Thursday, October 13, 2005


Last week my third graders came in to the art room and found four large
Shorefield reproductions hanging off the clothesline. I have a sort of
collection of these that I inherited from another teacher. I choose them
randomly, four each week for three or four weeks--one still life, one portrait,
landscape and one non objective. I tell the class that were I rich I would
buy them each a ticket and we would go to Paris and visit the Orly, or to London

and visit the National Gallery. But since I am not rich, I am happy to share
posters that the museums make so people can see what the paintings are about.
I speak about each reproduction for a minute or two...and clip a tag
identifying each (landscape, etc) and mentioning a little sound bite about the
artist. This time I used:
Van Gogh: Cypress Trees
Van Gogh: Sunflowers #2
Gaughin: Woman with a Mango
Kandinski: Improvisation 31
Afterward I invite six students who are willing to work at least three
classes on one painting to join me while others go on to centers. My little
painting group gets to choose a piece of 2' x 3' thick white paper. I
sketching with dirty water...instead of using a pencil. Then they get to work.

In three classes here is a list of what was begun:
1. An abstract design with lots of jaggedy lines
2. A deer
3. A space man
4. A self portrail
5. A very agitated abstract
6. A dog
7. A dark black design
8. Some apple trees
9. An action painting, lots of spots
10. An outer space painting
11. A self portrait, riding a horse English style
12. A swirling abstract
13. A huge self portrait head
14. A dog surrounded by stars
15. A horse painted from one of our horse models
16. A light house on a rocky coast
17. A still life with a vase a fancy wallpaper. Artist quote: "I have so many
wall paper designs in my head I don't know where to start!" (I passed her my
Matisse book....)
So I am really loving watching these paintings come about. Look for some
photos soon. Next class one of the big paintings hanging on the clothesline will

be one of the student abstracts and we will also discuss "original" and

The Five Minute Museum 

The Five Minute Museum
Originally uploaded by twoducks.

This is the Five Minute Museum, week two: Works by Van Gogh, Chasin, Gaughin

and a third grade abstract expressionist.  We used his work to discuss the

difference between an original and a reproduction.  He was pleased to see his

work in the Museum.

The Five Minute Museum 

The Five Minute Museum
Originally uploaded by twoducks.

This painter is using a horse model as a reference. She likes to work very slowly.

Beginning a Painting 

Beginning a Painting
Originally uploaded by twoducks.

This seascape has a light house. The artist has plans to make the sky very


Painting Big in the Third Grade 

Painting Big in the Third Grade
Originally uploaded by twoducks.

Colors flow around the paper as this abstract artist works.

Still Life Painting 

Still Life Painting
Originally uploaded by twoducks.

As she painted the artist said: "I have so many kinds of wall paper in my

head I don't know which one to use."

Painting Big 

Painting Big
Originally uploaded by twoducks.

A dog and stars. Work in progress.

Painting big in grade three 

Painting big in grade three
Originally uploaded by twoducks.

This student uses a mirror for her self portrait.

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