Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Art Adventure: Chinese Brush Strokes

So, sorry about not posting something last week. I just completely spaced out on it. I'm cool like that.

This week I thought I'd share the lesson I used in Gabe's 2nd Grade class. We talk about Chinese art.
Chinese paintings are often depictions nature, and is characterized by color washes and flowing brush strokes. 
The same brush strokes, going from thick to thin, can be seen in the calligraphy as well. Many of the painting include a poem written in calligraphy.
"Light" Check out this site for instructions on calligraphy.
It can be fun to try calligraphy too, but remember, Chinese doesn't have an alphabet, the characters represent words, so do not expect to look up how to write your name.

Nature Pictures
  • Crayola Brush Paint Pens
  • paper
The closest brush I could find that more resembles a Chinese brush that allows for thick and thin lines, was actually the Crayola brush paint pens. It's about $3-$4 dollars for a pack of five. The paint is built in which makes for less mess.

After looking at some Chinese paintings, have your child make a nature scene. Try laying the brush on its side 

and then lifting gently to the tip of the brush to go from making a thick to thin stroke.

You could also try some calligraphy.

The entire class really enjoyed these brush paint pens. It's worth the small investment even if your child doesn't want to make these particular pictures. Sometimes just using a new tool is excitement enough.

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