Art Inspired by Artists
By far, my favorite art projects are those that become “artist inspired art lessons.” Although I appreciate the old artists, I find that I lean toward new and upcoming artists for inspiration for my art classes.
Of all the art projects that I do with the elementary students, I think the ones I’ve enjoyed the most are the ones where we attempt to imitate the work of an artist. I’ve spent a considerable amount of time Googling art. And when I find art that really says something to me—well, I want to show pictures to my students and then together we try to imitate the artist’s work. Sometimes we use the same art medium as the artist, and sometimes we do our own thing.
In this article I want to introduce you to some of these favorite artists, show some of their work, give you a link to their website so you can look at their art gallery, and show you a sample of student art that was inspired by the artist.For inspiration in the art room, I only have to look to the works of the artists that inspire me.
One of the rules when writing on HubPages is that no article can contain more than two links to any particular site or blog.
Therefore, in order to share with you the artists that have inspired some of my art projects, it will be necessary for you to click here, Kids & Glitter, to go to my blog.
The different project shown below will include the grade Gallery where the projects can be found. I’m sorry for the inconvenience, but I have to follow the rules.
Debbie Adams Tips on Drawing
Debbie recommends getting graphite pencils, quality paper, fixative spray, tortillions and a kneaded eraser for great charcoal drawings.
Here are some of her other tips:
1. Look at negative space, the areas between the subjects, be sure to include these to get a realistic drawing.
2. Examine your subject and look at it in values of shades rather than the color,
3. Use a knead eraser to lift out highlights.
4. Practice everyday, no matter what the subject may be.
5. Keep all of your artwork; you can look back on it to see that you have improved, and with daily practice you will, I promise.
6. Remember to be kind to yourself and not too critical of your artwork, what you think looks bad is awesome to someone else.
“Barns in Graphite,” can be found in the 6th Grade Projects Gallery on Kids & Glitter
Debbie Adams: charcoal barn drawings
Debbie is primarily a self-taught artist in charcoal, oils, pastels, and watercolors. She says that she likes to explore different art mediums, with watercolors, along with a few others, being her most recent interest. She says watercolors seem more fascinating to her than the oil and soft pastels. “Though I will always hold dear the charcoal, which I have always found to be a fascinating medium.”Debbie’s charcoal barns are my favorite.
Visit the REDBUBBLE site to see the Debbie Adams art gallery.
Charcoal Drawing Supplies – to get you started
One of Debbie Adams’ suggestions to me was to be sure to use a fixative to protect the finished art. She said even the first attempts should be protected and kept so the artist can look back at how they started and compare it to the improvements made with practice.
Yuko Lau – Happy, Colorful Art
Yuko Lau was born in Japan. You can buy her posters at ART.COM. She came to the states and after graduating college, she worked for about ten years as a furniture studio artist. Today she uses her creativity in graphic arts. In her biography she states that she wants people to have a smile on their face when they see her art work.With Yuko’s art as an inspiration, my 4th grade class drew and colored animals. The elementary school won a trip to the Henry Doorly zoo in Omaha by reading a lot of books, so we put the animals behind bars to celebrate their winning the trip. Their art was so cute before adding the bars, that this year we’ll leave the animals free.
“At The Zoo with Yuko Lau” is the name of the project in the 4th Grade Projects Gallery on Kids & Glitter.
Stushie: American Bird Art
I love the simplicity of Stushie’s art. He is a Presbyterian pastor who lives in Knowxville, Tennessee. On his website he says that his art is a way for him to relax. Stushie has a wide variety of subjects that he paints: landscapes, animals, birds, religious themes, etc. He is very proficient in his style of art. It’s hard to believe that he uses crayons on black paper for many of his pictures.
Be sure to visit Stushies very interesting website.
You’ll find this project called “Swan Lake”, in the 3rd Grade Projects Gallery at Kids & Glitter.
Rosina Wachtmeister – whimsical cat prints
Rosina Wachtmeister studied art in Brazil and now lives in Rome, where she works on her whimsical art, prints and posters. She has mastered the art of using bright colors in her captivating animal prints. Rosina’s art has a quality about it that makes your imagination naturally dream up stories about the piece. I love her paintings of cats because of their playful, childlike style that begs to be imitated.
This project simply called, “Cats” is found in the 4th Grade Projects Gallery at Kids & Glitter.
Kate Mawdsley – Simple and Colorful Inspiration
Kate Mawdsley was interested in art at a very early age. She preferred playing with paper, pencils and paint rather than toys. She started her career in the fashion industry, but after 10 years began creating greeting cards, kitchenware and paper products. Today her repertiore has expanded to mugs, crosstitch and tableware.Kate Mawdsley, artist, is the inspiration for our 2nd grade project. Her animal paintings are so simple and colorful. This is a good project to get the kids to draw large; to fill the paper.
This project called, “Animal Art a la Kate Mawdsley,” can be found in the 2nd Grade Projects Gallery at Kids & Glitter.
Peruvian Arpillera Artists – inspired by their textile art
Arpilleras are intricately detailed hand sewn textile pictures. Each piece illustrates some aspect of daily life for the women of the Andes. The arpillera, in an array of colors , tells the story of the country markets where locals come to buy vegetables, clothing and wool for weaving. Although the Peruvians use fabric in their beautiful textile, for this art project the 4th grade used construction paper scraps.
You’ll find this project, “Peruvian Arpillera Art,” in the 4th Grade Projects Gallery at Kids & Glitter.
Debi Hubbs: Art With a Sense of Humor
Debi Hubbs is a popular artist and illustrator known for a whimsical style. Her art can be found in many different venues worldwide. From fun art to fine art. Her sense of humor, shown in her paintings, proves that art is fun. We chose samples of her art to imitate. We first drew the picture, and then colored in the background (negative spaces) with black. It’s amazing how the details of the picture become more distinct doing this.
She has a website at, Debi Hubbs Illustration.
The “Jungle Cat” art project is found in the 6th Grade Projects Gallery on Kids & Glitter.
Laurel Burch: So Many Choices
The beautiful, imaginative paintings of Laurel Burch are our inspiration for this project. Visit the Laurel Burch website. We projected her artwork onto the SmartBoard by going to her website, entering her Art Gallery and clicking on the gallery slideshows. Viewing her art gave the class lots of ideas, and helped them create bright, whimsical pictures of animals and birds of their own.
The project called, “Laurel Burch Inspired” is found in the 5th Grade Projects Gallery at Kids & Glitter.