For this project, I had my students look at flowers painted by Van Gogh. My 3rd graders always complain about their drawings not being "perfect", so I like to point out that Van Gogh flowers are not perfect either. Many of the flowers in his paintings are wilting and loosing its petals. I really think this helps them not worry about "perfect" in their drawings.
This project was finished in a quick one hour class period. It's always tricky for me to do projects with tempera paint because all of my art lessons have to be finished in one lesson. This gives no time to let paint dry between steps. However, this one worked out fairly well. I had the students start drawing with black crayon because I didn't want them to get picky and spend too much time erasing. We drew a vase with at least three flowers in it. Then I had the students use tempera paint to paint the vase, flowers and table. For this project, I did not let my students mix many colors. The only thing I allowed was tinting the colors with white. They could add white to red to make pink, or add white to blue to make a lighter blue. The background was painted with short paint strokes. This was suppose to simulate the kind of strokes Van Gogh would have used in his own paintings. However, it ended up looking more like confetti in the background. Still cool, but am not sure if the students got the point.I really like how these painting have so much movement. One of my students told me that the flowers look like they are dancing, and I totally agree with her.