Let us attempt to see… what Delaunay saw!

Sonia and Robert Delaunay

File:Sonia Delaunay, Rythme, 1938.jpg

A lesson to use Watercolor Crayons (yay!)

Grade: 3-5

Orphism or Orphic Cubism

Art Deco Era

Sonia Delaunay was a ground-breaking female artist who made some wonderful abstract paintings known for their rhythm and color.  Orphism was an art movement started by artists Robert and Sonia Delanuay in the early 1900’s as a combination of Abstract Art and Cubism.
Hopefully, this lesson will help students learn that if they use repeating shapes and colors in their art, they can create a very rhythmic picture.
1.  Collect various sizes of circular templates. Jar lids and round plastic containers and their lids work well. If you want to cut circular templates – a handy tool for this prep-step is a circle cutter. You will need to have many circles from 1″ to 8″ wide.  Collect a group of circles in a baggie to be shared amongst  groups of four)
2. Pass out circle shapes to trace, along with a ruler.  Each student’s picture will be filled with shapes that are limited to full circles and half circles, but no other kind of splices. The best way to control this is to ask the students to trace one large circle and one smaller one in any placement on their paper. A center dot is drawn in the middle of each. With a ruler, the student is to draw a line through the center dots.
3. More circles can be traced and added inside and out, but always centering them to the best of the student’s ability.
4. Lightly trace all lines with white crayon. The white crayon will help keep the colors from bleeding into each other.
5. Get Coloring! Students should choose eight colors to repeat throughout their artwork.  Each color should be used in at least three different places.
When all your circle parts are colored, add a background in a less bright, dark, or neutral shade of color. Blue gray would be a good choice.

Make sure the students leave some white on the page – it will give the color space to grow.

The painting will only begin once the crayons are put away.
Ask the students to only dampen their brushes. Providing wet sponges instead of cups of water may help.
This is a lesson that will require careful demonstration.
Each child should have:
11×17 sheet of white paper
a set of (or a set to share) or watercolor crayons
a white crayon
ruler
pencil
water
sponge
brushes
Thanks to Cathy Barbaro of Art Projects for Kids  whose lesson inspired this one.
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