whole semester!

When I paint all day I start with yellow, oranges and white. 
When you add white to the paint it creates a tint (a lighter color).

 Then I go to the next color grouping : Yellow, Green and White
 Blues, Purples and again add white for some tints.

Sometimes we just need to use up paints so we mix it up!

 Spray bottles filled with watered down paint or watercolors create beautiful effects on the previous painted paper.

When you are painting paper with 5 classes a day you need a large drying rack. This has been a life saver. I can get four 12" x 18" sheets on one shelf. Just imagine the rainbow of colors of painted paper at the end of the day!
If you are painting with a few children you can lay the sheets on a table or on the floor. Use a plastic table cloth as a drop cloth.

I store the sheets in stacks of rainbows so it is easy 
to grab for future projects.

Enjoy the processing of mixing beautiful colors on paper-

Laura :)

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Queen of Hearts Portraits

Hey guys! Did you know the Art room is a great place to incorporate math and literacy?
Here are 2 projects that my students created that connect Art and literacy and are
 inspired by the nursery rhyme 
The Queen of Hearts.

The first project is 
The Queen and King of Heart Portraits

These directed drawing portraits were so fun and simple to create. There were a ton of giggles and grins from students. :) Boys loved creating the Kings and especially loved adding the mustaches to their Kings!

Symmetrical Pattern Hearts
is the second project.

My second graders created these adorable symmetrical hearts. Before creating we read the poem Queen of Hearts.

The Queen of Hearts she made some tarts all on a summer’s day;
  The Knave of Hearts he stole the tarts and took them clean away.
The King of Hearts called for the tarts and scolded the Knave full sore
The Knave of Hearts brought back the tarts and vowed he'd steal no more.

Art Activity:
1. Students folded a 6" x 6" paper in half then drew half a heart. Some students had a hard time with the shape so I performed open heart surgery on them! :)

2. Students then glued down the heart in the center of a 12" x 12" piece of construction paper and started painting with tempera paint using simple designs on top and around the heart.

How fun are stripes and polka dots! 
Imagine any type of pattern. 
Just make sure they paint on both sides of their paper for a symmetrical look.

Let projects dry.

Students used oil pastels and drew more designs around the heart. The sensory experience of using oil pastels and feeling the pastel glide across the paper is something a student never forgets!

 Put your hearts together and show some 
L O V E !!!!!

Full lesson with handouts and detailed directions is available at the shop

The Digital PDF includes:
Step by Step full-color photo directed lessons
Background information about Queen of Hearts
Supplies needed for projects
Reproducible Queen of Hearts directed drawing handout
Reproducible King of Hearts directed drawing handout
King and Queen Handouts for inspiration 
Student galleries
Helpful tips

Keep on creating!

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Art of Education Blogger Contest

What an honor sharing the podium with these awesome art teachers!
I am beyond blessed for having 
such great followers and friends! 

Thanks so much for the love and votes.
I came in 3rd place in the Art of Education’s Blogger of the Year 2015! 

Thanks to the Art of Education for sharing relevant art education topics and for being an outstanding resource for art educators!

I am over the moon on the feedback I have received and the additional followers that are following me on Instagram!
If you are not following then hop on over to 
I post photos throughout the day of projects that my students are creating; so if you need a little pick me up or just want to look at adorable, colorful kids artwork then go sign up. 
Also, go check out these fabulous winners that I feel so honored to call my friends. 

Thanks again! 

Remember to keep on creating! 

Laura :)

Thursday, January 21, 2016

AOE - Blog of the Year Contest

 I am amazed that I have been nominated for 
The Art of Education's 

 Art Ed Blog Of TheYear-
(elementary category) 

I am honored that I have been selected to receive such fantastic love!

Stop what you are doing and go check out this 
awesome site for Art Educators-

it is a powerhouse of information for anyone who loves art or teaches art.

By the way! 
You can also vote for your favorite art blogs. There are different categories so make sure you check out all these awesome, inspiring art blogs!

and as always,

Keep on creating!
Laura :)

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Picasso: Rose Period Hearts and Flowers

Pablo Picasso is known for many different paintings and fun sculptures, but did you know of his Rose Period artworks?  

Picasso’s Blue Period lasted for 4 years. It was a sad time in his life and he primarily used blue paint in his works.
After that sad time Pablo fell in love and splashed many of his canvases with lovely colors such as pinks, reds, corals and purples. This became known as his Rose Period which focused on bold shapes and colorful patterns. In these two art lessons my students created delightful flowers and hearts inspired by Picasso’s Rose Period. 

First Project:
Picasso Roses
 Students created a big flower on 18" x 18" sheets of tagboard with tempera paint. It took 50 minutes to complete one large flower. We let them dry and then cut them out

Second Project:
Picasso Hearts
 Students used a piece of 18" x 18" tagboard, drew a heart,  painted it with tempera paint then when dry cut it out. It took 50 minutes to complete one large heart. 

One student created an abstract heart inspired 
by Picasso’s cubism!

These were created by students in my art club. 
I never have to explain the directions. 
I just tell them to create fun designs with paint.
This is why I love to teach!

Want more details of the full lesson? It’s available at
Painted Paper Shop

This 14 page-PDF features an easy to follow art lesson, complete with full color photos. Also, you will find beautiful galleries containing examples of students’ artwork and reproducible Art exit slips for project reflection.

 These lessons are great for ages 7-11 but any age student can create beautiful art using these directions. These lessons are designed so that every child will be a successful artist.

The Digital PDF includes:
Step by Step full-color photo tutorial for each lesson
Artist Background info on Picasso
Subject Background information
Picasso Timeline
Supplies needed for each project
Inspirational Picasso quotes
Student Galleries
Reproducible Exit Slips for project reflection
Helpful tips

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Thanks for stopping by and for letting Painted Paper be your top destination for art lessons.  

Keep on Creating!

Laura :)