Saturday, November 24, 2012

Colours flow with more water - part 2

Part 2 of our watercolour exploration started with preparing our paper. Unlike the previous week where I had prepped the paper onto boards, this week it was over to the CKs. Paper was dampened (to stretch the paper) and gum tape cut to size then wet, to secure paper to boards.

Whilst the paper was drying I introduced the CKs to the topic for the day - self portraits. We discussed how their self portraits could be explored. A lot of detail? More abstract perhaps?  As usual, there was no right or wrong approach the work.

We began with a grey lead sketch. There was observation of face shape, eye colour and many decisions (and discussion) around 'parts' that weren't personally liked.

With the boards now dry and sketches complete it was time to start on the main piece. 

To close I invited the CKs to write themselves a note that could be sealed in an envelope – to be opened at a future time. Kind of like a time capsule, as pointed out by one of the boys.    
To assist I asked a series of questions connected to the artist and their portrait, such as:

How old are you? 
What school do you go to?
 Who are the important people in your life? 
What do you like doing?

Some wanted to share with me what they had written, others preferred to keep them private.

For me the letter is a lovely addition to a self-portrait, capturing not only in image but in words a snippet in time. I wonder if in years to come the artists will look back on this with interest and reflection. 


  1. Sounds like a great activity. I especially like the addition of the "note to self". Don't we all need those sometimes!

  2. What sparked the idea was when Mum was cleaning up and found letters I had written (when I was around the same age as the CKs). It was a lovely memory trip. I wrote of the people and animals I loved, what I had been doing, who was my favourite teacher at school! Quite a treat.