Sixth Graders looked at artist M.C. Escher. This was a GREAT transition from Op Art because his drawings and prints will definitely play tricks on you! The students loved his drawings and one even said "This reminds me of the movie the LABYRINTH!" I immediately got all warm and happy inside! Not only is this my favorite movie of all time, but she was able to spot this artist in something in her life! (I'm always telling my kids that ART is EVERYWHERE!!!)
Anyway, We looked at some of his work and then started working on our own. Students received a three inch square piece of an index card. They drew a line on the top side of the square and cut it. They took that piece and taped it to the bottom of the square. They did this again on the side. It looked something like this:
After students had their new shape, or motif, made out of their card, they traced it a few times into their sketchbook to make sure everything matched up. They then had to create something out of their motif! Like finding images in clouds, it was so fun to see what these kids saw. After their design was chosen, they started on their big, final piece. Students traced their motif onto a 9x18 piece of paper.
Students were then able to choose any color from the color wheel to paint their picture. Only one color, though! They learned how to make different tints and shades with their color choice, and was able to practice a bit in their sketchbook before moving on.
This was a great project for all students. There was really no way to mess up. You could cut your motif any which way you wanted, and as long as you taped it right, they would always match up. For some, I could see relaxation washing over them because once they got that first step right, everything was smooth sailing after that. For students that find it hard to draw, this was something that was instantly successful. I really loved watching my students see their piece coming together.
Students also created an artist page in their sketchbook. I loved their drawings of Escher, himself. One student even numbered how big she thought his head was compared to hers. I thought that was so funny! They did a wonderful job. This helps them know a little bit more about the artist that we are learning about, but also helps their drawing/people drawing skills.