Multi-Media Self Portraits for Kindergarten
Multi-media self portraits are great art experiences for parents to have with their kids at home as well as in the classroom. Young children change so much that it is nice to have a collection of self portraits made in the early years as a keepsake of their artistic development. I like to start my Kindergarten students’ school year off with a series of self portraits. I also wrap up the year with a self portrait so their families can see their growth. This multimedia self portrait is a nice introduction to many of the basics we will use in art class throughout the year, such as painting, collage, and drawing with lines and shapes.
Multi-media Self Portraits : Designing the Paper
During this session students will be introduced to painting procedures and different types of lines.
The first step is to draw different types of lines across the page with a black crayon. I show them the difference between a scribble and a thoughtful line. Encourage the kids to slow down and think about what they want the line to look like. We also talk about how using a variety of lines makes art more interesting. I also demonstrate how to use the paint and how to make rainbow paper by painting in stripes or rows. The reason for this is because many of them have little experience with paint and would mix all the colors together to make brown. By asking them to paint in stripes, they get some practice using the paint, begin to understand the process better, and still get a nice product in the end. Mixing colors in a purposeful way will come soon in another project, as well as experimenting with paint.
Here are two books that compliment this session:
Lines that Wiggle by Candace Whitman
What Makes a Rainbow by Betty Schwartz
Multi-media Self Portraits : Adding Collage
During this session students will be introduced to collage techniques such as cutting and gluing shapes.
- Provide each student with a circle shaped tracer for the head. Old plastic container lids are great for this. I come around to each table with a box of skin toned paper to choose from and they begin tracing the circle. After tracing the head, we cut it out and cut a little rectangle shape out of the scrap for the neck. I show each step as they are doing it as well as before they start. Provide each student with a rectangle of color paper of their choice for the shirt. We then draw a half circle from corner to corner, which I describe as a rainbow line. We cut out the shapes and begin assembling the portrait and body. I demonstrate how to trace the shape with a glue line as you see here. Keep in mind this may be their first experience with scissors and a glue bottle!
Multi-media Self Portraits : Adding the Details
Last but not least, our little artists will draw in their face with a black marker and glue on pieces of yarn for hair. I provide precut yarn, both long and short, in a variety of hair colors, as this age group typically has trouble cutting yarn. They love the feel of it and the 3D look it gives. If you are serving a classroom of kids, just organize the yarn into a shallow box and stop at each table, allowing them to choose.
And there you have it! A beautiful self portrait for your Kinders that gives them a taste of the variety of art techniques they will be exploring during the school year!
What kind of self portraits have you done with your child or students? How do you display or archive them?
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