This unit teaches 4th-5th grade students how to create a strong flower composition and then add color using chalk or oil pastels. Students also learn about creating tints and shades within these outstanding and colorful creations.
6 sessions; 45 minutes per session
• Students will be able to describe how different media, techniques, and processes grab the attention of a viewer of an artwork
• Students will be able to demonstrate a knowledge of the connections among the content of visual arts and science (name the parts of the flower)
• Students will use materials safely and responsibly
• Students will assess the merits of their work and the works of others
• Students will use principles and elements of design to create a strong flower composition
• Students will learn show tints and shades within an artwork
• Large white or colored paper (11x14, 80lb.)
• Chalk/Oil Pastels
• Georgia O’Keeffe flower artworks
• Drying Rack
• Sponges for tables
• Discuss composition- the way the artist draws. I always start with “What do you see?”
• Where does your eye go first? (center of the pink flower)
• Where does it go next? (down to the yellow flower, then around, creating MOVEMENT)
• Are the flowers centered (No)
• Which flower is bigger? (Top) Which is on top (The bottom flower overlaps the top) WHY? (To create interest, to create movement)
• Describe the petals going off the page. Point out colors, tints, shades, and the way your eye keeps circling. These are elements of a strong composition.
Student will use colored paper (11x14) to draw their own flower compositions. To create a strong composition, students must have:
1. No more than 2-3 LARGE flowers
3. Going off the page on at least three sides
4. Simple leaves or vines in the background
5. Every area of the page must be separated by a finger’s width, or the glue will smudge
Day 2 (45 minute period)
Re-visit Georgia O’Keeffe’s flower composition. Review the qualities of a strong composition and the requirements for students’ drawings.
Demonstrate: Students should check their drawings first with the students at their table, and then once with me, before proceeding to the glue. I will check to make sure their glue will not smudge and that they are on track.
Show students how to outline their artworks with white glue. This will dry clear, showing an outline in the color of their paper. Start on one side (left side, if right handed) and move across, not skipping lines. Demonstrate what happens if lines are too close together (glue puddles) or if they lift their artworks up (drips). Have students outline their artworks with glue and then place securely on a drying rack.
Day 3 (45 minute period)
Demonstrate: If the glue is dry, students can begin to add color with pastels or oil pastels. Students need to start with one solid color for each area. Example: Pink petals. Yellow inside. Green stem. They need to go carefully and if using oil pastels, avoiding covering the glue. All the petals of one flower need to all be the same color.
Day 4 (45 minute period)
Student may choose a background color if they have completed coloring the flowers and leaves. A background color should be a color not already used, or one that was used very minimally within the artwork. Think about what is going to make the artwork pop out? Students should color their backgrounds one solid color, as to not distract from their flowers.
Day 5 (45 minute period)
Go back to the flower composition. Have students point out tints (areas of light) and shades (areas of darkness) in the artwork. Talk about the use of color and how the bright colors stand out.
Demonstrate adding tints to a flower. This will be challenging for students, and it is important to remind them that even if they do not get the tint in the exact right spot, it will still look beautiful! I usually check students’ work after they have done tints on one flower. I tell students to create their light source at the top right of their artworks. Therefore, the top right of each petal has a tint added. The top right of each stem, leaf, etc. gets a tint. The tint color can change, as long as the color is lighter than what it is on top of. The students may need to review colors before they can determine this.
Day 6 (45 minute period)
Demonstrate adding shades to flowers and stems. Shades should be added to the bottom left of each part of the flower. This does not need to be black every time; simply a darker color will make a nice finish.
Day 7 (45 minute period)
Finish artworks. Fill in areas and make sure there is good craftsmanship. Students should fill out a self-assessment.