Monday, April 5, 2010

Ink blown Greeting Cards

My school has an annual fundraiser called the the Spring Gala where artwork created by students is auctioned off (and usually brings a pretty penny) I have had parent volunteers coming in, soliciting my help with this. It is something fun and different because in most cases the students are working on small pieces of a bigger, final piece (such as a mosaic) This project came into being almost accidentally when a mom came to me and said "I had this project planned out and then the mom donating the materials only gave me the card stock. We were supposed to be creating hand stamped greeting cards... What can we do?" I remembered learning about a cool technique where you drip puddles of india ink on your paper, then blow through a drinking straw to manipulate and move the ink around. We decided that this could be a nice look and went for it. First I had the students use a water color wash technique to create a hand painted background. After the cards dried (over the course of the week) they came back and finished off the details with the india ink. It really is as simple as it sounds. The 6th graders were thrilled to be doing something that feels spontaneous and is undoubtably kind of messy and the results are very Jackson Pollack and abstract. Hopefully they will bring the school a nice donation!

Of course you could alter this lesson to create a bigger painting - I have seen very nice tree paintings done this way, where the students go in after the india ink has dried and added leaves and blossoms with additional water color.

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