lundi 9 septembre 2013

Artists That Will Inspire Your Children

By Kate Halfey

It is often difficult for many children to come up with ideas for art projects. While there is certainly no wrong style of art, we often see children, when left to their own devices, creating drawings of images with which they are quite familiar, such as a local park, a favorite pet or a family portrait. To further enhance your child's creativity, show them the works of famous artists and a range of styles that will inspire them to think outside the box.

For many kids, it is easiest for them to draw, paint and color pictures that are fairly realistic, but it can be fun to introduce them to familiar scenes painted in less realistic ways. Impressionism and Post-Impressionism are two styles of art that look somewhat realistic yet are somewhat different. You can show your child how to mimic the brush strokes of an artist such as Seurat or even download a printable mural of one of his works from a website like This site breaks down famous works of art into manageable sections which you color and then reposition like a puzzle, and you end up with a work of art very similar yet different from the original. Other artists to consider include Vincent Van Gogh and Claude Monet.

Surrealist painters such as Salvador Dali, Joan Miro or Rene Magritte offer plenty of great inspirational easy art projects for kids. Show the children some of Miro's work and explain how he used circles and lines to create dreamlike images of people, animals and objects. Encourage the children to draw stick figures with circles here and there and then color the various sections, circles and intersecting parts to create a colorful picture. Magritte's "Son of Man," is a fun painting to mimic. Just have children create a person with every element except the face. In place of this feature, add an apple or really any type of fruit or food or even an object and have them talk about why they chose that object.

The style of art known as abstract is a wonderful option for children as it allows them to create with color but not have to worry about any real structure or form. To begin an abstract project, show them the pictures of Sonia Delauney or Jackson Pollack. For Delauney, consider creating a project based around colorful circles. For Pollack, dive in and get messy, splashing or dripping paint onto a blank canvas or even using your fingers for part of the painting. You can even paint the paper first in one solid color and then splash on a variety of colors.

While we often think of art as something just for a museum wall, it is truly all around us. Have children look at advertisements in magazines, packages of food products and even comic books. All of these have been created and designed by someone, and all can serve as objects of art. Pop artists such as David Hockney and Andy Warhol certainly thought so, as did Roy Lichtenstein. A fun Pop art project could include a combination of Warhol and Hockney. Have children find a full-page advertisement from a magazine. Tear out this page and cut into pieces, strips or squares. Glue the pieces onto a paper or canvas in the original order, but move them so that they overlap a bit or tilt a tiny bit to give a slightly odd view.

In the end, the most important thing your children will learn is that art truly has no limit. Whatever a child thinks is beautiful, striking or captivating in some way can be the basis for an amazing art project.

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