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Wednesday, January 06, 2010

Kids Art: Glue and Chalk Pastel

Staying home with Ana during these two weeks of Winter Break, I was happy to have the days flow without any set schedule. Og was home most of the days too, so, it was a riot.

After the early breakfast, Og and Ana would play with some current favorite toy/activity, or would chase each other about the house, or get me to be the Dragon/Monster/Dinosaur that roars and tries to eat them, or dance to some favorite music... maybe even do some coloring.

The days leading up to Christmas were exciting: we made greeting cards and cookies, decorated the tree and made stockings, and of course, watched the usual Christmas-y movies, the usual.

And after Christmas, I started thinking about 2010 and all the things that need to get done and such... knotting myself up, and getting in a foul mood. I do this to myself a lot - sort of self-destructive in a way, but, I guess we all handle stress in our own way - some less volatile than others...

Anyway, it seemed like Ana was feeling my post-Xmas restlessness and was bored with the carefree schedule of the first week of Winter Break.

Before the Winter Break, Ana had done a glue and chalk pastel art in school: An Apple Tree. She enjoyed it and loved the finished product so much that she wanted to do more. So, we decided to make a few more glue and chalk pastel art, one especially for Nana to take back with her.

kids art glue and chalk pastelThe idea is simple:
  1. Create pencil sketch/outline of the scene/object of interest on black paper.
  2. Apply glue on the lines - glue that dries on clear.
  3. After the glue dries, it leaves an embossed-looking sketch that can be colored in with chalk pastel, blending the color with the fingers or tissue paper.

The type and quality of paper plays a role when working with chalk pastels. Heavy construction paper and card stock seem to be fine so far. We did try with regular colored chalkboard chalks and the effect was muted and unkempt.

kids art glue and chalk pastelItems used:
Elmers™ School glue
black card stock paper
chalk pastels

The outline that Ana draws, is, of course, quite free form. The only part that I do for the project is apply the glue on her sketch to make the outlines clear so she can color them in easily and the object being portrayed is discernible :)

We made a Christmas Tree for Nana. Ana drew a rough Christmas Tree shape with ornaments and such. I applied the glue outline and allowed it to dry. Then, Ana started coloring in with chalk pastel, using her fingers to blend in the color.

kids art easy chalk pastel project with glue on black paper

While we were at it, Ana was in the mood for creating more. She suggested making a scene: a boat on ocean waves with sun shining in the sky. And that is what we did :)

The nice thing is, if we didn't like the colors we chose to use in the first place, we can simply apply the new color chalk pastel over it and blend it in. This produces interesting effects. Gives lots of room for experimentation and 'doing over' till satisfied.

The blending of the colors is a Zen-like activity. However, after a while it can get monotonous. So, we keep the palette small - just a few colors for each project - applied in specific areas and blended just enough to cover the stark scratches of color.

If preferred, apply some fixative as there will be some dust from the chalk pastels. I prefer "laminating" it - i.e., using clear contact sheet :)

kids art easy chalk pastel project with glue on black paper

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At 10:08 PM, Blogger Swapna Raghu Sanand said...

Awesome idea. It has creative dimensions too.

At 7:09 PM, Blogger Sheela said...

Thanks, Swapna. I liked this as it is so easy to do - very few items - but the result is quite stunning :)


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