Friday, June 3, 2011

International Year of the Forest- Art Tutorial

Forests are magical places..ask any child. Adults feel it too! Haven't you?

It's not just that we grow up with the fables and legends, so many of which are located in forests, it's so much more that that; it's everything from the floor to the canopy - the animals, the fungi, the noises. They are spiritual places.

In Australia we have the rainforests on the coast & the old growth forests of Tasmania, small parts of which are still largely untouched and pristine. But we also have the dry open forests with gums and wattle or the forests of wallum that dot the sand dunes. So many of these areas are still under threat by development, all in the name of ticky-tacky suburbs and highrises. 

For those in America, England, Europe and Asia the concept of forest is different again. All unique, all beautiful. Please share...

International Year of the Forest is a time to celebrate and hopefully educate - these artworks  convey some glimpses into a child's concept of forest. These are by 9 and 10 year old boys who were so excited by the topic that the room was all abuzz with a positive energy.

The results were everything from scary..... sparse (loving that sugar glider!) flourishing and healthy devastated yet hopeful.

... to dynamic, totemic, scary eyed and more.....

What to hunt and gather:
Coloured paper, glue, black and white pencil and tracing paper.

What to do:
Tear the paper in long strips and play around with creating tree shapes. We used 2 or 3 colours to layer the trees and we discussed creating different levels and looking at the negative spaces.

Add some more detail such as animals and leaves.

Now the final layer:
Tear some tracing paper into a tree shape or leaves or animals..whatever...
Using a white and black pencil add detail and highlights. I show the a slideshow of detailed forest images to stimulate ideas and provide some extra visual knowledge to draw from.

Wow! I just love all the different interpretations of FOREST.
In so many ways this was a learning experience for everyone.


  1. What a neat idea! =) I love the depth of it all. & it is so neat to see how people interpret things so differently!

  2. Hi Lynda... I love your blog... these kids are so lucky to have you as their teacher. It feels so fresh and invigorated what you are doing!
    Lovely to meet you Saturday...
    ps I'll be back to see more!

  3. These are beautiful. I love the layers and the bright colors. They would look so nice framed in threes on a wall. I am doing this with my little ones soon. Thanks for linking to my art party last week. Come back later today and link up again.

  4. These look amazing, and the process looks fantastic, too.

  5. These trees are beautiful.
    I love the movement of the lines.

  6. Such a creative idea! Thanks for sharing and linking up ; )

  7. Those trees are absolutely amazing! Great job! Saw you on Sassy Sites...I'm a new blogger too :)

  8. great idea!! These surfaces are amazing! thanks!

  9. These trees are so beautiful they look like they were created by professional artists! Good on ya!


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