When you approach a drawing activity with kids (adults too) they often have difficulty making their work go past the simple cartoon like image.
One of the ways we can address this is to get the student to really look at the pieces that make up the larger subject we are trying to draw.
This activity is applicable for all ages
- reference material, or model
- scrap paper in odd sizes
- pencil and eraser
- fine markers or sharpies
- paint, colored pencil, pastel or whatever you have to apply some color
- background paper for mounting
I like to use birds or animals, you could also do plants. Use whatever is applicable to your situation.
If you are able to observe a real life example go for it! Birds and animals may not always be cooperative though.
Variation: If you want to add a writing component to this activity try this,
- get the kids to write down the main descriptive components of their subject
- maybe they are describing it to an alien or someone who has never seen an animal or bird
- or a shopping list like "If I was going to make a........I would need...."
3-5 pieces of paper in different sizes.
Here I am focusing on that head, the ears, and that sway back as i really like that curve the tiger has.
Add some color to your sketch and you can even add extra lines to emphasize that shape if you want.
Now this is a cropped drawing so make sure the students fill in the entire background.
Here I am focusing on the pattern of the fur, the shape of the nose, and the wonderful luxurious tail.
I'm sure by the end of this exercise your students will be looking more closely to the parts/details of any future subject matter.
A short variation of this exercise can also be done in their sketchbooks, little 2"X2" studies to help them prepare for a larger composition.
Jeff, age 8