What do you do on a cold, rainy day? Make art!

It was a cold and rainy day today. The kids were sick of reading, homework, board games, each other, even their electronics… so I had to think of something fast.IMG_3076

I was working on lesson plans and was thinking that I hadn’t used watercolors in a while. I was trying to think of how I could make it different for them so I decided to add different materials to the watercolors to create a texture within the paintings. My 10 year old was especially reluctant because he insisted that he couldn’t paint. I decided upon salt and a metal stick to scratch into the paper. I did a quick demonstration for my 3 children ages 17, 14 and 10. I refreshed my memory by checking out a few sites like this one, then I did my demonstration. I demonstrated wet on wet, flat washes, splattering textures, lifting dry watercolor, salt texture and sgrafitto.

My boys love lizards and amphibians so I suggested that they select a favorite animals and represent them into a watercolor. I gave them time to think about it and they searched some color images on the internet. My middle son decided to bring his turtle out of the tank to draw from and my youngest chose a lizard. My daughter loves Asian art and decided on a koi fish.


He didn't want to re-draw the lizard so I showed him how he could trace it onto the good paper by putting graphite all over the back.

I assisted my 5th grader further by showing him how to grid out the animal and pointed out how the shapes of the body were really rectangles and ovals. He worked it out with minimal help- They were at it for a good 2 hours!!! and the biggest plus, my youngest now thinks that he is  pretty good with a brush- Yay!!

The finished work along with sketches and photographs.

The finished work along with their sketches and images.

See the texture the salt created?
See the texture the salt created?