Posts Tagged ‘painting’

Monet Art Projects for Kids

Thursday, September 1st, 2016


This post contains affiliate links. I was given access to the class to blog about it, which I was very glad to do.

This is the third week of Mixing with the Masters, and my kids created three beautiful Monet art projects. Many Impressionist works of art focus on light shining on water, and these pieces of art are painted quickly. I love the colors that Monet used in his paintings. The Impressionists loved to paint outdoors.

Impression Sunrise Painting

This first Impression Sunrise painting was created quickly beginning with a burnt orange paper. Alisha (the art instructor) gives you step by step instructions on how to paint this scene briskly with back and forth strokes of the brush. I like the reflection of the setting sun in the water, and the silhouette of two boats in the foreground.


Japanese Footbridge Wax Resist


This project came out beautiful! Alisha shows how to create this crayon resist with oil pastels and watercolors. She uses a secret ingredient to cause the scene to look like it has thousands of tiny leaves. I thought it was incredibly clever!


We listened to the song “Like a Bridge Over Troubled Water” by Simon and Garfunkel while painting the bridge.


We dumped all the greens, yellows, and blues onto the table, and the kids created the scene with these colors.

I decided to do a watercolor based on a different Monet bridge scene:


The colors were fun, and I used a Bob Ross brush that he uses to paint his “happy little clouds.” I painted the bushes, trees, and grasses with that brush. And I did the same crayon resist that Alisha shows you in the Japanese Footbridge piece.

Waterlilies Red Mixed Media


This was another lovely project. We painted blue water on a canvas, along with the water lilies. We made the red water lilies three-dimensional by gluing them onto the lily pads. Alisha gives great instructions for how to make the water lilies come alive in the water.


We are thoroughly enjoying this Mixing with the Masters art class, and we can’t wait for next week, which is Vincent Van Gogh!


Rembrandt Art Projects for Kids

Thursday, August 25th, 2016


This post contains affiliate links. I was given access to the class to blog about it, which I was very glad to do.

We are on the second lesson of Mixing with the Masters, and this week we are doing some beautiful Rembrandt art projects. Rembrandt is my favorite painter. I’ve used his artwork to teach my children Bible stories, since he painted so many biblical scenes:

Charcoal & Gesso Portrait


The first art project is a charcoal and gesso portrait of Rembrandt. This artwork is better for older students, since the shading on the face is crazy. Your kids need to be prepared for the first layer to look unfinished. This is a three-day art project.

Before you start, print out the sketch (template) of Rembrandt that Alisha (the art instructor) provides. I also printed the black and white portrait and the gray scale. I enjoyed Alisha’s teaching about the gray scale, and my children noticed different shades and tried to match the gray scale shades to what they were painting with gesso.


Coloring on the back of the template with a charcoal pencil will enable you to transfer the sketch to the paper without your children having to draw the original. You just use a mechanical pencil without lead to trace the sketch onto the watercolor paper.

Let the first layer of gesso dry, and the next day you can darken or lighten your drawing in different places. Alisha gives instructions on how to do this in the demonstration video for this project.


The gesso portraits came out way better than I thought they would! I was expecting them to look like a Picasso, based on how crazy they looked on the first day when we shaded the faces. It was almost as if someone splatted Rembrandt with a chocolate pie, except in black and white.

The most fun part of this project was painting the gesso on top of the charcoal and having the shades mix while you paint. We had never used gesso before!

Ink Pen Sketching


All you need for this ink pen sketching is a pen and paper. We used Alisha’s template for the shape of the dog so that we could focus on the cross-hatching technique that Rembrandt used on his etchings. The puppies came out cute.

The Mill: Mixed Media


We started this mixed media project with a black canvas. (I prepared the canvas by giving it two coats of black paint before we began the project.) I also bought four different scrapbooking papers that had cool patterns in brown. We used that for the cliff and windmill, using the template that Alisha provides in her class.

Alisha’s mill looked a lot more like the original painting by Rembrandt, with a light tan sky and dark brown earth. She talked about the use of chiaroscuro, which is a technique that uses light and dark for effect. We just reversed the effect by painting a dark sky blue and having the mill be a lighter tan.


If you would like to take this class, go get it here: Mixing with the Masters. We are really enjoying these art projects!


Ship in the Moonlight

Wednesday, January 22nd, 2014


I’m shocked at how good this “Ship in the Moonlight” backdrop came out! It was pretty easy to paint. I’m going to show you the steps I went through to paint this scene. I painted it as one of the backdrops for my creative writing class: Time Travel: Writing Historical Fiction. It represents “The Midnight Ride of Paul Revere,” where Paul Revere waited to see if he should put one lamp or two in the church tower, to indicate whether or not the British were coming by land or by sea. The famous poem by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow was memorized by each of my three sons years ago, when they recited it while wearing a three-cornered hat.

How to Paint a Ship in the Moonlight:

  1. Tape a large piece of butcher paper to a wall or large window. I used packing tape to make sure it wouldn’t fall off my glass sliding door.
  2. Grab your dark blue tempera paint, and paint the entire paper except for a circle, which will be the moon. (Make the moon larger than you want it, because you will be blending the white into the blue in just a minute.)
  3. Paint the moon white, and carefully blend in the blue in circles around the moon. This was surprisingly easy.
  4. Let the background dry overnight.
  5. Get a black permanent marker and draw a ship, using a picture from a book. The more details you put in for the rigging, the more impressive it will look.
  6. Fill in the bottom part of the ship with black tempera paint. Then get a fanned paint brush, and swoosh black paint lightly for the water of the ocean. The water took me maybe 10 minutes to paint. I made a shadow for the ship, and I filled it in with more swooshes of the fanned brush.

Your “Ship in the Moonight” backdrop is now complete! You can use it to recite “Paul Revere’s Ride”, re-enact night scenes from history, or leave it hanging on your wall as a work of art.

Paint by Number

Tuesday, July 31st, 2012

paint-by-number-1You would think that paint by number would decrease creativity in children, but I’ve found the opposite to be true. My son learned how to shade horses by doing a paint by number. We bought the kit at a craft supply store. The thin canvas has an outline of the picture, with numbers inside each area. The number corresponds to a color. For example, number 8 is light blue. You go ahead and paint each area the correct colors until you finish the painting.

paint-by-number-2Later on I noticed that my son was drawing horses freehand. When he colored in the horses with colored pencils, he shaded the mane in the same way that he did for the paint by number. So his artistic skill increased because of the paint by number. Now the beautiful painting of horses can be seen in the hallway of our home. (Actually, another son painted the horses in my hallway. We gave the collection of horses as a gift to Grandma, who owned horses for years. You can see one of our horse paint by numbers in the YouTube video “Hallway Art Gallery.”)