Thursday, October 24, 2013

Spooky Halloween Trees: Art for Primary Children

Here is a quick halloween activity
 for primary students.

Firstly, grab some A3 paper in white or yellow. 
Blue could work nicely too.
Find a circular object and trace around it to make the moon.

We discussed that a centred moon
 does not make a terribly interesting composition.

Now for the fun... charcoal experimentation!
Students were challenged to try using their charcoal sticks
from all angles and create all manner of marks.
This gets a lot of their system as well as being fruitful.

Then I demonstrated how to create variety of tone
 by varying the pressure, using smudging etc. 
They filled in the background, except the moon.

Ink time!
Brushes, nibs, sticks.
More experimentation time.
When it was time to move on,
they used ink to create a tree.

Trees always look easy peasy,
 but actually can be quite challenging for some.
Its important to discuss overlapping,
and the change in the thickness as the tree branches out.

 Many students just put the tree to one side,
 but I like the way this student is playing with position and composition.

Finally, an introduction into light sources.

Turning the fluros on and off in the classroom
and noting how it changes the light on our faces and the objects around us.

We noted that in our spooky pictures

the moon was our light source.
We used a waxy white pencil and simple lines to highlight the branches and trunk of the tree.

A simple line on the underside or top side of the branch
 was all that was required to make the trees extra spooky.

What else?

Add a eerie bird. 
Take a photo of the image and play with filters.
Create a new foreground.
Or, simply put it up for halloween!

Boo everybody!


  1. Wonderful! I really like the effect on the yellow paper. Thanks for the great post!

  2. Thanks Mary, yes the yellow is effective. I think I'd try blue next time too.


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