Spatter Painting by Walter Kuse
• Think like an artist. What kinds of art work could you do to share what you see on a winter walk with others? • If you walked the trail with an artist, what questions would you want to ask him or her? • What colors do you see when you look at a snowy scene? • Use a color wheel, pieces of colored construction or a box of 64 crayons. Find objects along the trail that match the colors on your samples. • We think of snow as white but artists use other colors when they paint it. What colors do you see? Why might it not look all white? • How do sunlight and shadow change what you see? Can you tell by looking at objects what direction light is coming from? How could that be shown in a painting? • Look closely at the bark on a tree or log. What colors do you see? How would you show the texture of the bark in a drawing or painting? • What shapes do you see in trees? How would you use shapes in identifying trees? Artists who illustrate field guides must make very accurate drawings. Draw pictures of trees without leaves to have a record of the kinds of trees seen • How do things far away differ in appearance from nearby objects? Compare sizes and colors? How could you show that in a drawing or painting? • If you have packing snow, make snow sculptures. Snow sculptures with cavities also make good temporary bird feeders. • Look at the spatter painted picture done by Walter Kuse showing evergreen trees in winter. What objects along the trail might be portrayed using spatter painting? Try doing spatter painting. (Use thin watercolor or tempera paint, a piece of screen and an old tooth brush. Rub the brush over the screen to make spatter spots on paper. Place shapes on paper to keep the paint from falling on some of the places. Put heavy spattering on places where you want shadows and less paint on areas showing light.) • Look at other winter scenes in different media by Walter Kuse. Look at paintings by other artists. Have a showing of winter art work done by you and your friends. • Artists and crafters often use cones, seed pods, twigs, goldenrod galls, reeds, and other botanicals for making craft projects. They display or group them, enjoy their shape and beauty and use them to make wreaths, dioramas, fanciful creatures, or collages. Because the rocks, trees and other plants along the nature trail are used by many different groups to observe their beauty or growth and change, it is important NOT to collect craft items there, but to leave them to be photographed, enjoyed, or identified and examined scientifically by others. Care for the environment also involves collecting only dead or fallen items, not bark from living trees or parts of dormant plants that will need to grow in spring. A collection of nature items to be used for crafts that has already been collected in other locations by knowledgeable adults can be obtained by request. • Photographers are artists too. Have a display of beautiful scenes or objects you see along the trail. Use a camera to take unusual close up pictures. A camera can be a tool. Use photographs to help you “see” the colors, shapes, horizons, and perspective in the artwork you may want to paint or draw. Written by Dr. Loretta Kuse and Dr. Hildegard Kuse


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