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Drawing Flowers  Grade 6-8

O'Keefe Blending Chalk Pastel

National Standards for the Visual Arts(1b, 4a)

4-5 class periods

Instructional Objectives-  Students will recognize the artwork of Georgia O'Keefe and compare the work with artists of the same time period.  Content Standard 4a:  Understanding the visual arts in relation to history and cultures.  Students know and compare the characteristics of art works in various eras and cultures.  Students will create a chalk pastel drawing that incorporates blending and tinting. Content Standard 1b:  Understanding and applying media, techniques, and processes.  Students intentionally take advantage of the qualities and characteristics of art media, techniques, and processes to enhance communication of their experiences and ideas.

Set-  Explain that Georgia O'Keefe is an American woman artist who became famous for painting flowers because she painted them so large.  She decided to be an artist when she was in the 8th grade.  She was interested in aesthetics.  She wanted to fill space with beauty.  She took small objects and drew them large and close-up so that viewers would pay attention to their beauty.  She continued following her own vision through all the years of her life, never being pulled into Abstract Expressionism, Pop art, or any other of the many movements that have dominate the American art scene through the twentieth century.  Display O'Keefe as well as artists from these movements and ask students for differences between the works.  Ask which ones are more aesthetically pleasing.    

Instruction- The students should imitate her style by drawing the flower so large it fills the paper and maybe even goes off the edge of the paper.  Demonstrate light sketching of shapes from the small drawing to the large paper.  Fill the entire sheet.  Show color blending with white and with two primary colors.  Remind students not to mix complements.  Encourage them to use the realistic colors found in their pictures. Tell students that they will do details last so that the colors to not smear.  Explain that details are small shapes and lines such as dots in the center, stamen, or decorative stripes.    Have students choose their picture to work from and begin to pass out paper.  Tell students to get a pencil and eraser if they do not have them and then return to seat and get started.  

Supervised Practice: Students will draw a light, large sketch in pencil of the basic shape.  Help students individually with proportion.  Show them how to turn the picture and their drawing upside down to make it easier to draw.  All students should begin drawing on the first day.  At the end of class students write names on work and tape their photograph to the top edge of the paper.      

Independent Practice:  Students will complete the drawing stage on the second day.  They will use chalk pastel and blend their colors with white to create highlights for detail.  Fifteen minutes before the class is over have students put drawing in drying rack with newsprint covering chalk work.  

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