That's what second grade artists imagined. They brainstormed a lot of interesting ways they could experience the art. They all agreed that being able to feel the artwork would be an excellent way to enjoy the work. We then felt all around us (the carpet, the tile, soles of our shoes, etc.) and learned that texture is the way the surface of an object feels when you touch it.
We then learned that artist Andrew Lakey is known as the "artist for the blind" because he uses so much texture in his paintings. We also discovered that he makes portraits of peoples hands.
Inspired by the fantastically textured work of Andrew Lakey, second graders created the base for their own textured self-portraits using textured wall paper, glue and sand. The next week we talked about a different fort of feeling: our emotions.
We reviewed the differences between warm and cool colors. Warm colors remind us of warm objects (like the sun and fire) and they cause us to feel energetic and exciting. Cool colors remind us of cool objects (like ice and grass) and they cause us to feel calm and collected.
With that in mind, second graders chose colors that the believed would best describe their personality. Take a look at these incredible self-portraits!
I found a similar project designed by a fellow art teacher's blog, Adventures of an Art Teacher, last year. I added the hand portrait concept, and the project has been a favorite staple in my curriculum ever since!