Fourth Graders Draw Inspiration from Early Cubists' Techniques

The fourth grade artists have been practicing observational drawing since the beginning of the semester. In this project they worked directly from a still life set up in the center of the room. The students looked carefully at early Cubist still-life works by Picasso and Braque. “They were inspired then to draw the still life on the same page from different angles, overlapping and creating new shapes. They took their favorite drawings and developed them into a finished piece of work,” says art specialist Cathryn Withrington. The students then had to think about focal point, balance, unity, and depth in their composition, using colors inspired by early Cubist works. They are now adding pattern, collage, and tonal shading to create emphasis and a feeling of depth. 
“This project is demanding,” Ms. Withrington emphasizes. “It requires the students to observe, plan, create, experiment, reflect, and—especially—persist. These are among the eight ‘studio habits of mind’ we teach, in order to bring mindfulness and awareness to the process of art making.” The other two habits of mind instilled by our art specialists are practice and express.