Monday, September 9, 2013

Fun Starry Night Art Project!

Here's a project that I did with my art students last year that I thought would be fun to share with you.
I found the idea for this project on an awesome website called, You'll love it. This project is absolutely one of my very favorites. It's fun and produces great results for any age especially K-8 and even teens and adults. I'm planning to try this project myself with a simplified version of our Cincy skyline. I'll let you know how it turns out. You could try your city, too. I'll share with you a list of supplies and instructions on how to do it and I'll show you some amazing samples of some of my students masterpieces.

12 x 14 watercolor paper
Paint brushes
Black sharpie marker
Pale colored crayons
Chunks of candle wax
Toothbrush m
Water container
Watercolor paints
Paper towels
Egg crate palette


1. Discuss the artist Vincent van Gogh and his painting " ,Starry Night ". He is known for his energetic brushstrokes, daring color combinations and simple but amazing compositions.

2. Using a black sharpie marker draw all of your buildings large on the bottom 2/3 of the paper.
Then draw doors, windows and chimneys. Then draw large stars and a moon in the sky.

3. Color in the windows and yeah patterns to the buildings using pale colored crayons. Press hard so the crayon will resist the watercolor paint.

4. Now mix watercolors in the egg crate and begin to paint the buildings starting from left and go to the right. I recommend not using yellow or whatever color you're planning to use for your sky. Paint each building starting at the top and working your way down. Do not outline in the paint and then fill it in because this does not work very well with watercolors.When all your buildings are finished paint the roofs and doors.

5. Using yellow crayon or a another  pale color draw swirly patterns in the sky then color in your
moon and stars pressing hard.

6. Now mix enough of your sky color into your palette, then paint the sky area right on top of the stars and moon and swirls. Don't worry because they will resist because of the wax. Allow to dry or blow dry completely.

7. Now use candlewax to draw over your swirls, stars and moon once again. Then paint another layer of sky color once again to make nice and rich.

8. For the finishing touch use a toothbrush to spatter colored paint on top of the entire painting making it look like night time.

The students worked through the project step by step with me for 2 classes making a total of 3 hours.
They were so proud of their work when they were finished.

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