Van Gogh Inspired ¾ View Portraits

Paint a portrait like Van Gogh. Portraits that focus on a ¾ view instead of the traditional straight-on portrait.

By the time I was in seventh grade, I abandoned the frontal portrait view in favor of a ¾ view. I loved how drawing portraits from a ¾ view perspective looked like the school photos we all had. It does take a bit of practice but I believe it might be easier than drawing a frontal view. Third graders are really just beginning to get comfortable with a standard format … Read More →

Activity Pack: Color Theory and Literature

The Artist Who Painted a Blue Horse is my first literature pick for My DSS Activity Packs.

In my attempt to respond to my most frequently requested materials, I am thrilled to announce the arrival of my newest genre: Art Activity Packs! There are quite a few of you out there who want so desperately to read a book to your students (or children) and offer a simple follow-up art activity. Notice how I said activity? In my mind, there is a distinction between an art lesson … Read More →

Homophone and Homonym Art Activity

Homophone and Homonym Art Activity

Based on the book “Cat Tales” by Michel Hale, children explore the color wheel by creating secondary colors from primary colors. Using shapes to create the Cats from the book, children become aware of movement, expression and composition. This 8-page lesson plan includes full color photo tutorials, student agllery, a handout to show how easy it is for first graders to make a shape cat and tips for encouraging the … Read More →

Santa Barbara Mission Paintings

Santa-Barbara-Mission-Art-Lesson

The Santa Barbara Mission is perched on top of a gentle hill over looking the city and the distant ocean. An extensive rose garden offers the visitor a place to picnic, play and enjoy the Spanish architecture of the mission. This is my city. The weather is glorious and I imagine the Spanish Franciscans who founded the mission in 1786 thought so, too. Three adobe churches were constructed on the … Read More →

Mosaic Hearts Art Lesson

Mosaic-Hearts-art-project-for-kids

Sometimes an art project is inspired by the strangest of things. In this case, a sparkly roll of craft tape! I just knew I had to incorporate the glitter tape into an art lesson and of course, it being winter time and close to Valentine’s Day, well, let’s just say it didn’t take long to figure out a plan. This lesson plan ended up being less about the glitter tape … Read More →

Fun with Portraits II Guidebook

Fun-with-Portraits-Guidebook-LESSON

This is my biggest PDF lesson plan booklet to date and is the result of over 5 years of portrait making. I’ve broken down the secrets of teaching a portrait lesson into THREE TECHNIQUES. Each technique is outlined in the guidebook and when combined with various mediums, makes portrait making easy and doable. Simply pick the technique that is best suited to your grade level, choose your favorite medium and … Read More →

Fun with Painted Paper & Technique Videos

Fun-with-Painted-Paper

  Creating painted paper is an absolute joy for children. There is absolutely no wrong way to do it and the kids know it. I’ve gotten into the practice of starting my kinder and 1st grade art rotations with a painted paper project. You may have to wash a few extra brushes, but in the end, the children are smiling and you’ll have enough painted paper pieces to last the … Read More →