My 6-7 yrs olds beautifully channeled Basquiat in their self-portraits with free-association elements. Take a close look and get inside the complex minds of my littlest artists.
|Mei Mei 7|
I decided to forgo the usual crisp white paper for this project and instead had the kids paint their portraits on painted paper. I cut brown packing paper, which had previously served as table protectors and were full of paint and scribbles from previous art classes, into 12x15 sizes. This added to that Basquiat look of a scribbly, random, messy background. The kids chose the paint paper they wanted. We 'drew' our face with a tiny brush and black acrylic paint. Then added some areas of blue, yellow and red to frame our face and add some bursts of color. Next, we got our our black permanent makers and fine liners, our white gel pen, and our acrylic paint pens and added our free-association elements. We were mindful of thinking of balance and harmony - placing our elements thoughtfully around the painting. Lastly, we 'traced' along the black edge of our portrait with a white gel pen to make our face pop out and give us the contrast and focus it needs to stand out against a busy background. These turned out so beautifully, and each is so unique to my students.