Saturday, August 22, 2009

Fine Art Class #4 ~ MC Escher, Master of Perspective

MC Escher... another artist from the Netherlands. And let me tell you, I could have researched him forever. What an interesting artist! He just had a eye like no other....

We started the talk off with a review:

and then moved on to Escher, Master of Perspective.

I showed the kids this picture, and asked them to tell me if it worked in their eyes. All of them said yes... and then I asked them where the water came from.... and they looked... and looked again. They came up with all sorts of ways to how it could works; pumps, water going so fast that it went uphill, etc. It was a neat and fun conversation.

We spent a lot of time talking about Depth Perception, and Foreground and Background. For depth perception I taught them the "I'm squishing your head" thing from SNL from when I was a kid. They got a kick out of that and they spent a few minutes 'squishing' each others heads and talking about depth perception and perspective. I doubt they will ever forget that! lol!

Then, putting pen to paper, I asked the kids to make me a snake. This snake had to cross over itself (foreground and background) and have some details. The kids spent over an hour on this project and a couple still didn't get theirs done. They were completely enthralled.

I wish I had a better picture of Elias'! His was amazing... it crossed over itself probably 10 times and he was coloring it gold when we had to stop and move on. I let him take the gold pencil home and I hope he brings it back to show it to me next week.

Then we moved on to Escher's Tessellations. The first pic is a perfect example of some of the works he is most famous for. His lizards that fit into each other so perfectly that it is hard to stop looking around the page. The activity that went with this part of the lesson had really shoddy directions. It ended up only working one way... which didn't really show the way to do a tessellation. It was frustrating for me and the kids... but they thought tessellations were fascinating and we spent a bunch of time looking at Escher's Metamorphosis Tessellations.

All in all, I considered it a good class. It wasn't my most successful class, but the kids really understood the concepts, and it was neat to watch them apply them.


Tammy said...

That is all very cool! What a fun lesson.

sarah in the woods said...

I'm filing away these lessons to do with my kids.

Sadie said...

I love Escher too. The kids did a great job on the snakes!

Valerie @ Frugal Family Fun Blog said...

That is so awesome, and it looks like so much fun! I agree, the kids really seem to have a great grasp of the concepts, and what more could you want?

Bona Fide Mama said...

I just love your art ideas! Wish you lived here and could teach Artsy Mamas classes!

Anonymous said...

Great stuff!

Kids in the Hall squished heads, though, not SNL.

Shawna said...

Thanks so much for the idea. My kids spent the afternoon drawing snakes. It completely captured their imaginations and was as easy (kindergarten) or as hard (3rd grade) as they wanted it to be.

I found the Escher print "Bond of Union" to be particularly useful for illustrating the idea of front/behind, as were all the samples you posted on your blog.