Sunday, November 17, 2013

Watercolour Teaching for Community Projects

What fun we had with this worthy project. Brenda Silkie of the Creston Rotary group, conceived the idea for this fund raiser which will in part benefit the Therapeutic Activation Program for Seniors in Creston, BC. She approached me (Eileen Gidman), to oversee creating artwork with a group of seniors and special needs high school students for the purpose of printing Christmas cards for sale. As you can see from the poster the cards are printed and ready to be purchased.
If you are teaching a group of people not all that familiar with watercolour painting, I found it was best to meet and work on some basic painting skills. Then once you know the participants' abilities and especially their strengths, it is easier to prepare sessions that set them up for success.
Look at all the wonderful watercolour paintings, now made into cards that the participants created. The four tree and snow paintings, sold together in a set, have a cohesive look yet are individually different. In preparation for the session, I sketched out the images, each slightly different and masked out the white of the birch trees with tape. That way the group could make the most of the time we had together by focussing on painting. We worked through the process as a group but as you can see there was much opportunity for individuality.
The poinsettia was also sketched prior to the class but with no additional instruction, this participant used her own colour sense. The lime pot, added at the end, made this painting jump to life.
The highly creative Christmas tree ornament was painted by J. from the local high school. To prepared ahead of class, I masked out the circle with low stick shelf paper. The participant applied colour in an outward motion, then removed the masking and designed and painted the tree ornament. Many participants expressed their joy at painting and I observed several heart warming interactions between the two groups. Don't you love community projects!


Win Dinn, Artist said...

I love that you're setting your students up to succeed - fabulous job all around!

Laura Leeder said...

A wonderful project Eileen and the cards look terrific!