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Lesson Plans

Re: medial and optical color systems

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Margaret Grosspietsch (Margaret.M.Grosspietsch-1)
Sun, 23 Feb 97 23:07:11 -0600

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Hi Rebecca. By "medial" do you mean paint media and by "optical" do you mean
colors being mixed by the eye? If so, read on... I just introduced a color unit
as part of my practicum.

Having never done this before, like you, I found all sorts of resources on the
web as I prepared my lesson. One site in particular went into great detail about
the differences between optical color mixing (think Seurat's pointilism and TV
and video technology, which are also composed of dots, and newspaper photos
viewed with a magnifier... more dots) versus paint mixing (where the primaries
are red, yellow, blue and all colors combined make black,etc.) versus light
mixing of color (where the "primaries" are red, green, and blue and all the
light waves of color combined are white!)--LOTS of color systems info.

Sorry, I don't have the URL, but a search with "optical" and "color" might get
you there. Also, my lesson included a look at Jasper Johns' "Ventriloquist" and
"Flags" where he depicts the American flag in green, black and orange. We
covered the basic concepts: primaries, secondaries and tertiaries (by mixing
food coloring on an overhead--check the artsednet archives for color wheel ideas
like that, because that's where I got it--thanks someone!). Then we talked about
complementaries and did the stare at the flag thing and then at white and voila,
an after image flag appeared in red, white and blue. (We had enough color copies
for every three kids to try... they worked together to see the illusion.)

The kids were directed then to design their own after-image, optical illusion
design. They made a sketch, planned out the colors, named the complements they
would appear as, etc. then painted with tempera (next day). Lots of excitement
and motivation around this project, and the concepts stuck, too!

Subsequent lessons will get into other color relationships (analagous,
monochromati, etc.), how complements are used to affect intensity before getting
into values, etc.

I hope this is what you were looking for, but if not, an archive search and web
search might be the way to go. I'm embarrassed that I don't know what your
cooperating teacher means by a "medial color system." Hope I'm not too far off.

Responding to the message of <19970224001747.13098.qmail>
from shampi07:
> I am a student teacher and I need to do a lesson on medial and
> optical color systems and it only needs to be a one day lesson according to
> the term plans of my cooperating teacher. I have no idea what type of
> lesson to do because unfortunetly I haven't had much experience with these
> systems. Help!!!
> Rebecca
> Student Teacher
> Potsdam/St. Lawrence
> .

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