Monthly Archives: June 2013

Jackson Pollock – Action Paintings


“I have no fear of making changes, destroying the image, etc., because the painting has a life of its own.”

– Jackson Pollock   

We had the pleasure of hosting another “in-class art session” at Humbercrest Public School. We introduced the iconic American painter, Jackson Pollock.

Jackson Pollock was born in Cody, Wyoming in 1912 and was the youngest of five sons.

During his lifetime he became a major figure in the abstract expressionist movement, a style of art that is characterized by an extremely energetic application of paint. He was most known for his unique style of drip painting. Pollock became famous for laying his canvas on the floor and dripping  paint over the surface.

Art for Pollock was about creating movement. Although his work appears easy to replicate nothing he did was an accident. He was known in the art world as ‘Action Jackson’ and became a major artist of his generation. He was regarded as reclusive and had a volatile personality. In 1945 he married the artist Lee Krasner, who became an important influence on his career and legacy.

We were inspired by his painting, Shimmering Substance for the project we completed with the students. First we used glue to create abstract lines across our watercolour paper. Next we poured salt over our paper to create texture over the glue. We coloured those lines with watercolour paint. The best part was sliding our boards into a cardboard box and splattering acrylic paint over the surface. We all had a lot of fun and the mess was contained inside our boxes! Take a look at a few of the finished pieces:

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Kenojuak Ashevak – A Great Canadian Artist

“A lot of times, I don’t make what is in my head because, as I go along, it even gets better. Maybe a lot of the artists are like me. They get stuck, and as they go along, it just comes.”

-Kenojuak Ashevak

A short time ago we were invited by a local Brownie group to come in and talk about a legend in Canadian art, Kenojuak Ashevak

Kenojuak Ashevak was born in an igloo in 1927 in Ikerrasak, which is located on Southern Baffin Island. She began her career in Cape Dorset, Nunavut. She worked in graphite, coloured pencils and felt-tip pens, and occasionally used poster paints, watercolours and acrylics.

She created many carvings from soapstone and thousands of drawings, etching, stonecut prints — all sought after by museums and collectors.She designed several drawings for Canadian stamps and coins.

During our session, the Brownie’s worked with liquid watercolour paint to create the background of their piece. Next, we used foam plates to create our own owls in the style of Ashevak.

*Sources: the Canada Council for the Arts and Wikipedia.

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Albrecht Durer – Rainy Day Flowers

   “What beauty is, I know not, though it adheres to many things.”

-Albrecht Durer

Albrecht Durer was born on May 21st 1471, in Nuremberg, Germany.  He was one of the first artists to become famous throughout Europe in his own lifetime.

He was a painter, designer, draughtsman, goldsmith, musician and a writer.  He also studied anatomy, mathematics, proportions, perspective and he completed a manual of geometry. His vast body of work also includes altarpieces and religious works, numerous portraits and self-portraits and copper engravings.  He engraved metal plates which were then inked and pressed onto paper to make many black and white prints which sold well throughout Europe.

We were inspired by his watercolour botanicals and created a rainy background to showcase our spring tulips.


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* This project was inspired by  a wax resist painting on A Faithful Attempt*

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Paul Klee and a Colour Study

  “A drawing is simply a line going for a walk.”

– Paul Klee

Paul Klee was born in Switzerland in 1879. He was a trained violinist and studied music in Germany. He decided to devote himself to art rather than music when he was a young adult.

Klee expressed himself in different styles. His art is a blend of surrealism, cubism and expressionism. He admired the drawings of children and tried to incorporate that energy and simplicity into his work.

He taught at the German Bauhaus School of Art with Wassily Kandinsky.  Klee studied and wrote extensively on colour theory and we used this for the inspiration for our pieces.


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