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Thursday, April 21, 2011

2nd Grade Georgia O'Keefe Inspired Flowers












     All I can say is...never underestimate the creative ability of a child!  Our lesson on Georgia O'Keefe's style of painting magnified views of flowers, was a simple and easy concept for 2nd graders, one that I thought would be more challenging.  I thought it would be more challenging because children have a difficult time with drawing and thinking big.  This is a concept that I am constantly reinforcing in my lessons.  
    We not only looked at O'Keefe's paintings of flowers, but also looked at real photographs of flowers (laminated calendar pages) to get our inspiration.  I demonstrated examples of how to draw the simple lines and shape of the flower and stressed that they must take their petals off the edge of the paper, just like Georgia did.  I also showed them what I did not want to see them do, by drawing a small flower in the middle of a large square of paper.  They really understood and it was immediately apparent in their drawings.  
    We used 10" x 10" squares of white posterboard (yes, I sacrificed my posterboard for this- I wanted them to have a sturdy surface on which they could build their paintings on).  We used tempera cakes to paint with.  I told them to choose one or two colors for their flowers, that I did not want to see rainbow flowers- with each petal being a different color.  That there are no flowers that actually grow like that (at least not to my knowledge!).  We talked about either filling their space with all petals, or leaving some room between the petals for green leaves.  Also, I showed them how to add white to their paint to make tints of the color they chose.  
    They totally amazed me, as usual, with their art work!  And inspired me.  I love my job!

10 comments:

  1. Your students did an amazing job.
    I love the colors and lines.
    My favorite flower: The third one.

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  2. Gorgeous work! I'm really enjoying your blog.I have given you a Versatile Blogger Award (see my latest post for details).

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  3. Thanks Mary! I have enjoyed your blog for a long time. It feels good to know that a blogger I admire is admiring what I am doing! Thank you :)

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  4. Oh Julie!
    These flower paintings took my breath away! I have never taught 2nd graders O'Keeffe because in our district she's a 4th grade artist. I am going to break ranks and try this with my 2nd graders as soon as possible thanks to your student's inspiring work. I love the 1st one in red the most!

    :) Pat

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  5. Thank you so much Pat! I think that is interesting that grade levels are assigned certain artists to study in your district. We don't have that. We do have our state and national standards we follow and our benchmarks...but, we have not assigned artists to grade levels. I do love the first one the most, as well! Thanks so much for your positive comments! :)

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  6. Wow! I have just found your blog and it and you are incredible. I was a bit piggy and read every entry in one go. You are an inspiration and your children's artwork is amazing. I especially love your George Rodrigue Dogs. I teach art clubs at lunchtimes and after school at 4 different schools in Sheffield, England. Your blog gets around. Thanks for sharing your ideas. Liz

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  7. Liz, thank you VERY much! I am so thrilled that you read every entry! My first post "A New Beginning" is what I hoped would reach people, but I feared that with all the subsequent posts it would get lost and no one would ever read it. So, thank you for your kind words, they mean so much to me. I am passionate about what I do, my students are so special to me. My hope for this blog is for it to inspire others, so I am glad that it is!!!

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  8. Love this project! I am surprised the little ones could do this so well. Great work!

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  9. Your students' flowers are BEAUTIFUL! They really 'got' the notion of painting the picture in close-up.

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  10. I actually enjoyed reading through this posting.Many thanks.

    Georgia O Keeffe Paintings

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