Thursday, December 13, 2012

How to draw or paint Santa


Each year I do painting workshops for children where I teach them how to paint a portrait of Santa Claus. I do this in groups of 6-8 and it takes about two hours. Here's how I teach kids how to draw Santa Claus. I start out breaking him down into basic shapes. Once they get the basic design down, I show them a variety of painted Santa portraits and how the shapes are incorporated. Then they can change it up and make it their own.


Basic Shapes


Santa Variations using shapes


Break down


Some Santa portraits...I love how they each turn out so unique!


These were painted by 2-5th graders.


Painted in acrylic on a 16 x 20 stretched canvas.


To see more, follow me on Facebook under "Sleepyhead Designs Studio".

"For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace." Isaiah 9:6
Have a Blessed Christmas!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Native American Animal Hide Art Project


This week I was asked to help my daughter's second grade class with a Thanksgiving art project (one of my favorite things to do :))

 I can still remember one of my favorite art projects from my elementary school years.  We were learning about the Pioneer days, and we made Indian art on faux animal hides. It must have made an impact since I still remember it some 30+ years later.  My daughter's class just finished up a unit on the Wild West, and Thanksgiving is right around the corner, so I did some research and came up with a lesson for American Indian animal hide art. I found a similar lesson already online at Dick Blick, but here's how we did ours.


I precut 20 grocery bags-the front side of the bag or side without the crease. First, we talked about the different types of Native American Art like cave and rock carvings, basketry, pottery, sand art and clothing. There are tons of websites out there on these art forms and the history of Native American art.

We also learned how Native American's used symbols to represent different things in their drawings. I drew a variety of Native American symbols on the white board, and talked about what some of them represented. Then we learned that instead of paper or canvas,  Indians used tanned animal hides for their art. The hides were also used for maps, prayers and to record stories. I showed a sample of an animal hide shape, reminding them that it didn't have to be perfect. Next, I instructed the kids to draw out their animal hide shape on the backside of the paper (the side with the "Kroger" logo), and then either cut or tear out the shape.


Next was the fun part! I showed the kids how to wad up the paper into a ball, and then flatten back out again, reminding them to use care and not rip the paper. I told them to do this five times (or more) and then they would start to see that the paper would get soft and wrinkled. Then I showed them how to fold it in half and rub the sides together to give the paper a furry feel. They went crazy doing this!


Before we started our designs, we talked about how Native American's used charcoal and minerals to "paint" on their hides, and the colors were usually limited to sienna, ochre, turquoise, black and white. I encouraged the students to use as much color as they wanted, and also to create their own symbols. 

Now time to draw the design with a black marker.


We used Crayola oil pastels to fill in the designs.


Last we mounted the finished "hide" on a piece of black construction paper.


I taught this to 20 second graders, and we completed it right under one hour. Students were engaged the entire time and loved making their designs. This was also a project that the boys seemed to enjoy as much as the girls.

Do you remember your favorite art project as a kid? I would love to hear what you remember!

Happy Thanksgiving Yall!





Saturday, November 17, 2012

New Christmas Paintings


I have a few new Christmas pieces that will all be at Scallions in the Heights next week, so stop by and check them out. These are all acrylic and mixed media.


11 x 14 Acrylic at Scallions









Sunday, November 11, 2012

Painting and Drawing Pumpkins


Here's a fun fall project where you can introduce numerous concepts like; lines, shading, and warm/cool colors. First, I teach students how I draw a pumpkin. I always teach that before you paint to practice your drawing and plan your painting. And I love talking about painting fruits, and stress that there's not such thing as a "perfect" pumpkin. They can be fat, tall, bumpy, lop-sided, etc. Students painted on a 12 x 12 stretched canvas with acrylic paints.







We added a little green puff paint for the vines and tricked out our edges with stripes. Students were kindergarten through 2nd grade (one fourth grader), and completed their paintings in a 2-hour workshop.





Monday, October 29, 2012

Fall Colors


I just love, love, love fall! The colors, the crisp temperatures, the smells....it makes me want to paint! 


I've taught several classes each fall on painting fall foliage. It's a great way to introduce landscapes, foreground, middle ground, background and horizon line. 


I also taught about the lighting and shadows.


These were done in acrylic paint on a 16 x 20 canvas.


For all the classes I planned to set up them outside to paint, but it rained. We had to look out the window and use our imaginations!


Our first step, was to put a wash on our canvas and establish our horizon line. We used a watered down gold acrylic to put a wash over our whole canvas and let it dry. Next with the same gold paint we place our horizon line.


Step two was to draw in (with watered down burnt sienna paint) our foreground trees. I suggested they start with three. 


Next, with the same paint, we sketched in the middle ground trees, making them thinner in width. I suggested they put in two to three mid ground trees.


Then we added the background trees, which were the smallest and sat either directly on the horizon line or right below it. Then we painted our sky with blues and whites.


Next we painted our tree trunks. Using the darkest brown for the front trees and shades lighter for the mid and back ones. We painted our shadows, making sure they were parallel. 


We painted the ground a dingy green and then, as we place our leaves, we also put leave colors over the green. 


Added some highlights and shadows to the tree trunks and put in some branches.


Happy Fall!

Sunday, October 7, 2012

October Art Celebration



Since my Birthday is in October, I decided I wanted to celebrate by donating 40% of all my October Art Sales Profits to my two favorite non-profits, Go Near Ministry and RAP Ministries.  

James 1:27 says that "religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress..."  Last summer, as I read this blog post about the Widows Project from Go Near Ministry to my girls, I wept.  I read it again to my husband, and wept. I weep now as I write. This is God's heart. These women and their babies. I'm sure I cry partially out of guilt; guilt that I cannot go; and guilt that we spend on one family meal what could provide for their family for one month. But I also weep out awe of God's provision for those who step out in faith. From the money and materials, down to the people, he orchestrates such a perfect plan for those who trust Him.  I am so blessed to know people that are brave enough to answer God's call to help widows in distress by serving in the slums of Kenya. It is amazing to read about what God is doing there, and I want to be a part in some small way.


I discovered Kidz RAP four years ago when I home schooled my girls. Since we had more time, one of my goals was to teach them about having a servant's heart, by actually serving. But once I started looking for places for three children under the age of 10 to serve, I came up empty handed. Then someone told me about Kidz "Reaching All People". This is a wonderful ministry that provides everything needed to get families serving those in need. Over the years, we have served in so many meaningful ways, many times stepping way out of our own comfort zone. Through Kidz RAP, I have seen my children experience the true joy in serving others, and grow a heart for the homeless, lonely, poor, sick, and the lost.

So, as my birthday approaches, please help me give. It's another way I know I can help be a small part of the wonderful things God is doing. And if you don't want to buy my art, that's fine too-just give individually to one of these great ministries. 


Currently, you can find my art at Scallion's Restaurant in the Heights and Message Envy at Midtowne Shopping Center. I have a new floral collage collection at Scallions so go check it out. I have price points from $22 to $500, so do some Christmas shopping now and help support a good cause! I also have available pieces shown on my facebook page that are available for viewing by a personal appointment. 

Please share this with your friends! I'm hoping by the end of October I have a lot to donate! 

Sunday, August 26, 2012

My Favorite Children's Art Lessons

Since I'm taking a short break from teaching and blogging, just thought I'd highlight some of my favorite art lessons that I've taught over the years. If you are new to my blog, it will be a quick way for you to get a sampling of my projects and posts over the past five years.


I love art projects using recycled materials-to see my favorites, click HERE & HERE.



Kids always love using texture in their paintings, like with these cupcakes. To see my favorite mixed media lessons, click HERE and HERE.



Who can say no to Santa! Click HERE &HERE to see my favorite holiday themed lessons.



I Know An Old Lady Who Swallowed a Pie...To see some fun Art & Literature lessons, click HEREHERE.


To see my favorite collage lessons, click HERE and HERE.


To see some fun projects with clay, click HERE and HERE.


To see my favorite simple lessons for little ones, click HERE and HERE.


I love to teach children to copy the greats, to see my favs, click HERE &  HERE.


And my favorite lessons of all, are those that include God's word...for lessons incorporating scripture, click HERE and HERE.

I hope you found something you liked. I'd love to hear what your favorite post was!






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