Saturday, February 26, 2011

Expressionist Self-Portraits (K-2)

Another K-2 color project this year is the following Expressionist self-portrait series. I had to rethink the self-portrait project for this age because of the time required to do the van Gogh-inspired self-portraits. This one takes only three class periods (as opposed to six).

For this project, K and 1st used crayons and tempera paint, and 2nd used oil pastels and tempera, all on manila drawing paper. The resist technique is basically the same as the watercolor resist underwater paintings we do, but tempera is thicker and more opaque than watercolor, so students have the opportunity to experiment with and compare both types of paint.

Art topics and elements discussed: Expressionism, color use in expressing emotion and mood, proportions of the human face

Brescia - Kindergarten

Samantha - Kindergarten ("Look, Ms. Renn! I'm a RAINBOW!")

Since I can't give first and last names, I prefer to tell you that this young artist's last name is Blue. :) - 1st grade

Chris - 1st grade

Emily - 1st grade

Kalani - 1st grade

Louie - 1st grade

Jozette - 2nd grade

Conrad - 2nd grade

(My classes are 45 minutes, and K-2 meets with me every day for 35 consecutive school days (rather than once a week for the entire year). I much prefer this schedule, as it allows for greater continuity in the classroom (kids don't forget from day to day, but they forget A LOT from week to week). This schedule also allows me to better control supplies.)


  1. Hi Rebecca,

    These self-portraits look fantastic.
    Your students did an amazing job.
    Love the colors!

    Thank you for the kind words for my blog.
    I will be following your blog also.

    I will give your regards to Kim, and Dana

  2. Rebecca,

    I will aslo give your regards to Lissette, Cindy and Stefanie :)It is a small world