Inspiring children one color at a time

Futuristic City Line Drawing Art Project

By on Jun 29, 2011 | 11 comments

Usborne Activities’s 365 Things to Draw and Paint (Activity Books) is a great resource for art techniques and ideas. I love the look of the Futuristic Cityscape lesson and knew it would translate well for my group of 5th and 6th graders. The idea of a line drawing with shots of color appeals to me as a teacher and to my students. You can put as much or as little color in your drawing as you want.

I found this image on the internet and loved the use line and color. I showed this illustration to my students to give them an alternate perspective from the idea in the Usborne book.

 Art Supplies 

You will need three things for this art project: paper, colored markers and black markers. I used my favorite sulphite drawing paper (construction paper) but you could use whatever you wish…even plain copy paper.

Start by drawing the skyscrapers along the bottom of the paper. These “first” buildings should touch the bottom of the paper. Fill in the details now or leave until later.

Next, draw a highway behind the skyscrapers and then more skyscrapers and buildings behind the raised highway.

The amount of detail is completely up to the individual child. For many kids, I really have to push them by giving them ideas or tips. Offer permission to think outside the box and let their imaginations go wild.

Coloring takes a LONG time, so make sure the kids know that not everything needs to be colored. Black and white can be just as effective.

Fifth and Sixth Grade Line Drawings

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  1. Hi Patty,

    These are great! They remind me of a favorite project of mine that I created to teach a Stuart Davis lesson for my 4th graders. I called it, “CityNoise”, because I had the kids include the sounds of the city(Honk,Screech,Vroom etc.) I love the way your kids used limited color.It really makes their drawings pop!

    Pat Stevens

    June 29, 2011

  2. I really love these these city scapes. Looking forward to trying them with my year 5’s in September. Thanks for posting your work, I have got so much inspiration from this site.

    jan de voil

    July 7, 2011

  3. I like lessons like these because they allow so much creative freedom for students to add in those little details that are unique to them. These are the types of lessons where the room falls silent as they students work so hard. Another cool thing is the fact that you could leave them in black and white and they are still “finished” great when you run short on time and need to move on.

    • You are exactly right, jessica. As a teacher I love the flexibility of this project and how easily it can be pulled out and worked on as students have free time. Have a great summer!


      July 11, 2011

  4. I am currently doing this with my 12 and 8 year old children. They are loving it! My 12 year old is coming up with creative business names for the signs on her buildings!


    July 11, 2011

  5. I love this project. I have almost completed it with a 10 year old that I teach art to via home schooling and am going to incorporate it into my Year 6 program. Love your site, you must spend so much time putting it all together but we thank you!!


    August 1, 2011

  6. I love this idea – will try it with my year 5 trt class tomorrow – thanks Patty – what a fabulous site!

    Joy Hurling

    November 16, 2011

  7. Hi Patty,

    I combined the robot painting lesson with this one and the result was amazing. :)


    December 5, 2012

  8. Hi there
    Thankyou for your idea. I took it and created a cityscape where all my students had to link their work with each person either side of them. Challenging, frustrating and ultimately fantastically rewarding for everyone.


    January 14, 2014

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