Posts Tagged ‘fingerpaint’

have a foxy b-day, eric carle!

it’s eric carle‘s birthday, and art bloggers all over the web have been celebrating with their children and colorful animals! we were invited by an amazing child to join the party – and we’re showing up with bells smocks on!

when i think of eric carle, i remember N’s very first baby books and how much she loved when i read the very hungry caterpillar (my all-time fav) and brown bear brown bear to her in our comfy nursing chair before sleepy time. these will always be cozy memories for me. in the past year, N has been reeeeally into foxes – it’s her most favorite animal. can you tell?

i saw the book hello, red fox in our local library and decided to grab it, as we had not read it before. what a perfect choice, as it teaches children about complementary colors in a really cool optical illusion sort of way – and we’ve been exploring color wheels over here lately. we dove right in and read/stared at the book. (if you click this link, you’ll understand why. it’s tricky – like a fox!)

then we got out a bunch of art materials for two different projects…

first, we mixed and created our own color wheel using momma’s fancy watercolors (just because) and talked about the idea of complementary colors… and why the “red” fox on the cover of eric carle’s book was green… hmm…

after that, i suggested we use some of N’s finger paintings brought home from preschool to build an animal – eric carle style! she wanted to make a fox – naturally! (hey, there’s one idea of how to repurpose and transform all of those preschool pieces of art…)

first, we talked about what shapes make up a fox, and she drew them in pencil on top of her fingerpaintings. circle, oval, triangles, rectangles…

then she cut the pieces of a fox… hooray for cutting skills! she did a great job cutting on her pencil lines.

then she pasted them onto a new sheet of paper – N chose black for the background.

after it was glued down, she used a black sharpie (supervised) to add some details to the nose and eyes. this was literally a paint cut paste experience!

what’s your favorite eric carle book, and what memories does it hold for you? have you made any eric carle art with your kiddos? if so, click below to share your own, or click to view many other bloggers’ creative takes on eric carle tribute art!


 

06.23

2011
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baby blessing sunburst

my sister-in-law & brother-in-law are expecting their second baby this summer – yay! i wanted to do something special to celebrate his pending arrival. what better than a collaborative art piece where family and friends get involved?

i have done this project before for a friend a couple years ago, and it was beautiful and well-received, so i figured we’d give it a whirl for my nephew on the way. i emailed a list of people the couple provided to me and asked each one to send a brief blessing, prayer, wish, quote, or lyric for the family as they welcome their new son. i gathered the quotes and put them into a keepsake book for the family, along with the well-wishers names.

then i selected excerpts from the quotes and wrote them out on pretty goldenrod card stock (this time without everyone’s name.) after i wrote them out, i cut them into strips.

i watercolored a mandala of the family to place in the center of the art piece, which i envisioned would be a sunburst.

we recently visited our adorable nephew (1y 5m old), who is soon to be a big brother, and he (along with mommy and daddy’s help) finger painted the background image for this blessing piece of art. tip: use analogous colors of finger paint so that it doesn’t turn out brown or muddy, unless that’s the look you’re going for.

after the paint was dry, i glued the blessings and mandala to the finger painting to create a sun shape.

what a colorful collection of wishes for the new baby on the way!

this piece, which i framed for their home, holds the energy of all of their loved ones’ support as they welcome a new little boy into the world!

05.17

2011
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blessing big brothers & sisters

many of my closest friends are having/have had their second baby this year. to celebrate these new little people entering the world, we have held mother’s blessing ceremonies (or blessingway ceremonies) in lieu of the traditional baby shower. with an older sibling in the mix, it is essential to include them in the celebration, as this is a huge rite of passage for them, as well.

this spring, i prepared an intimate blessing for a dear friend of mine, where her son (then 18 months) participated in an art project for his little brother to be. first, i gathered the prayers, wishes, and blessings from the family’s nearest and dearest via email, and i wrote their words on pretty paper. i cut the papers into small strips. then i painted a mandala for the growing family. in the mandala i painted a symbolic, abstract portrait of the soon-to-be foursome. after that, i visited the family and engaged their son in a fingerpainting project, which he really enjoyed! his mom and dad also helped with the painting for the new baby.

big brother to be

big brother to be

after the finger painting was complete and dry, i glued the mandala to the center of it with the blessings radiating out from there. i put it into a simple frame, and the family now has it hanging in their sons’ bedroom. the energy of this piece encapsulates the words of the family’s family and closest friends, and the marks of mom, dad, and the big brother, with an image from me, as well.

framed blessings

framed blessings

at another blessing ceremony for another girlfriend in her second pregnancy, the group of us created a beaded necklace to bless the big sister to be and honor her new role. first, i handed out small pieces of pretty papers to the group of gathered family and friends. on these papers, everyone wrote sweet wishes and notes to the eldest child. each participant brought or selected a bead to offer, as well.

beads & blessings

beads & blessings

we went around in a circle and read our wishes aloud to the child, and offered our beads. after the ceremony, i strung the beads onto a necklace for the big sister to wear, and pasted the blessings into a small book that she can forever cherish.

big-sis-to-be with her necklace & blessing book

big-sis-to-be with her necklace & blessing book

there are so many art projects that are involved in mother’s blessings; however, here i chose to share just a few artful ways in which i have honored these joyful new beginnings for the eldest sibling in a family.

 

09.14

2009
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fingerpainted silhouettes

there’s a lot of fingerpainting going on in my house. yep, it is one of the choice art activities for two-year-olds. many of N’s fingerpaintings remain in-tact in her mom-made portfolio (two pieces of poster board bound at 3 edges.) while some fingerpaintings take on new life.

a full fingerpainting

a full fingerpainting

one of my favorite things to do with the fingerpaintings is to find interesting sections of them and cut them out. then i paste them onto blank greeting cards. i send these as thank you notes, birthday cards for N’s friends, etc. all are custom pieces of art! (the grandparents love getting their paws on these sorts of things!)

another idea i saw on sarah jane studios blog was to cut the paintings into animal silhouettes. for N’s grandma’s birthday, i created a cat shape (grandma loves cats) of my own and traced it onto one of N’s bright and beautiful paintings and cut it out. i glued it to a nice heavy piece of white stock. (this is truly a paint cut paste project!) then i got an inexpensive frame at the craft store, and a great birthday gift came to life.

grandma's birthday cat

grandma's birthday cat

for mothers’ day, i was inspired to make a little cut-out image from lots of colorful fingerpainted scraps for N’s other grandmother, who she lovingly calls “gwee” and it turned out kinda cute.

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N & gwee

so why not repurpose the thousands of fingerpaintings you might have stuck on your fridge into some cute gifts and cards?

05.09

2009
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