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Have students create a repeated design using a successful contour drawing.
Using a window, lightbox, or graphite paper, they can trace their original
drawing in many ways. Some of my students have used radial balance, others
made random patterns, and alternating directions, etc. Good way to have them
think about design, pattern, and balance. I have them make thumbnails first.
All the students had a successful design, and it's an interesting way to show
the power of pattern and repetition.
Some subject matter that we used was their hand holding something, flowers
(fake ones we had on hand--plastic ones make great drawings) and growing
things from a drawing session outside on the grass with clover, dandelions
and little tiny flowers that show up in the spring. One seventh grader who
was not especially skilled used his contour of a calculator. It was a plain
drawing, not eye-catching, but his design turned out quite interesting.
This year I'm going to have the students use a triangular section of a
contour of a face or figure to make a kaleidoscope design. Will give them a
Xeroxed pattern for a section of the circle, and they will be able to choose
whether it could be 1/8 circle (to make a 4-sided design) or 1/12 circle (to
make a 6-sided design). They will trace their design onto that, cut it out
and retrace all around the circle, flipping over every other one to make the
kaleidoscope pattern. It will be used for a color exercise too. They will
only use a portion of a drawing, even if part of that drawing turned out to
be unacceptable to them. Kind of a trash-to-treasure experience, I hope. Lots
of ways to tie in history and self-expression.
I love repeat patterns, can you tell? Hope to see other ideas here, too. Was
interested to see you are using sign language too. Had not heard anyone doing
this, but my beginner students spell out their name, so as to avoid the gang
signs and obscene gestures that happened -- ha! Drawing their hand seems to
be very good practice since the subject is so close to their eyes, and it's
easier for me to help them "get" it when helping them.