Program: Artsy Fartsy

Last month I started a new series for my (small) school age crowd: art club! Every month, I theme the program on a different artist, style of art, or illustrator. We talk about their methods, look at lots of pictures, and then recreate their art. This month we did pointillism!

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Hung up on the whiteboard are paintings by different artists in the style of pointillism and leaning against it are some art books, one about Georges Seurat. Two of my attendees recognized A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte right away! I’ve been to the Art Institute many times, so we talked about how big it actually is for a while and how long it would take to make something like that.

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Our set up is much simpler than Georges Seurat’s would have been. For this project, you don’t need much! We used card-stock, tempera paints (for the fast dry time, but you could really use anything), pencils with erasers, and small paintbrushes (for the Vincent Van Gogh style). Additional tools included water and paper towels for cleaning our utensils, pencils for sketching, and plates for mixing paint colors (honestly, we could have a whole program with just mixing paint!).



An important thing to note is that pointillism takes a long time and a LOT of patience. You need to reapply paint to your eraser after every four or five dots. I brought scissors so we could cut the paper smaller, which I very much recommend. The last thing we want is for kids to leave frustrated!

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Above is the sample I did myself to experiment with this craft, since I’d never done it before. I elected not to take this one with me as an example because it took about an hour and a half (seriously) and therefore wasn’t very representative of what they’d be able to do in forty-five minutes. Still! You can see what a cool effect the eraser has and you’ll likely be really impressed with what your kids are able to come up with on their own.

Upcoming programs include Eric Carle, mask-making, and Jackson Pollack!


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