Tag: acrylic paint

Art Lesson: Clay Animal Bowls


When I was teaching after school gifted art, the most challenging lesson that my students and I did involved clay. I’m no expert when it comes to clay, but it is so much fun to use. So anyway, the theme for gifted art this year was identity and portraiture. For the clay lesson, we made animal bowls (pinch pots became the body of an animal and we attached the rest of the body parts to the bowl). We talked about the personality traits of different animals and then I instructed the students to choose an animal that they related to in terms of personality traits. We made the bowls with red clay, painted them with matte acrylics, and then added a layer of gloss sealer on top. The students did such a great job (although two animals did lose their tails in the process):


Monkey: humor, athleticism


Golden Retriever: loyalty, intelligence


Lion: leadership, strength


Bear: optimism, loyalty

Cute right?? My pink and gold bear is currently sitting on my bookshelf waiting for me to put something in it. Thanks for reading :]



Sneak Peek

For the past several weeks I have been working on the 12-15 pieces for the art show at my school sometime next year. At this point, I’m a little more than halfway done with the series and the goal is to be at least 95% done by the end of this month. Basically what I have left to do is complete a 3×4′ painting, two 10×10″ ink drawings, and finish all the paintings pictured above (I’m already much further along than what is depicted). I will post more details and better (more completed) pictures soon!



12 x 12 canvas, acrylic paint

I recently discovered a way to represent flesh with paint that I really like. In this piece I started with dark brown and went over most of the contours of the hands, with a little extra on the naturally darker parts. Then I covered the majority of the canvas that was left with a deep red paint, and over that i layered on some burnt sienna to make it blend a little better. After that I layered a translucent yellow over most of the hand, and while the paint was still drying, I went over it with a peach color. Since the paint was still fairly wet, a lot of variations in color were created. Finally, I dabbed some tinted white paint on the lightest parts of the hands. The process was surprisingly quick and I was very satisfied with the result. Happy New Years Eve!


Post-Impressionist Study

One of my favorite painters of all time is Vincent van Gogh, so when my painting professor explained that one of our assignments this semester was an impressionist/post-impressionist study, I knew right away which artist I would choose. Van Gogh’s painting “Starry Night” is one of my favorite paintings, but I decided not to tackle it for that reason… Instead, I chose his painting “Still Life with Pears” shown here:

I love painting pears, as you know if you saw one of my first posts, so this painting caught my attention. I also love the colors and the composition. I have a book on van Gogh, which is where I first saw this painting. I found the picture above on the internet, but its fuzzy and the colors are distorted, so here is an image of what I was actually looking at while I painted:

Better, right? Well, after working on it for about 7 hours total, I finally finished today! It turned out much better than I anticipated, and I’m very happy with the final result. Drum roll please…



Show and Tell #1

When I was in 8th grade, I sold my first painting. Surprisingly, it remains the biggest painting I’ve ever done (though not for long). I was homeschooled at the time so I had a more flexible schedule which allowed me to easily do all the work that this project entailed. A couple at the church that I go to commissioned me to do a painting of their home and the land that surrounded it. They were very generous and agreed to pay for both the supplies and the final painting. Beginning in October 2004, I went up to their house and took several pictures. After the couple chose which picture they liked best, I began to draw and then paint on a 48 x 60 inch canvas. I worked all the way through November and into December before I finished. Here is the finished product:

Completing this painting was somewhat of a self-confidence booster because I learned a lot throughout the process and grew quite a bit as an artist. I continue to be very proud of this painting :]


A Complete Work

In my painting class this semester, I have learned several useful skills that will hopefully contribute to my success as an artist as well as save me money, which is always a plus. One of these skills is making canvas to paint on instead of buying it. It is much cheaper to make your own canvas and the process makes your final painting that much more satisfying. The picture above is of the painting I completed a few weeks ago. This is the first canvas I made by myself. I really like how it turned out and I especially like that the surface I painted on was something I created as well.