Oh, Oh, Oh!

ooo by bluerabbit
card at Zazzle
This is one of three large acrylic paintings on canvas done to fit the theme of a contemporary art show in a local gallery. The theme was "Text."

At the time, I had just finished the manuscript for my phonics book, "ABC, Follow Me!" The book concerns itself with the shapes of letters as well as the sounds they represent. It also includes a number of craft projects to teach these shapes. In short, I had letters on my mind.

I started the first painting with an elaborate concept, but it just wasn't working, so I let it dry and moved to another. The same thing happened. The deadline was approaching, and I didn't know what to do.

Then, I decided to use letters as English words. I painted each of the large canvases with a different pure hue. I started with I, I, I, I; moved to three U's ("Oh lucky You"), which add another layer, as they suggest horseshoes. The one shown here is "Oh, Oh, Oh". It calls to mind the famous joke:

A first grade teacher comes out to the parking lot and sees her bumper dented. Then she fumes, "Oh, oh, oh! Look, look, look! Darn, darn, darn!

Recently, I used the concept I developed with these paintings in a demonstration for school children. We made paintings on bright hues if single letters.

Still Life

Orange by bluerabbit
Other posters from zazzle.com
I did this painting as a demonstration for school children. Betty Edwards has a great recommendation in Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain. She says to create a one-object still life. She uses potatoes and bits of ribbon. I like fruit. I had a bag of oranges at home, so this orange is what I used.

This is a great painting problem for artists of all ages and stages. There is a lot of room for stylistic interpretation.

The Butterfly Effect

Inspired by a challenge on Red Bubble and based upon my extremely limited understanding of Chaos Theory, this digital work began as a tiny portion of an original photograph. I enlarged my selection, changed the colors, mirrored it twice, filtered it multiple times, and changed the colors again. The bird just appeared.

Paint Some Sunflowers

Everybody loves sunflowers. They are bold, simple, and colorful. Inspire students by showing them a reproduction of a sunflower painting by Vincent Van Gogh (he did several), and then set up a couple of vases with real, or artificial blooms for your students to draw. They can work in tissue collage, tempera, or crayon. It is a winning project for artists of all ages.

Emergence

A couple of years ago, I cut individual words from magazine pages and put them in a plastic bag. I pulled one out at the beginning of each work session. This painting was inspired by the word "Emergence".

It is filled with mysterious images and intricate passages with subtle color interactions. The original painting is 16 x 20" and was done in acrylic on canvas. The print is available on several different kinds of paper, and also on canvas.

Electricity in Blue

I love this series of expressionist works. I begin each one with a random element, such as a word chosen from a printed source, background music, or a brushstroke contributed by an onlooker. I then add more thick paint, or a glaze and see what the canvas has to tell me.

This particular piece was featured in a beautiful short film called “Lumenis” by Brazilian composer and filmmaker Bernardo Uzeda. (http://bernardouzeda.kinghost.net/)

Something Fishy

Kindergarteners took turns painting colorful fish on a green background, which I modified into this abstract pond. Show a print of this picture as a sample and invite primary students to create a fish painting in tempera. (This one is acrylic on canvas.) Limit the colors to three or, at most, four.