Learn to think outside the box using materials other than a paintbrush and discovering the prints and textures that result.
In week two of my basic art class (my class is once a week) we reviewed primary colors and how to mix them to make secondary colors.
Then we discussed the term "multi media" and what a "multi- media artist" is: someone who uses more than one medium to produce their art.
We talked about how you can be inspired and use anything to create art. Some examples I gave: I've been to a studio where the artist did a whole series with popsicle sticks in every work of art. Some artists use nothing but garbage they find; see Washed Ashore for a great example.
We then got to work on our trees. Yep, we made trees inspired by this great project I found on Pinterest: Tree Cork and Utensil Painting.
I modified it some to work a little better for us.
paper bag (or brown paper)
large white multi media paper
items for printing/making textures- we used rags, corks, and plastic forks.
First cut a rectangle from a paper bag, approximately 12"x7". Roll into a tube and then twist it.
Pull open one side a bit to widen the bottom for the base of the tree. Then widen the top and tear a few strips. Don't tear them off, just rip two or three sections that will be branches.
Glue the tree down, bending the branches to your liking. If you have time, you can lay a heavy book over it (cover your tree with another piece of brown paper so your book doesn't get glue on it). We didn't have time to wait for the glue to dry, so we used paste (specifically chunks of glue sticks because that's what we had) and went on to painting right away.
Pour paint, only in primary colors, onto separate paper plates. (I added a little white to the blue to lighten it, but didn't mix it completely, and put out a few more plates for mixing other colors. Everyone wanted green for the leaves, so, after asking them how to mix green, I mixed some up for them on another plate.)
Dip a rag into the blue and dab it, smash it, swirl it, blot it, any way you want (notice the different effects) on the top and around your tree.
Next, take a plastic fork, dip the prongs into the green and press along the bottom half of your paper. Angle the prongs a bit left when you press down, then press over the same spot angled to the right this time to get a grass effect.
Last, dip a cork into some paint and press it around the branches of your tree for leaves. The more colors the better. You can use different size corks, or add finger prints for larger and smaller dots, if you wish.
These are some of my students' beautiful works: