Welcome to my blog about my experiences working in early childhood. I have called it Nurturing Forests because I believe that raising children is not a isolated activity but takes a whole community.

As early childhood professionals, we are actively involved in this process but we also need to work closely with the children, parents, community as a whole and other allied professionals.

I hope you enjoy my site. I also have a facebook site of the same name where I provide links to useful sites for teachers, parents and others interested in the early childhood: www.facebook.com/nurturingforests

Thursday, February 17, 2011

White on Black: Art Inspiration

Just a quick post today as I feel like I have been a little remiss...

I thought I would tell you about the wonderful art class I had yesterday.

The focus of the lesson was line. So our teacher got us to use black paper and white gouache (you could substitute this with - acrylic, white chalk, oil pastels, basically anything along those lines - though gouache is a wonderful medium so would love to try it with the children soon).

As inspiration, she provided us with a number of black and white prints (for some she used pictures that were not actually black and white but came out that way when photocopied). You are looking for pictures with a black background and that you have to explore the concept of negative space - i.e. you are applying the light not the dark which you typically do.

Note that she provided us with inspiration/art works to learn the skill from - this is something that i believe really strongly in  - A child (or adult) cannot learn art skills out of thin air they have to see examples of the work you are aim for and you have to help them see and learn the skills that are necessary to master the art.

Initially, I thought this exercise would be reasonably easy but when you settle into the task you quickly begin to realise the thought that the artist has put into the composition and line in the drawing. One piece in particular that I spent most of the class working out was fitted together like a beautiful jigsaw puzzle of gymnasts... I will try and find a link to for you (just had a quick look then and got nowhere - he is an Australian artist who did a whole series of gymnast paintings before moving on to dance scenes - if you know it let me know).

I highly recommend it as a something to try out yourself and with your children.

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