Acrylic paints is a great medium to create textures can be created using a number of tools. The textures are stunning and whats even better – children love to create them.
So many of my art projects we together create textures. Most of them form the backgrounds of our main painting.
Palette knives, sponges, alcohol are to name a few.
There are many interesting acrylic painting textures on paper. And the best part is, children enjoy doing these art projects.
Today we are working with plastic wrap that we normally use in the kitchen to cling wrap food.
This plastic quickly sticks to the paper and pushes the paint against the folds making uneven appearance of the paint.
You can compare this with the skin of the rhino or the elephant.
And yes, you can paint the rhino and the elephant using this technique.
Art project using plastic cling wrap
We will need acrylic paints, watercolor paper and paint brushes.
For creating this texture, you would need to mix the paint with some water so that it flows fast and does not dry. You can also mix retarder so that paint does not dry.
First, we painted the paper with a base color and let it dry. Next we used a slightly darker shade of paint and painted flat on top of it.
Before this dried, we put the plastic wrap and crumpled it more.
Let it rest for sometime before you pull the plastic wrap out.
Then let it dry.
We wanted to make this a curtain with some animals peeking in. So after the color dried, we painted an area white and the children drew their own animals within that area.
Another way to use plastic wrap is to paint it on the plastic wrap and put imprints of the paints on the paper. This texture looks slightly different and it can easily look like ripples in water as you see.
Use the plastic wrap in your own way and let the children love the effect.
Last year we did pop art inspired by the pop artist Burton Morris. How about we draw with the alphabets and numbers itself?
Letters and numbers have their unique shapes and these shapes can be further enhanced to create characters of our own.
Again there are multiple fonts to write letters. Letters can be fat or with angles. So with the change of fonts, the same letter can inspire children to draw new things.
How many ways can you convert these letters and words into images?
Doodling with Letters and Numbers
Look at the shape of each letter of Happy New Year and think of the nearest thing that you can think of that can be made from these shapes.
You can also think on the word as a whole and combine the letters to form something meaningful. You would find lot of images created from three letter words like the cat or the cow.
The third might be a series of things happening. Together they inspire something happening. Here is an artwork created by a young boy (grade 6) in the class. You can see in this painting that the two P’s in the word Happy are up to something together.
Whatever it is, to change these wonderful shapes into drawings of your own will be always interesting.
You can give out a paper with the words in different fonts or let the children decide the font they want to use if they are a little older.
Smaller children can easily try with monster faces with some googly eyes, hairy body and a pair or horns.
So doodle with letters and numbers this year. You can also mail me your art.
Here are some cool tricks to get beautiful acrylic painting textures on paper.
Do you know what fascinates children in art?
To get effects on the paper that they never have expected.
And that’s what led me to find tools and techniques to make the acrylic painting interesting.
Since you are working with children, you might also think of adding some retarder to slow the drying process.
Using Isopropyl Alcohol
Alcohol evaporates much faster than water and in the process leaves a mark around the contact areas of the alcohol with water which is mixed with the paint that has been applied on paper.
Sprinkle drops of isopropyl alcohol or rubbing alcohol, as they sometimes call it. Use a dropper to apply and then let it rest.
You can also use a dryer to dry the paint quickly. You will love the wonderful weird effects it has on acrylic paints.
Drops of water have also a fascinating effect on paper.
Take some surface of freshly painted acrylic paint.
Sprinkle some water on the surface and let it sit for some time. Use a kitchen towel to dab the surface dry and you would see missing paints on those areas keeping the other areas bright.
Using Plastic Wrap
Plastic wraps create a texture along their folds.
While the surface of the paint is wet, use a plastic wrap to cover the paper and let the fine wrinkles of the plastic wrap settle on the paint. Leave the surface undisturbed for some time. When you lift the plastic wrap, you would see an image of the wrinkled surface on the paint.
Using a Newspaper
Crumble a newspaper and lightly press it on the surface of a freshly acrylic painted surface.
Some of the paint is rubbed off the surface of the paper exposing beautiful shapes.
See the shape that you get. Enhance the shape to create the object that you see.
Vaseline acts as acrylic paint resistant.
So when you smear areas of the surface of paint with vaseline and paint on top of it, these areas won’t absorb any paint. So it will leave the underlying color exposed giving a beautiful abstract effect.
Using Leftover Acrylic Paints
Beautiful patterns form on the surface of palettes or surfaces where the paints are mixed.
These paints can be peeled easily as acrylic paints have a plastic finish.
Attached it to the surface of paper using the paint itself or acrylic medium. Even a mod podge can be used. Children will love these colours. Use this as a base to colour more.
Gesso is a white paint which can help create uneven structure on a canvas or paper.
The gesso can be applied with a knife or any other tool. This uneven surface created on paper is great to work on further.
Using a Cardboard
The piece of cardboard can be used to pull the paint on the surface.
Use two or three colours side by side and then use a cardboard to pull the paint on the surface. You can use an old credit card instead.
When you pull the cardboard over it, it gives a rainbow of colours in the direction that you pull.
We have used different shades of blue and green to paint the sea in acrylic.
Using the Palette Knife
Palette knives have been used in different ways by artists to apply thick layers of paint on paper. This style is called the impasto painting.
It is also a nice way to try out with children.
Other ways to create textures and patterns include using stamps and stencils or even printing. We will try these methods too.
If you are interested in buying some of these art mediums online, here are the links to them.
Aipan is a floor art from Uttarakhand. Though mainly a floor art, this art is also done on walls, doorstep and in the puja room. During the festive season, people decorate the floors with intricate designs. It is believed that these motifs evoke divine power which brings good fortune and wards off the evil.
Like many other floor art that we see, this art is also done by the women in the house and the form has been handed over from one generation to the next. So there is no defined way to create these patterns but there are some shapes which make it easily recognizable.
Unlike Rangoli and Kolam in South India, Aipan is free form. We do see geometrical patterns and linear designs. You can recognise this art easily with the close lines that are drawn parallel to each other to fill a space. The common Indian patterns like flowers, birds, conch shells, feet of the Goddesses that adorn aipan.
Aipan is done over the brick red floor with a white paste made out of rice flour. The way the powdered rice is used is different for different art forms. Like in Rangoli we use the rice powder itself to create the design. Alpana from Bengal uses this flour paste which is thick in consistency and it is applied with a piece of cloth. The women use their fingers to paint aipan. The consistency of the flour paste is much thin and flows easily.
Art lesson from Aipan
We will need colored paper and white acrylic paint and a thin brush. See some aipan designs. There are some very common motifs that are used in Indian designs. They are the spirals, Paisleys and the swastiks. Dots form an important pattern. Thin parallel lines are drawn quite often in Aipan.
Children above 10 years should try this art.
Here you will learn
To control a thin brush to make patterns in free hand.
Drawing simple Indian patterns
Filling up areas with patterns
Drawing parallel lines and bringing symmetry to patterns
Stippling brush painting is a pattern of painting created with small dots. Many artists like Georges Seurat has used this technique to create entire paintings. Trees and shrubs and other things which have a dotty structure can be painted using this technique to give a realistic look.
Let’s try stippling brush painting with children.
For this, you would need acrylic paints, watercolor paper or canvas and fan brushes with stiff bristles.
For having a more blended effect, we can use fan brushes with softer bristles.
As usual, we draw inspirations from an artist. Today our artist is Peter Adderley. See some of his paintings pinned in Pinterest.
Peter Adderley creates charming paintings that capture the British seaside. The sea is his source of inspiration. His subjects are playful and childlike and the paintings look deceptively simple.
Today we will paint the sea. The sea as is in his paintings is not still but has wild waves. Now here is where we will use the stippling technique.
First, paint the entire sheet with shades of blue and green in a wavy pattern.
We have used phthalo turquoise, permanent blue light, ultramarine blue and permanent green light from Camel Artists Acrylic Colour. The colors are used dry. But a lot of these paints are used so that one color merges into the other.
While the paints are still damp on paper, drops of water are allowed to fall on the paint. They sit on the paper for some time and then cleaned with a soft cloth. This gives more texture to the water.
Colour the boat and the people. The boat has also been painted using in the stippling technique and here the two colors have been merged using this technique.
After that the foams on the waves are created. The brush used is completely dry and little paint is picked up in the brush at a time. They are blended at some places by hand.
We buy a lot of art materials for our children every now and then. And once we buy them we need to think about storing them properly so that we can use it for a long time. Here are some ideas what you can buy as Art Supply Storage boxes online.
All art supplies should necessarily be kept away from sunlight, preferably in a cool dark place. Some need to be stored upright while others are stored better when kept horizontally.
Each type of medium has its own requirements and today we see what we use to keep our art supplies organized.
Here are some options that you can buy online from Amazon to store and organize kids art supplies in a small space.
Crayons and Oil Pastels
Most oil-based materials need to be stored away from the sunlight. It also should necessarily be kept in a cool place. I keep them in their individual box in the cupboard. Since the pastels are sticky and easily bleeds into each other, different shades should not touch each other. You can keep similar shades in a compartmentalized box. Art bin has a variety of bins to choose from.
Color pencils are fragile and when they fall on the floor, which they easily do because they roll off the table. When it falls it not only breaks the pencil tip but also the lead that is inside. Always keep pencils in containers. Pencils can be kept horizontally or vertically and if they are kept vertically, their tip should point upwards. if you keeping the pencils in a tinned box, see that there is a foam or a softer material which acts as a cushion for the pencils.
Markers and Sketch pens are kept usually vertical unless they are dual tip ones. Many prefer to keep them vertically with the tips facing up so that the nibs are not clogged. I usually keep them facing vertically down or horizontally. The pens should be necessarily be capped properly at all times.
It is ok to store acrylic paints horizontally but it has to be seen the cap of the paints are screwed properly. I keep them in deep plastic containers but see to it that the heavy ones are not stacked above the smaller tubes. Store acrylic paints in plastic pouches and hang the organizer around the working area.
Brushes can be kept with bristles facing upwards in old cups or glasses. It must dry flat and then kept in the vertically upright position. If you want to carry your brushes, use these folding bags around.
We should keep all our art supplies in one place. There is the stackable container where you can sort and keep your painting supplies in one place. I love the portable art supply storage solutions as we can be flexible in choosing the place we want to sit.
There are many drawing competitions that are held for school children in India every year. These can be participated individually or through schools. It happens all the year round and offers a great opportunity for students to show their creativity.
There are also institutes and companies who organize art competitions in cities and towns and one can get information on these upcoming events on the websites that list events in a city.
The list of art contests that are held online in India where children can register and participate individually are below. These are mostly meant for kids from age 4 to 17 years.
For some of these contests, the children need to send the original picture through post. For others, they need to take a photograph of the artwork and upload on the respective website.
Click on the links to go to their respective site and participate in the competition.
Drawing Competition for children in India
CAMEL ART CONTEST
1. Camel Art Contest is one of the oldest art contest that is held at the national level. Now the participation in the world’s largest Art Contest can be online. The children have to draw with Camel colours on the given topic. The photo of the painting has to be taken with the entry coupon and uploaded on their site.
The entry coupon can be found in the art material sold by Camlin Kuyoku. The registration can be individual or from the school but the stamp from the school is required. Entry deadline for the contest is usually the end of September.
Check the brochure for the art contest on their site for more details.
2. Artroots holds an annual art contest for school children in India. The competition is called Evince Art Contest. The last date for submission of artwork is usually in December or beginning of January. The details and rules of the contest can be found on their facebook page almost a month before the contest. The competition is open to students of 1st to 12th standard.
There is an entry fee and the painting should be submitted along with the entry form. The art should be sent to Mumbai. Please note that the size of the paper and the medium to be used are mentioned in the details of the contest.
3. Artnculture.org – There is an All India Painting Competition organized by Artnculture.org each year. 2018 is their 17th year of the contest. Antnculture gives the children the freedom to use any size of paper, the medium and the topic to paint. The paper should be cartridge or ivory sheet. The judgment is done on the basis of the colours used and how they are combined and not in the drawing itself.
Children under 17 years can participate. There are 4 groups, 3-6 years, 7-10 years, 11-14 years and 15-17 year. The artwork should be sent to the mentioned address before the end of September.
4. Picasso art contest holds free online art contest almost all the year round. Send your paintings through email for the contests posted on their website. Children from the age of 6 to 19 can participate in the contest.
5. ArtInfoIndia.com announces children art contest for kids to participate in the month of May. This contest is now been held for the last 5 years. The registration can be done by individuals or through schools, art teacher or hobby center.
6. Plowns is an online platform where kids can save and share their creative work to a wider audience. They hold the art contest every month. There is usually a particular topic each month. There are prizes every week and also a grand winner for the month.
7. Kshitij is conducting their 20th International Children Art contest in 2018. The participation in this contest is in groups, especially through an institution or a school. Individual participation is allowed in case you are a life member of Kshitij. There are 8 age groups that children can participate. The contest is usually held in April-May.
8. RobinAge Bright Sparks Award – Now in their 5th year, the RobinAge Bright Sparks Awards is a national initiative that encourages and supports creativity in children.
The competition invites school students from Class 1 to 10 to send their artwork and they are judged by premiere children’s authors and artists. The contest results are declared in the month of April. All entries submitted online gets an e-certificate for participation.
NAZARIYA ART COMPETITION
9. Nazariya art competition is a National Level Painting Competition conducted in India every year on the occasion of World Environment Day. The event is followed by an exhibition displaying top 100 paintings. There is an entry fee for this contest and the contest is held for three age groups, Class 1 to 3, Class 4 to 6 and class 7 to 10.
If your child decides to colour with crayons and oil pastels, you can buy them easily online at cheaper rates from Amazon.
Here are some of the contests where the students can participate only through schools. So usually the art teachers in school conduct the contest at school and send the entries to the organizations. Some of these competitions include
NAVNEET YOUVA MASTER STROKE
10. Navneet Youva Master Stroke is an exclusive drawing competition that offers students from Nursery to Class 10, an opportunity to showcase their creativity on the national scale. A huge number of students participate in the competition. The last date of this contest is usually in the month of August. Each school must complete the school level competition which is to be held at the school campus before this date. The winners of this stage will go on to compete at district, state, and national level.
SMALL HANDS AND BIG ART
11. Small Hand Big Art (SHBA), is an initiative that seeks to promote Children’s Art and provide an opportunity for children to take pride in their creativity. Entries are collected through schools ONLY and children of age 5 to 17 years can participate. The contest is usually held during the month of July to September and the results are declared in January of the following year. All the winners of the competition are provided with a monetary award, a certificate and an opportunity to display their work at one of the premium art galleries in India. They also get the invitation to the Winners Mentorship Program. Details of their contest are available on their website.
SHANKAR’S INTERNATIONAL CHILDREN’S COMPETITION
12. Shankar’s International Children’s Competition is an international art contest held from India. Here children are free to choose the topic and the medium. Any number of entries can be submitted. The last date for sending the entries is usually October and the results are declared in September of next year. Search for this context to read the brochure of that year.
If you know of any contests that are held at the national level online and registration can be done individually or from school, please send me a message at email@example.com and I would add it to the list.
While looking for colorful art in acrylic, I found the famous El Salvadoran artist, Fernando LLort. Lively and picturesque, his paintings today represent El Salvador folk art.
Talking little about the artist, Fernando had a passion for art since he was a little boy and he did not leave an opportunity to draw since his childhood. At the age 23, he moved to a small town on the northern mountains of El Salvador named La Palma. He celebrated the culture by painting his surroundings. He shared his talent around him by teaching the people from the town to draw and paint. From then on, La Palma changed from a small agricultural town to a place where people are driven by art.
His work is known worldwide and is displayed in galleries, museums and private collections all around the world.
When we see Fernando LLort’s folk art we see that he draws simple things like the house, the cows and horses, the farmer, the corn and the birds. The paintings show illustrate La Palma life. The paintings are usually divided into sections where each of these subjects are drawn decoratively. The figures are mostly geometrical and they are filled with geometrical figures too. They are then painted in bright colours. Mostly they are painted flat but sometimes we do see they are shaded in darker colours.
Fernando LLort’s art project
Today we draw a painting where we will divide the painting into sections and drawing things that are related to each other. They can be things in nature or any other things that are related.
Use bright colours to paint it flat. Create patterns to make them vibrant. Use black permanent markers to have bold outlines.
How do we draw emotions and facial expressions? Are there some important features in the face that makes someone look sad or happy, angry or pensive. Yes, there are and probably eyes are one of the most important features in the face that help to show the true emotions.
When we talk of expressions, we have to talk about Yoshitomo Nara who loves drawing and sculpting disgusting cute figures of small children. Yoshitomo Nara specializes in what is called Kimo Kawaii or ‘disgustingly cute’, a genre of Japanese pop art. These children that he paints have strong expressions and mischievous smiles. Takashi Murakami pop art style is another pop art style from Japan that you will enjoy.
Nara is a contemporary Japanese artist who after doing his BFA and MFA in Japan went to study further in Kunstakademie Düsseldorf in Germany. He has had many solo and group exhibitions all over the world.
His subjects are children whose faces are usually angry and grumpy and sometimes blank, faces children usually make when they are woken up from sleep. The head of the children is drawn bigger compared to the body to highlight the innocent expressions of the child. The eyes are big and the nose is small. The emotions are transparent as that we see with children.
Facial expressions and how to draw them
Have a look at some of the faces of children that Yoshitomo Narahas created.
See how the expressions change with the change in the shape and size of eyes, lips and also the angle of the face itself.
Use micro tip pens to draw on a sketchbook paper. You can use brown pens to outline. Start drawing the eyes. Then include other parts of the face to show the expressions. You can include other expressions as well.
We are using watercolor pencils to give the soft look that you see in illustrations of children’s books.