"Every child is an artist.  The problem is how to remain an artist once he grows up."

Pablo Ruiz Picasso (1881-1973)

Close-up of Dragonfly and sunflower inspired from a lesson on the smART Class website.
Here are a handful of examples from my 3rd graders of the 2011-2012 school year.  Click on the images for larger files. 

October 2010

Positive and Negative Space
Our class focused on positive and negative space recently.  We looked at some of M. C. Escher's work to get a better sense of what positive and negative mean in artistic terms. 
If you want to explore more of Escher's art click here.
We also went to the website The Artists Toolkit, and watched a flash video about + & - space. 
Halloween is coming, so we created Jack-O-Lantern cut-outs using some of the elements of design we explored.  There are some interesting additional examples using paper and scissors at Dick Blick, and a lesson plan at the Arts Projects for Kids blog if you want to try this at home in a different way.

September 2010
Vassily Kandinsky & Abstract Art
We explored some of Kandinsky's abstract art as a means of better understanding what abstract really means.  Using the primary colors, fine point black sharpies, rulers, and various circular stencils our class ventured into the realm of abstract art.  Some of our pieces are currently hanging at the Lake County Arts Council Gallery at 325 N. Main St. in Lakeport. 

Charles Demuth - The Figure 5 in Gold

Inspired by Mrs. Brown's 3rd Grade Art website (if you visit scroll down to I saw the number 5 in gold), I decided to pursue an alternate path combining poetry and art, as well as math.  Our room number is 4, and I thought we could read the poem by William Carlos Williams which inspired Charles Demuth to paint his Figure 5 in Gold abstract portrait of William Carlos Williams.  Go here to see Charles Demuth's imagery next to the poem.  We followed this with the creation of a shared poem, albeit a bit lengthier  than Williams', about our school and room 4.  The poem and end result are shown below.
Here are a couple of close-up photos showing a bit more detail.

Interactive Art sites
that bring out the artist/child in you:
  is a website that explores the emotion and symbolism of color.  There are short movies involving the color characters and the ideas to relate to them. 

Mr. Picasso Head - Create your own Picasso portrait using elements of the face that can be resized, rotated, flipped, and assigned colors of your choice.  The image to the left is one I created.  You can email or save the images you create at this website.

National Gallery of Art - Kids Zone - numerous interactive activities using famous imagery from paintings are offered at this site.

This is Sand - Create an image out of layers of digital sand.   No messy sand to clean up afterwards! Click on the gray box for instructions after the page loads.

BuiLD YouR WiLD SeLF -
Add horns, tentacles or a tail, feathers, or fur to your portrait.  This can lead to a fun exercise in descriptive writing.  Take some time to write about how you use each of your parts. Describe the habitat you would need in order to survive.   You can email or save the images you create at this website.

Bomomo - an abstract digital canvas with various stencils for your use.  The cursor changes form by clicking on the choices below the canvas. 
You can email or save the images you create at this website.
Here's an example: