Starting on January 9, 25 Winter Art Workshop artists, grades 4-10, are creating works and learning from Vincent van Gogh. Texture, line, movement, and color are the key elements the students will take from van Gogh and create on their own.
The first week was an exercise in line and texture. Using inked preliminary sketches of van Gogh, the students created two 10-minute ink “sketches” using a nib and ink. They selected one of the images to create a work in tooling metal and ink. The work was outstanding. The students learned how texture can create depth in a work. With some experimenting, they also learned how to control the ink they applied to their tooled images.
Van Gogh’s images were compelling, and he created many still life paintings linked to the lives of real life people. His painting of work boots has been analyzed by many. Some think they were boots he purchase on his own, and then wore in a rainstorm to give them character. Others say that they boots were purchased at a flea market, but didn’t fit him so he painted them. The Winter AW students used their own shoes for the pieces they created in week two. First, they drew up to three different charcoal studies. The final piece was created in black and white paste on cardboard. The cardboard supplied the middle tones.
Weeks three and four were devoted to a group 3D painting. The students and their teacher learned much during this project. Each group of students had a van Gogh, or a van Gogh inspired work, which was gridded and cut into strips. The student had no idea what the work would look like until they completed their portion of the project and put the pieces together; this work was done in colored pencil and supplied the background for the final work. As a group, they selected the areas of the painting they wanted to stand out. Four inch wooden discs were sanded, primed, and painted, and installed inside the colored pencil work. These three works will permanently be part of our classroom display. The edges of the discs lended much dimension to the piece.
The students are currently working on a 3D mixed medium piece, which will take them a few session to complete. Van Gogh’s Sunflowers and his self-portraits will also play a part later in the semester.
We don’t want to give away too much! Look for your show invitation in about two weeks, and mark your calendar for March 19th for our 6-8 pm show and reception.